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Design Build Project

Posted By Joe Flemming, Friday, August 10, 2018
 
 

Today, I interviewed for a Public Design Build Project. First, some background: About the only information required from the owner was a 65,000 sf shell office building in a particular architectural style on a particular piece of property for a given maximum price. No contact with the owner except for publicly asked questions.

 

The RFP required a 2-part submittal. Part 1 had a limited number of pages available. Part 2 had the price proposal and design with unlimited pages.  During our interview, we learned they did not open Part 2 so they really didn’t know our design intent, only our narrative and a few pretty renderings provided in Part 1.  We presented our design and price. Here are 2 of the questions they asked during our interview: How big is the emergency generator; and do you have raised access floor?

 

If those were a requirement, why didn’t you ask for them?  Why did they have a limit on the number of pages for Part 1?  If you wanted the price sealed until after the interview, that alone should have been Part 2.  Agencies/Owners sometimes don’t understand what they are asking for and, not allowing us to discuss the project needs and wants, just wastes a lot of people’s time.

 

By the way, the reason they went to design build is they had been designing this project for 2 years and couldn’t control the design or the budget. They ran out of time so changed to design build so the contractor had all of the responsibility to maintain the budget and design and build this 2 story building over below grade parking in 13 months.

 

Blog submitted by

 

Joe Flemming, FCPE

Certification Committee

Tags:  certification 

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Reverse Auction Bid

Posted By Eric Ross, Monday, August 6, 2018
 

Has anyone experienced Online Reverse Auction Bidding for a construction project?

 

If you have, what was your experience and did you indicate to your employer that this process violates a few of the ASPE Canons ?

 

Eric A. Ross, PE, CPE

Standards Committee

Tags:  standards 

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Never Rush the Basics

Posted By Brian Wright, Thursday, August 2, 2018
 

When a PM says ‘Let’s award to the low bid’

 

Last week a seasoned PM sent 2 bids to me and said this is an easy award to the low bid.  The field had asked for multiple duplex to be installed in a new area.  It was easy right?  One bid was $21k and one was $20K.  I said send them to me and let me take a look.  My Preconstruction training to field personnel of reading the entire bid before having the PM coming to that exclusion had been skipped for a day in the field's haste.

 

One Bid said scope was 7 circuits plus brackets for mounting an owner’s equipment next to each duplex, and the other Bid said 2 circuits and no brackets were included.

 

All too often, when less seasoned Pre Construction Team members get rushed, they skip the basics. Exclusions and scope reading in 10 minutes showed major differences in scope.  Had I allowed the PM to award on this simple extra, the electrician would have completed it with nuisance breaker tripping due to an extreme interpretation of allowing many more than 10 Duplex per circuit-breaker, in fact almost double the high end suggestion in the NEC code.  A subsequent low quality perception by the owner would have resulted possibly swinging them to use another contractor next time.

 

Checking your PMs even on small items results in training opportunities and, in this case, preventing a low quality perception by an important owner.

 

Brian Wright

ASPE NEC Chair

C.P.E. Preconstruction Manager, Sr. Project Manager, M.E., JLL

 

 

Tags:  education 

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Escalations

Posted By Karla Wursthorn, Monday, July 30, 2018
 

Historically, it seems that project escalation averages about 3.5% per year.  In recent years, it has crept up to 4.5-5% per year.  I am seeing a much larger increase in escalation this year, possibly 8-10% which seems to be based on rising material costs and the fact that companies are busy.  What has been your experience?  Are you factoring this into the unit prices or adding this at the bottom of the estimate as an escalation factor or assuming this is part of project contingency? 

 

Karla Wursthorn, CPE

Standards Committee

Tags:  standards 

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Emergency Bid Days

Posted By David Battle, Friday, July 27, 2018
 

I Remember the Bid Days When …

 

Currently I am an Independent Estimator (for 24 years). I remember the 17 years before, working for General Contractors, having the responsibility as Bid Day Bid Captain, our Chief Estimator always preached “consistency.” This means, in other words, every Estimator in the office must utilize the same take-off methods and Bid Day Recap. His reasoning was in case of a medical emergency, stomach sickness, or trouble at the other end, he wanted to “be always prepared” so that another estimator could immediately take over. Fortunately, through all those years, I never had one of those issues. The only time I can remember having an emergency, was a 1:30 pm power failure.  Fortunately, after fast thinking, we ran an extension cord to the warehouse, where we had a job generator stored; and we were able to submit the bid by 2:00 pm as required. Does anyone have any “Emergency Bid Day Stories” they would like to share?  They don’t have to be hilarious, but certainly “smile provoking.”       

