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Case Study: Implementing a Change Management Strategy

Posted on Dec 07, 2016 by kpoy  | Comments (0)

Owners, designers, and construction contractors know that when faced with change, problems that hinder project success is inevitable if not expected. Changes interrupt the flow of work, create delays, cause schedules to slip, and inflate costs which in turn might generate claims and possibly even costly litigation.

Our client is the general contractor on a hydroelectric project in Eastern Canada working with both owner and other contractors along with their own sub-contractors. The work at site was contracted to start in the spring of 2015 and to take twelve months to complete. The spring start was to provide the general contractor and its sub-contractors with nine months of favorable weather conditions to complete the heavy construction requirements of the contract.

Site preparation delays led to a fall start date which meant starting the project in winter conditions. In addition, the owner’s contractor still had cranes and other equipment onsite finishing their contracted site preparation work, preventing our client and its sub-contractors from having full and free access to the site causing delays in establishing an efficient schedule.

Shortly after starting the owner tasked our client with an acceleration directive, only accepting 30% of the cost. Given the directive from the owner, the general contractor had no choice but to pass its own directive on to its three sub-contractors on a proportionate basis consistent with their share of the work.

The delay, the restricted access and the directive all led to the general contractor’s need for a claims management processes that is robust and comprehensive to ensure full compensation for the work provided under the schedule constraints that were imposed on them after contract award.

 

The Decision Process

Our client chose to engage with PTAG due to our level of understanding on the project that competitors did not have. As well our level of expertise in change management far exceeded our competitors because of the unique solution we presented.

 

The Solution in Action

PTAG’s unique solution offered many benefits to our client due to the initial assessment of their existing change management system. Our assessment did not stop at what should be done but focused on where the gaps were and what a future system needed for the client to successfully manage change orders and requests. The assessment, like all assessments was picked for the best and easiest recommendations to implement, leading our client to further engage with PTAG.

Two of our subject matter experts provided advice for developing, implementing and maintaining a strong Change Management Strategy for the remaining work in this stage of the project and enabled all future stages to be successful.

The strategy was also accompanied by a Claims Management Plan consisting of an implementation plan to improve agreement adherence, project documentation, and timely responses to changes.

 

The Result

The general contractor is now in a significantly better position since PTAG’s initial assessment, and by that measure the engagement has been deemed a success. The ramifications of the assessment, strategy and plan has lead our client to start to look at an automated system that will cut down on paperwork administration, mitigate communication problems and create a bullet-proof audit trail. 

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