For the novice FM, or even those well experienced (but not in construction related activities), the task of planning an office renovation can be unsettling. These projects can be plums for the FM with kudos to follow; if completed successfully. Here are some important steps to scope the job out.
How can I ensure that my renovations are done properly and thoroughly?
· Set up a meeting with your client or corporate designate who is requesting the renovation and carefully document all the details at this meeting.
· Collect the details in a Scope Document. You can design this yourself. State the purpose of the renovations; justification; who is involved; target dates and next steps.
· Confer with another FM colleague who has experience in planning a renovation. Let them review your scope document.
· When the draft is complete send it to your client for approval or amendment. Once the document is approved, and you have a solid plan, the next steps can begin.
· Create a weekly updated report to cover the renovation progress. Communication is vital to your overall success and will help squash too many surprises!
Further Steps - Once Scope Document is Complete:
· If you do not have contractors listed with your company (purchasing department), you can do a web search or contact another FM colleague for any contacts. Do your homework; source reviews of these firms and check the Better Business Bureau as well.
· Contact references for whom the contractor has done work. They generally list their prime clients on their webpage.
· Develop a list of at least 3 contractors. If your renovation is costly, engage your Finance department on how they recommend proceeding to get the best competitive pricing and final awarding.
· Setup a walk-through with the contractors. You can have them all there reviewing at the same time.
· The contractors will be a great aid in scoping because of their experience as they will tell you exactly what needs to be done.
· Set a date for their submissions. Make sure you request detailed pricing and any advice needed for by-law permits and any other possible legalities.
· Collect the submissions on the closing date.
· To review their bids, open them with another associate and award to the bid to the contractor with the clearest understanding of the project and best price.
· Now you will need to report back to the client your findings and begin compiling a project team for future moving of offices; cabling; phones etc. so that the area can be available for renovation.
· Do set weekly meetings and write the minutes or have the contractor do so.
· Take their lead on the scale of the job as far as building plans; mechanical and electrical consultants and working drawings. After all, they should have the knowledge.
· It is up to the FM to keep up to date on all portions of the renovations to keep within budget. There is a cost to not being thorough, and that can be far more onerous!
Written by: Dave Ball
Senior Facilities Manger