Article #457 Documenting the Value Engineering Ideas Evaluation During the Creative Phase of Value Engineering Workshops on Capital Construction Projects

Similar to any other business process needed in managing the execution of capital construction projects, documenting value engineering workshops not only will ensure that the process will be performed by the set best practices but more importantly is that the knowledge gained in performing the process will be captured and becomes available to be shared on other projects. In addition, this captured knowledge will provide the organization with the lessons learned to improve the results of future value engineering workshops. This knowledge could become the data needed by artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) platforms for cost optimization of capital construction projects.

The Value Engineering (VE) methodology consists of seven sequential phases. Those are information, function analysis, evaluation, creative, development recommendations, presentation, and finally implementation and follow-up. Each phase has its purpose, objectives, and tasks. For example, the creative phase involves exploring the various ways to perform the function(s) identified in the function analysis phase. This allows team members to brainstorm alternatives to existing systems or methods that are in use. Brainstorming forces people to be creative and allows team members to speculate on all possible ideas to the problems presented or alternatives to the function.

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Using Project Management Information System (PMIS) solutions like PMWeb, the different value engineering business processes, as well as value engineering phases checklists, will be managed as well as associated documents with those processes will be uploaded and stored in PMWeb. This will not only ensure that the value engineering processes are performed as required but also enable monitoring, evaluating, and reporting on the results of each value engineering process. The value engineering ideas analysis and ranking report is one of those examples.

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PMWeb custom form builder will be used to create the value engineering idea evaluation form. The form header will include details on the project, value engineering workshop, date, project phase, and building system. The form will include the workflow status details such as version, date, and status. Additional fields can be added if required.

The form will have three parts. The first is to capture the function that the idea relates to, idea description, and performance attributes evaluation for Mainline Operations, Local Operations, Maintenance, Construction Impacts, Environmental and Schedule. The second section will be the advantages and disadvantages of the idea. The third and last section is the ranking of the idea on a score of 3. Sometimes the ranking is done on a scale of 10.

PMWeb will be also used to create a checklist for the Creative phase to ensure that all information for this phase had been collected or verified. When using the checklist, the individual completing the checklist needs to provide the status of each item as “Yes” it was done, “No” it was not done, or “NA” for Not Applicable. In addition, remarks can be added if needed.

Similar to all types of business processes created using PMWeb, the VE Idea Evaluation form can be also be attached with all supportive documents. Those could include drawings, specifications, equipment catalogs, equipment life cycle costing, pictures among others. In addition, links to PMWeb records for all types of business processes managed in PMWeb can be also added. This could include for example the VE Function Analysis form.

It is highly recommended that all supportive documents, regardless of their type or source, get uploaded and stored on the PMWeb document management repository. PMWeb allows creating folders and subfolders to match the physical filing structure used to store hard copies of those documents. For example, there could be folders for each value engineering workshop with sub-folders for each Building System for which VE Ideas Evaluation was carried out during that value engineering workshop.

For the VE Idea Evaluation form, the individual who has initiated the VE Idea Evaluation can send an email invitation to other individuals to access the form. This would require selecting the record hyperlink as an attachment. Of course, accessing the EV Idea Evaluation form itself requires the individual to be a PMWeb user. For those who are not PMWeb users, the individual issuing the invitation can select the option of sending the VE Idea Evaluation output form in PDF file format. PMWeb has the option to create pre-defined individual lists to ensure that all those who need to be involved are invited. In addition, PMWeb allows sending invitations to specific individuals whether those were PMWeb users or not.

Should there be a requirement to formally submit, review and approve the VE Idea Evaluation form, a workflow can be used to formalize the submission, review, and approval tasks. The assigned workflow will map the submit, review and approve tasks, roles or roles assigned to each task, task duration, task type, and actions available for the task. In addition, PMWeb allows the setting condition to the workflow tasks to enforce the approval authority levels set by the organization if this was a requirement.

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 systems to over 200 projects with a total value over the 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 on 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 300 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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