PMCs Add Tangible Value

Jenny Malem
Throughout the Middle East region, informed clients are empowering dynamic and experienced Project Management Consultancies (PMCs) to represent their interests and act as the point of contact on their project.

 Why should a property developer use a PMC?

Throughout the Middle East region, informed clients are empowering dynamic and experienced Project Management Consultancies (PMCs) to represent their interests and act as the point of contact on their project.

  • The PMC enables the client to concentrate on core business, without diverting key resources, and keeping staffing levels low.

  • The PMC ensures cost certainty throughout the project life. The project budget is updated, becoming more accurate as the design moves from concept to fully detailed.

  • The PMC protects the client's interests. The PMC's specialised expertise includes establishing a procurement and contractual framework for the project; providing experienced mitigation of contractors' claims, and maintaining the project contemporary record in support of this.

  • The PMC brings industry-leading project controls, systems and procedures to the project. These control changes and variations, manage payments to various parties, establish and track the flow of correspondence, and manage and track the approvals processes and drawing issues.

  • The PMC's risk management expertise results in formal risk identification and evaluation processes, leading to innovative strategies for mitigation or avoidance. The PMC also ensures that potential additional cost and time is budgeted for in the project planning.

  • PMCs bring significant intellectual capital to the project. Particularly when utilised early in the design process, value engineering and constructability input result in significant savings in time and cost.

  • Clients avoid staff cost over-runs at the end of a project when staff demobilisation typically lags behind actual progress on site. Staffing changes determined by the needs of the project are easily accommodated by a PMC.

For maximum benefits, clients should aim to:

  • Clearly understand what they are trying to achieve on the project, and define the timescale. Communicate this to the potential PMC via written scope statements and interviews. Define what is known and what is unknown on the project. A PMC can be engaged to create this RFP on the client's behalf.

  • Select a PMC based on: the proven ability of key lead personnel; experience of similar projects; knowledge of local conditions; understanding of the project and its complexities, and finally and least importantly, on price.

  • Get a PMC onto the project early. Consider including them in the development of the scope and feasibility of the project. The PMC will add focus and direction, establishing target project milestones and formulating a project management plan.

  • Fix the PMC's price for given project duration and scope, allowing flexibility over project methodology and staffing levels.

  • Establish and maintain the PMC's position of authority on the project, promoting open lines of communication with the client team. Define the boundaries of the PMC's authority, the PMC's deliverables, measures of success, and the client's expectations.

Is there a role for PMCs? Absolutely. Following global trends in other industries where outsourcing is so prevalent, smart property developers will subcontract the specialist management of all or parts of their projects, and the risks associated with it, to competent professionals. Good PMCs shouldn't cost their clients money. They should make demonstrable, measurable and tangible savings in excess of the fees charged.

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