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The Construction Contract Administration Knowledge Community (CCA) has been established to help our members better understand the issues, actions and resultant impact of the decisions required in this often neglected part of Project Delivery. It is our goal to provide clear answers to issues of concern to the Institute’s membership and share case studies and best practices. We further hope to provide guidance and direction in developing guidelines for new and evolving approaches to Project Delivery as well as guidance in the continuing education of our emerging young professionals.


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What is a Bulletin?

  • 1.  What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-20-2022 10:15 AM
    I have been seeing this term used in CCA, but yet I cannot find a standard definition. What is a Bulletin? and if it is a "real" form why isn't it covered in the AIA's "G Section of the Handbook?

    Janene Christopher AIA
    RJC Architects
    San Diego CA

  • 2.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-21-2022 05:43 PM
    Edited by Jeremy T. Franklin AIA 07-21-2022 05:43 PM
    It isn't a "real" form.  But a lot of firms use the term when they want to either (a) be agnostic about whether they're showing a change that affects cost and schedule (which I consider a cop-out) or (b) use one form that has checkboxes or options that refer to documents such as ASI, CCD, PR, etc.  The latter use makes it simpler to have only 1 type of form for construction phase issuances that cover all bases.

    Jeremy Franklin AIA


  • 3.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-21-2022 08:56 PM
    Thanks for the response Jeremy;
    With respect to  Option b) seems to be a document to list all the issued contract forms (ASIs, CCDs,  etc) so why not use a transmittal?
    Seems like this "Bulletin" is more akin to your cop-out remark; in that "the architect" makes a list of revisions RFIs, ASI, Owner changes and any other revisions to the documents and hands it over the "Bulletin" to the Owner and/or GC to deal with.

    Janene Christopher AIA
    Steinberg Hart
    San Diego CA

  • 4.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-22-2022 05:30 PM
    I've not used "Bulletins", but do know of some firms which issued them to convey "here is some information you need to know" that otherwise might have been buried in job meeting notes.  Like "there will be a track meet at the high school in two weeks and several parking lots won't be available for overflow tradesperson parking".  Some used it more as an ASI.

    Note that (horrors) not every firm uses only AIA-generated construction administration documents,  many contractors don't know the difference, and many owners cut deals on the side or in meetings that make creating a change order to incorporate what you just heard is a challenge.

    best regards,
    Joel Niemi
    - Architect

  • 5.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-23-2022 02:39 AM
    The "Bulletin" is a vehicle for issuing clarifications or changes to the construction documents. As it is not defined in the the various AIA General Conditions it is up to the architect using the form to define its use. Preferably in the General Requirements, and minimally within the form itself. As the term "Bulletin" is "agnostic" as to which contractual change vehicle it is, it is open to being used various ways as has been mentioned in other posts, most of which have other industry standard names, such as Addenda, or ASI.

    I am familiar with what Jeremy Franklin termed "Option B", where it is used as the form for issuing PRs, ASIs, and CCDs. This allows for a single list of issuances of clarifications and changes. I don't know of another term for such a form, which suggests this as the preferred use. 

    In this use the Bulletin form is more than a "transmittal" as it contains the issuing language for use as an ASI, or as a Proposal Request, or as a CCD. It has text addressing scope, time and cost as appropriate for all three modes of issuance. It also has space for the issuing Architect's signature as well as for the Owner and Contractor to indicate their acceptance or concurrence. It has the same information and full contractual force as the individual forms AIA provides, but all in one form. 

    I've done it both ways, separate forms for Proposal Request, ASI, and CCD, and using the Bulletin form to issue scope clarifications and changes for all three modes by checking the box for whether it is being issued as a PR, ASI, or CCD, and then filling in the appropriate cost and time change information. 