 

Blog submitted by

 

David Battle, FCPE

Chair, Certification Committee

Tags:  certification 

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Summit

Posted By Dave Garman, Monday, July 23, 2018
 

I attended the ASPE 2018 Steel City Summit this year in Pittsburgh.  This was the first ASPE Summit I have attended, and I really enjoyed the event. There were great speakers that provided very valuable educational information that I am able to bring back and share with my local ASPE Chapter.  In addition, there were great vendors that had booths providing great information on their products that can be used for estimating.  I also enjoyed meeting many fellow ASPE estimators from all over the country and learning what practices they use when estimating at their companies.

 

Most of all, I enjoyed meeting many of the ASPE Board of Directors who were at the ASPE Summit and learning what they are planning for the future development of ASPE nationally.  You see pictures and names of the ASPE Board of Directors in the Estimating Today Magazine, but it was a great opportunity to meet them in person at Summit and hear about what they are doing and planning for ASPE.  I had a chance to meet and talk with our ASPE National President, Marcene Taylor, CPE; and I think she is doing an outstanding job as President for ASPE.

 

I have been a member of ASPE for many years and, until this year, never attended a Summit.  I realize now what I have been missing out on for the past many years.

 

Even though my flight to Pittsburgh was delayed for two hours after boarding the plane and sitting on the tarmac; and then, when returning home after the ASPE Summit, my flight was canceled three times.  It was my first experience sleeping overnight at the airport, and I still plan to attend the 2019 ASPE Summit in Kansas City! 

 

I highly recommend attending the ASPE Summit and look forward to meeting you in June at the 2019 Kansas City Summit !

 

Dave Garman, CPE

Standards Committee

 

Tags:  standards 

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Deadlines

Posted By Bryan Mixer, Monday, July 16, 2018
 

Does anyone else get annoyed/irked/peeved at family and friends who can never make plans ahead of time, and then are late once plans are made?  How does anyone else get through life and work by ignoring the fact that 2 p.m. Thursday does not mean 3:15 p.m. because "something came up and I lost track of time"?  Sorry, that bid is done, you lose.


In this "instant" world we now live in, does planning and punctuality no longer matter?  Are we not taught these traits, or do we ignore them so much that no one knows how to enforce them? 

 
Think about what would happen if we started enforcing due dates.  Would anybody let their driver's license expire if the penalty was to wait two years to reapply AND your car was impounded?  Would anyone not file their taxes on time if it cost you two months of salary as a penalty?  Would people actually show up at 6:00 pm for a 6:00 pm dinner reservation?

 

Bryan Mixer, CPE

Standards Committee

 

Tags:  standards 

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High Tech Jobsites

Posted By Peter Hamilton, Wednesday, July 11, 2018
 

Technology on the jobsite is ever changing.  Sometimes we jump in and embrace it, and other times we sit back and wait for it to prove its worth.  Is it the estimator’s job to find new technology to bring to our companies?  In almost all cases we are responsible for our project’s overall return, whether it be in the buyout or in establishing our budgets.  With that in mind, what are the current trends in the industry that are making our jobsites higher tech and pushing into the future? Where are you seeing the biggest technology changes in your companies?

 

https://www.conexpoconagg.com/news/april-2018/high-tech-jobsites-are-no-longer-a-thing-of-the-fu/

 

Peter Hamilton, CPE

Education Committee

Tags:  education 

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Members

Posted By Jay Kellogg, Monday, July 9, 2018
 

Being a member of ASPE is an opportunity for all of us to develop relationships that help us as well as each other.  I am fortunate to have the opportunity over the past couple of months to be awarded work from other ASPE members and share work with other ASPE members that I could not otherwise perform.  Please consider the resources that are available to you when you need work as well as when you are not able to complete the work that you are being tasked with.

 

Jay Kellogg, CPE

Standards Committee

Tags:  standards 

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Next Generation Estimator

Posted By Bryan Mixer, Friday, June 22, 2018
 

 

It seems that Project Managers work a 40 or 45-hour week, while Estimators work a 40 hour DAY.  We are expected to spend 8 hours a day pouring over documents and performing take offs; 8 hours a day on the phone talking to Subcontractors (or General Contractors) and Suppliers for bids and pricing; 8 hours in meetings and filling out reports for the PM, accounting, HR, and Business Development; your significant other expects (And deserves!) 8 hours of quality time; and you need to get 8 hours of sleep because it starts all over again tomorrow at 8 am.

 

Any wonder why the Society and the profession is wondering where the next generation is supposed to come from?

 

Let’s work together to find some answers to that question.....

 

Bryan Mixer, CPE

Standards Committee

 

Tags:  standards 

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