1. Running an integrated project
The purpose of this walkthrough is to help you to understand how an Integrated Project Team (IPT) should be assembled and empowered to work collaboratively to deliver in an integrated environment.
Key activities or terms which are of particular significance are highlighted to help you to pick them up.
If you are responsible for initiating this activity, this walkthrough will help you to understand what to do. If you are likely to become part of an IPT, this walkthrough will help you to understand what others will be trying to achieve and will be expecting from you.
2. What is an integrated supply chain?
Are you familiar with the concept of assembling integrated supply chains and applying those chains in an integrated project environment?
If not, you may want to run the audiovisual presentation which provides an overview.
Alternatively you can read an introduction which explains some of the reasons why integration is so important.
3. What is an IPT?
Although the maximum benefit is on offer if you assemble an IPT from established integrated supply chains, an IPT can successfully deliver with an appropriate team assembled for the sole purpose of the project.
Are you clear about what an integrated project team is? Go to the Integrated Project Teams workbooks home page. This page shows you the IPT process laid out as individual workbooks.
Open Workbook 0 and see the definition of an IPT, the process as a complete cycle and a brief explanation of each of the process stages explained in detail in the individual workbooks.
4. Identifying business need
Now you can begin with Workbook 1.
Workbook 1 is simple yet crucial. It says that the starting point is to identify the business need to be satisfied, without translating this into a facility solution, which most people/organisations find very hard not to do.
Establishing the need is the responsibility of the ‘client‘ in the IPT process, i.e. the group or individual who is commissioning the project and paying the costs.
5. The advisory team
With the need identified, move on to Workbook 2. This recommends that an advisory team should be assembled to translate the business need into physical requirements.
Workbook 2 covers the role of the advisory team, which is to interrogate the need to fully understand what benefit is being sought and to explore ways of providing that benefit. One of the key steps is to confirm that a built solution is necessary.
Construction-related activities are generally expensive, time-consuming and disruptive to normal business activity, and one of the most important services that the UK construction industry can provide is to ensure that clients do not embark on built solutions unless they are essential to meet the identified need. For this reason the advisory team should include internal representatives who understand the business requirements and external representatives who are experienced in delivering built solutions and have the skills to translate between the two different environments.
The team will create the Strategic Brief, which is the translation of the need and benefits into high-level physical requirements. The team will also determine and prioritise the value criteria to be used to assess options and evaluate success.
Finally, the advisory team must confirm that this is a need which is best satisfied by an IPT approach.
6. The core team (1 of 2)
With the Strategic Brief and value criteria established, a core team can now be formed to consider potential solutions.
Go to Workbook 3 to find guidance on how to pull this team together. This workbook recommends that those clients who have established supply chains should call in partners from those chains. It does however, recognise that not all clients have established supply chains and indeed that many clients are occasional users of the construction industry. For these clients it is recommended that an independent client adviser is appointed; that is, an adviser who is a committed advocate of the IPT approach and has a track record for integrated working in a collaborative environment. If you do not know such a person, your Constructing Excellence best practice clubs can help you in finding an appropriate individual in your area.
The workbook offers some suggestions on how to assemble a pool of preferred suppliers for those with regular construction activity.
For more guidance on assembling and using supply chains, see the Integrated Supply Chains workbooks.
7. The core team (2 of 2)
The core team should be assembled from those organisations likely to have significant involvement at any stage of the process, including subsequent operation and maintenance of the end product. They should be appointed at commencement with the expectation that they will be involved all the way through until the Strategic Brief is met, the need is satisfied and the benefits delivered and proven.
This commitment and early involvement are fundamental to the success of the IPT. They afford individuals and companies the opportunity to gain visibility of the whole project, to participate in the decision-making process and to utilise their experience to identify better solutions which eliminate waste in time, effort and money (both investment capital and future operating revenue).
This involvement assures buy-in and ownership of the objectives, solutions and any problems which arise during the process and is the primary reason that the IPT approach outperforms historic methods.
8. Strategic solutions
Workbook 3 provides guidance on how to assemble the core team, specifically selecting the appropriate people, and how the get the team into action, including appropriate values and behaviours, team dynamics and the appropriate procedural arrangements (e.g. remuneration and issues resolution). The workbook takes the IPT team to the selection of strategic solutions to be taken forward for evaluation in Workbook 4.
Workbook 4 shows how to expand the core team to evaluate the strategic solutions and select the appropriate solution to take forward into implementation. Guidance on how to grow the team without losing direction and momentum is provided.
9. Implementation of the agreed solution
Next on to Workbook 5. Quite simply this is making it happen, implementing the solution that has been collectively developed and bought into by the whole team.
This workbook provides guidance on the behaviours and attitudes, methods and attributes that are needed to keep the team focused on the common goals and objectives which will ensure delivery of the agreed end product and the creation of value for all parties. It identifies how openly sharing all the information, issues, learning and achievements creates the culture in which a successful project will be delivered.
In particular the workbook explains how a single shared budget leads to financial success in the IPT environment. This workbook provides guidance on how to manage expectations (using a client care team), deal with change and create a safe, enjoyable and empowered, performance-focused working environment.
10. Project proving
Workbook 6 is all about confirming the objectives have been met. This workbook suggests that the client care team assembled during implementation should remain in direct contact with the client/customers/end users as appropriate until the finished product can be demonstrated to be complete, the objectives as defined in the Strategic Brief met and the expected value delivered.
The client care team should manage the review process and oversee the proving, which should not be confused with the implementation activity of commissioning and testing. The client care team should stay engaged until all the value criteria expected have been proven. This could be weeks or months, or if there are value criteria associated with ongoing operability, such as annual energy consumption targets, engagement could be for years; certainly that would be normal in a PFI-type environment.
Once it is clear that the objectives have been met, the process review step in Workbook 7 should be undertaken. This is a systematic review of each of the previous workbook stages undertaken by a representative group from the IPT, including members of the client’s end users and those responsible for ongoing operation and maintenance. Key to success of this review is a facilitated open discussion and debate aimed at identifying the learning without apportioning blame.
12. Share learning
Workbook 7 suggests that once lessons have been learned they should be shared with the whole team.
In the interest of furthering development of the integrated industry it is also asked that these lessons be fed back to the SFC Toolkit drafting team, using the recommended feedback mechanism.
13. Celebrate success
Finally the success should be celebrated, as this recognises achievement and encourages further advancement in the future, and then the project should be closed. Workbook 7 suggests that closure should be a planned and strategic event. It should not just happen. A clear decision should be made by the team as to whether to disband or to move on collectively or in part to other projects with the same client or different client organisations.
For those clients who do not already have established supply chains, this provides the opportunity to take on an established chain who already know how to work together to deliver superior value.
This completes one life-cycle of an Integrated Project Team.
14. How to learn more
Throughout the Toolkit you will see links to websites offering further guidance, support and/or tools. These have been identified as places to obtain additional assistance and are there to help you to utilise all the learning of the UK construction industry without the need for you to find the links yourself.