QS's Measures to Enhance Cost Effectiveness of Projects and Processes

Estimating

  1. Provide early and quick advice on costs of preliminary design to avoid abortive design effort
  2. Provide early and quick advice on costs of alternative designs to select the better alternatives
  3. Participate actively in project meetings to voice out areas of design with possible imbalanced cost allocations
  4. Participate in value management workshops to evaluate different design options to enhance values of proposed designs
  5. Update the pre-construction cost estimates regularly in line with design development to ensure no uncontrolled budget overrun
  6. Advise on the cost implications of major changes likely to cause budget overrun to see whether the changes are justified and value for money
  7. Suggest savings to off-set unexpected changes contributing to budget overrun

Tender Documentation

  1. Suggest how the contracts should be packaged to give a proper balance between long lead time to complete design for the whole project, risks and hence higher tender prices to allow for long lag time to actually carry out some work sections, single line of responsibility, etc.
  2. Suggest how the design responsibilities should be shared between the Architect & Engineer and the Contractor to ensure proper share without undue high costs and unbearable risks while benefiting from the Contractor's design-and-build expertise
  3. Observe and follow the standard practice and procedures and use standard templates to reduce abortive work to team members in scrutinising the deliverables
  4. Request for the most up-to-date client's practice manuals, standard templates and house rules which may not yet be available on the web site yet to avoid abortive work
  5. Scrutinise the standard templates for preparing tender documents and make suitable amendments to reflect the project specifics to ensure that the tenderers are sufficiently alerted to when pricing the tenders
  6. Seek early approval on authority to use alternative standard provisions and on deviations from the mandatory standard provisions
  7. Check actively the tender drawings and tender specification to ensure sufficient details and no discrepancies, and request the Architect and Engineer to supplement and clarify accordingly
  8. Prepare the cost estimates and bills of quantities in good quality following a due process of quality control to eliminate chances of errors or omissions.
  9. Use provisional quantities or schedule of rates as a supplement to the bills of quantities in case the relevant design is not fixed and firm yet for tendering so to obtain rates for post contract pricing

Tender Analysis

  • Scrutinise the tenders received to ensure no irregularities in pricing

Post Contract Cost Contract

  1. Advise on the cost implications of every proposed variation as well as instruction involving expenditure of provisional items during construction
  2. Update the post contract cost reports regularly considering all variation instructions, expenditure of provisional items, claims, etc. to ensure no uncontrolled budget overrun
  3. Suggest savings to off-set unexpected changes contributing to budget overrun
  4. Value payments fairly and reasonably so as not to cause unfair and unnecessary cash flow burden on the Contractor, which will eventually result in higher final account claim
  5. Advise on proper contractual interpretation to fairly treat reasonable claims and resist unreasonable claims
  6. Suggest alternative solutions to help resolve problems encountered by the Contractor to avoid the problem to escalate into a cost claim without chance of mitigation
  7. Adopt the principle of mediation where parties should seek to achieve win-win situation in stead of arguing over the rights and wrongs