Article #256 How to Integrate Quality of Work Done with Interim Payment Certificates for Work in Place on Capital Construction Projects

One of the key challenges that faces capital project owners is how to ensure that what they are paying for completed work in place has been done in accordance with the quality standards set in the project’s specifications. For those project owners, they want to have formal confirmation that the work in place has been formally reviewed and approved by the assigned project quality team members before a payment for this work can be released.

One of the recommended solutions to achieve this objective is to have predefined checklists for each scope of work that details all items that need to be verified before approving any payment milestone. In other words, there will be a list items that will entitle the contractor for X% of the item price included in the Bill of Quantity or Schedule of Values. In addition, the checklist will also include the items that need be verified before that contractor can be entitled for the balance 100-X%. It should be noted that this checklist will not eliminate the use of the Work Inspection Request (WIR) business process that is required to verify that the completed work in place for the different elements of the scope of work was done in accordance with the project’s specifications.

Using a Project Management Information System (PMIS) like PMWeb where both contract management and quality management business processes are managed, monitored, evaluated and reported on the same platform, having those checklists will address the quality verification challenge faced by project owners. Using PMWeb custom form builder, separate checklists will be created for each category of work to be completed on the project and for which payment will become due. Those templates are generic and will be applicable to the complete projects’ portfolio managed by the project owner. A checklist will group items to be verified by the payment milestones set for each category based on the assigned milestone. It is highly recommended to have those checklists as part of the contract documents shared with the contractor to make the contractor aware of the payment terms for work in place.

For example, for a project owner who have water supply and sanitation projects, one of the work items that will be common for their projects is the Pump Chamber for which it will have two payment milestones, the first is at 60% while the second is at the remaining 40%. The first milestone stage will be to complete the pump chamber up to the roof level where it is grouped into work items up to the plinth level and the work items for the roof level.

As for the second milestone it will be for work items needed for the completion and finishing of the pump chamber. For each item in the checklist, the individual responsible for verifying that the listed work items were done or not, will select the status value as “Yes”, “No” or “NA” if it was not applicable. Remarks against each verified item can be also added if needed.

Documents and pictures of verified work items need to be attached to checklist to provide the additional support to what has been reported. Pictures and videos can be added directly to the checklist if the individual is using a smart mobile device that has those features. Comments can be added for those supportive pictures and other documents attached to the checklist. In addition, there is the option to link other related PMWeb records to the checklist such as submittal and work inspection requests transactions.

Since the checklist will be the basis for determining the amount of payment a contractor will be entitled to, it is highly recommended to assign a workflow to the checklist to capture the review and approval details of the checklist. PMWeb workflow will capture the details of all those individuals who were part of the review and approval process, action take, date and time of taken action and any remarks or comment made on the review and approval tasks.

About the Authorfounder

Bassam Samman, PMP, PSP, EVP, GPM is a Senior Project Management Consultant with 40-year service record providing project management, project controls services and project management information system to over than 200 projects with a total value in excess of US $100 Billion. Those projects included Commercial, Residential, Education and Healthcare Buildings and Infrastructure, Entertainment, Hospitality and shopping malls, Oil and Gas Plants and Refineries, Telecommunication and Information Technology projects. He is thoroughly experienced in complete project management including project management control systems, computerized project control software, claims analysis/prevention, risk analysis/management (contingency planning), design, supervision, training and business development.

Bassam is a frequent speaker in topics relating to Project Management, Strategic Project Management and Project Management Personal Skills. Over the past 40 years he has lectured at more than 350 events and courses at different locations in the Middle East, North Africa, Europe and South America. He has written more than 500 articles on project management and project management information systems that were featured in international and regional magazines and newspapers. He is a co-founder of the Project Management Institute- Arabian Gulf Chapter (PMI-AGC) and has served on its board of directors for more than 6 years. He is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) from the Project Management Institute (PMI), a certified Planning and Scheduling Professional (PSP) and Earned Value Professional (EVP) from the Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering (AACE) and Green Project Management (GPM).

Bassam holds a Masters in Engineering Administration (Construction Management) with Faculty Commendation, George Washington University, Washington, D.C., USA, Bachelor in Civil Engineering – Kuwait University, Kuwait and has attended many executive management programs at Harvard Business School, Boston, USA and London Business School, London, UK.


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