    There are many benefits to having a single form to issue clarifications and changes. You don't have three logs to track the issuance numbers, or to search to find the change. If an ASI evolves into a CCD during production it doesn't change, for example, from ASI 12 to CCD 4, it stays as Bulletin 16. If you issue a proposal request as Bulletin 17, you can then issue it as a CCD by issuing revised Bulletin 17 with the accepted price and time. It allows you to match the Revision delta number to the Bulletin number if you wish or an agency requires.   

    Stephen Jackson AIA
    RBB Architects Inc.
    Lafayette CA

  • 6.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-23-2022 12:14 PM
    There's another reason to issue a Bulletin instead of a CPR: if the Owner has a Construction Manager as Advisor, managing several prime contractors, then one should not send a CPR or Change Request to said CMa, as he is NOT the contractor. But since the CM should be managing the change, issuing a Bulletin, which informs of the change, but does not direct the recipient to provide a price, allows said CM to send his OWN CPR to the affected contractors.
    This is very common in public work, where CMs at Risk are usually not permitted, so a CMa is the only way to fast-track a project. Architects then issue Bulletins to the CMa's.

    Gustavo A. Lima, AIA, MRAIC, DBIA, LEED AP

    Sent from Gus' mobile device

  • 7.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-25-2022 11:27 AM
    Historically, "Bulletins" or "Bulletin Drawings" (BD-#X) were 8-1/2" x 11" or similar size Drawings, now commonly referred to as Supplemental Drawings today, used to provide clarification or additional information to the Contractor. They were also use with Request for Proposals forms to request pricing from the Contractor for possible changes in the Work.

    Dennis Hall FAIA
    Charlotte NC

  • 8.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-21-2022 07:37 PM
    Edited by Ronald L. Geren AIA 07-21-2022 07:38 PM
    AIA Document A201 specifically mentions Change Orders and Construction Change Directives, which affect the contract sum, contract time, or both. The A201 also allows the architect to make "minor changes" to the contract that do not affect the contract sum and time. However, the A201 does not stipulate the form to be used when directing those minor changes. The AIA provided Document G710 "Architect's Supplemental Instructions" as a suitable form for issuing minor changes. Other firms use "Bulletins," "Field Orders," etc. -- anything that is acceptable.

    Whatever form is used, the specifications in Division 01 should identify the form that the contractor should expect should a minor change be issued. Doing so avoids the misinterpretation of a verbal request, email, text message, or other documents as a direction to the contractor to make a change.

    Ronald Geren, AIA, FCSI, CCS, CCCA, CDT
    RLGA Technical Services
    Scottsdale AZ

  • 9.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-22-2022 01:19 PM
    I've seen bulletin used in a variety of situations, most often meaning some kind of written information adding to, clarifying or modifying the bidding or contract documents. It's not a term that is recognized in the AIA agreements, conditions, or forms, where you'd issue an "addenda" during contract pricing period, or use Architectural Supplemental Instruction (no cost, no time change based upon the information) or Change Order (either a cost or time impact or both) following contract award. Both ASI and Change Order are the normal AIA terminology found in their documents and standard forms. Bulletin also may be used in reference to an information document issued that is general use and not necessarily related to a specific project or set of documents.

    Arlen Solochek, FAIA
    Arlen Solochek FAIA, Consulting Architect
    Phoenix, AZ

  • 10.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-26-2022 10:15 PM
    This has been a lively discussion, with lots of good information.  Sometimes we old guys forget to point out to those just learning, that words matter and language is important - in context.  The AIA, and the industry overall, has established an extensive vocabulary that makes communication effective.  However, very few terms are a matter of law, and people are free to express themselves as they choose.  Not following widely recognized standard terminology can cause confusion and lead to trouble.

    Always remember to read things in context.  If Owner A and Contractor B have agreed that blue is green, then everyone involved needs to know that, and follow the convention that applies.  All of the answers in this string, that I have read, answer in the context of the AIA Agreements, though the question does not establish that context.  Always be on the lookout for the unconventional.  I have seen several non-standard construction contracts in recent months.  In such a case, a bulletin could be contract change.  I doubt that is the case here.


    Thomas J. Donoghue, AIA, LEED AP
    DONOGHUE Project Consulting
    2354 Rexford Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15241
    412 605-7045
    This message is confidential and intended for named recipients only.

  • 11.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-22-2022 05:26 PM
    I agree with everyone else.  The real issue is that it does not provide clear direction to the contractor.  Should they proceed with the work and they will paid? (CCD)  Should the contractor just price the changes? (PR)  Should they proceed if they agree that there is no cost or schedule change?(ASI).

    Larry Nordin AIA
    Anytown DC

  • 12.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-22-2022 09:48 PM
    We used to use Bulletins to amend bid documents.  Today they are generally called addenda.


    Thomas J. Donoghue, AIA, LEED AP
    DONOGHUE Project Consulting
    2354 Rexford Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15241
    412 605-7045
    This message is confidential and intended for named recipients only.

  • 13.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-26-2022 07:14 PM

    Bulletins are issued only prior to the award of a contract  Once the contract has been accepted and is underway, then ASI, CCD, PRs, etc. are issued by the architect in agreement with the owner. Any of those instruments, issued after the contract is signed, should be with the full consent and approval of the owner. A bulletin can address the "late-to-the-table" change, also authorized by the owner, to be included in the bid. There are also "Alternates" that are issued either with the Bid Documents most times during the bidding process. Sometimes on larger projects, there can be a change in the scope of a particular system in the building (ie, structural design, mechanical system, LEED consideration, material change, etc.)

    "Bulletins" are only issued prior to the acceptance of the bid

    Mark Forth, AIA, NCARB
    Principal | Mark Forth Architect
    Orange County, CA

  • 14.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-27-2022 07:10 PM

    I hate to be the nay-sayer here, but we issue Bulletins monthly as a wrap up to changes during construction.  This follows in the "if the Owner and Contractor say blue is green, then its green" category – in many cases, we are directed to issue only Bulletins, and the older and more traditional Construction Change Directives and Change Orders simply don't exist on our projects.  In our current method, contractors send in RFIs; we respond to them, and then on a monthly basis consolidate these changes into a Bulletin that is issued to the entire team.  From a specifications perspective, this is the time we issue updated spec sections, and the updated Table of Contents for the project manual.   On our large jobs, we have to consolidate all these changes to once a month, otherwise management of the documents can be too scattered.


    About half the projects we work on in our West coast offices are design/build and we come on board to the contractor's system already in place, and it most assuredly does not conform to the change process as outlined by the typical AIA contract.  In many cases, we are given direction in how post-pricing documents are revised.



    Principal  |  Sr. Specification Writer

    One Bush Street, Suite 200  |  San Francisco, CA 94104 USA
    t +1 415 356 8685  m +1 510 388 4333  |  privacy policy

  • 15.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-27-2022 07:33 PM
    Edited by Jeremy T. Franklin AIA 07-27-2022 07:33 PM
    Nothing wrong with that... just because it isn't an AIA form doesn't mean there is anything wrong with using this method. Sounds like it works well for you.

    Jeremy Franklin AIA


  • 16.  RE: What is a Bulletin?

    Posted 07-27-2022 08:10 PM
    At CannonDesign we used the same method described by Anne in large DBFM (Desig/Build/Finance/Maintain) projects, where we worked for the Builder.

    But we also used Bulletins to communicate changes to CMa's, as I commented earlier.

    To those of you who say they only issue CO's and CCD's: what do you issue when the Builder is a CMa, and there are 20 prime contractors? 20 CCD's? A CCD to the CMa, who does not have a construction contract with the Owner? An ASI, even though you know the work is an extra? The best solution is a Bulletin, which the CMa will then use to issue RFP's to the affected contractors.

    Gustavo A. Lima, AIA, MRAIC, DBIA, LEED AP

    Sent from Gus' mobile device