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Re: Free Help Design Management

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Mike Harvey
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Dear Mark

I am embarking on doing some design management, would appreciate a few guide lines.

Regards

Mike Harvey

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Mark Lomas
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Mike,

finally got round to reading your website paper after visiting PlanningPlanet. Pretty extensive undertaking, good luck ! Having skimmed it, there are a few points I would start with such as your definition of VE and maybe coverage of procurement planning.

Is this a long term venture ? And for the common good ? If the DM SIG ever did get resurrected, this paper would be the sort of product that we should expect from the SIG.
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Dear Mark

Please log on to hpcconsult.co.uk - the design management subject is covered under Educational I would welcome your comments.

Regards

Mike Harvey
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Dear Mark

Please log on to hpcconsult.co.uk - the design management subject is covered under Educational I would welcome your comments.

Regards

Mike Harvey
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Dear Paul

I appreciate your comments and thank you for some sound advice.

Regards

Mike Harvey
Paul Waskett
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Mike

Im kind of new to Planning Planet and have been reading the discussions with interest (and contributing to one or two).

Unlike others Im not in the business of selling advice on design planning and so am happy to offer a nugget of free help.

I agree with others comments that you can think about the key steps in the design planning process in the same way as you would think about planning construction. I also agree that you shouldnt get too hung up on the issue of iteration. However you do have to acknowledge that it is iterative and you can do a couple of simple things to help deal with this. In my experience a complete failure to even accept this iteration exists has lead to big problems.

The crucial iterative bits of design correspond to the bits that need the closest co-ordination and these often involve people from the different design organisations. For example, the architects reflected ceiling plans, services engineers duct/grille/diffuser layouts, electrical engineers lighting layouts, sprinkler engineers layouts, and structural engineers secondary steelwork design all need to be carefully co-ordinated to make the ceilings work. You need to make sure that:

a) these activities are scheduled to take place around the same time if possible to reduce the duration of the iteration/co-ordination.

b) the designers are reminded that their tasks are iterative and they should be in constant communication with other team members to ensure co-ordination is achieved.

This sounds so obvious but its hard to make happen. All to often the mechanical engineer will locate grilles on the ceiling and then put a huge amount of work into designing the connecting ductwork only to realise later that the grilles will have to move because they hadnt been co-ordinated with the lighting - I know because Ive done it!

I hope this helps.

Paul Waskett
Mark Lomas
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Mike,

Would be interested in seeing your paper and collaborating on it. Would you publish it to the site, or send me a copy direct ?

Thanks in advance

Mark
Mike Harvey
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Thankyou for taking the time to respond to my questions on Design Management.

I have since written a paper as a guide to myself and others.

Any comment would be appreciated.

I have not yet turned this into a formalised programme, however, your comments are helpful and this will be my next venture.

My sincere thanks

Mike Harvey

NB I like the idea of resurrecting the Design SIG.
Mark Lomas
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Mike,

Back to your query. As David said, plan it like you would any construction project. And, without giving to much away for free, as we (Meinhardt) too are in business doing this...

Start with what you need to provide the contractor and when (drawings, approvals, permits etc.);
Work out the lead times on all those (with a bit more float for government agencies etc as they are out of your control and a bit less for your own directly employed designers, etc.);
Schedule the information releases / deliverables you need to make (to the client, QS, contractor, etc.);
Schedule the information releases you need to receive (surveys, lease agreements, construction budget, etc.);
This should give you a collection of milestones that need to be achieved.

Decide / estimate how many drawings, specifications etc. you will need to produce for each deliverable;
Estimate the time (in man-days) for each item;
Work in the sequence of design between the different design disciplines;
This should give you a schedule that you can apply resources to. Review this against your available resources, do some resource levelling etc. Throw in the sexier stuff such as risk and value management at appropriate stages (and give yourself time to redesign afterwards).

Publish said programme and get buy-in from anyone who is involved in any activity in the programme.

There are a few more things you need to do, obviously, but this is outline.

How to control the design if it’s not in your remit ? Don’t ! Just be very clear on what you expect from it and when.

How to measure progress ? How much control do you want ? Or is it just for reporting purposes ? Once you have a schedule, you can draw a simple time-now down it to show progress.

Or you can measure weekly / monthly progress per task, per deliverable, whatever.
Mark Lomas
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David,

Thanks for picking that one up from Mike. Did I miss it whilst the forums were down ?

Anyway, I agree with your points. I did try and get in touch with the UK SIG, but to no avail.

If you do get it resurrected, let me know, Ill be interested to participate (long distance of course).

Mark
David Bordoli
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Mark...

Apologies if my reply seems a bit woolly but I am in the business of selling design planning and management so I dont want to give too many of my secrets away.

Really it’s all about confidence and applying the same principals as you would with a hard construction plan. Those that are doubters (or who wish to rubbish design planning) always use the iterative card or say that you cant put a time on creative endeavour in the same way that you can building a brick wall.

Its just that we are familiar with brick wall so when we say 50 bricks an hour we really mean something between 30 and 70 most of the time.

Swings and roundabouts and all that. You can use a rule of thumb, say for instance 3 days to produce an A1 drawing and 1 day for an A3 sketch (just examples dont quote me!). Use the designers drawing schedule to calculate a ball park figure.

A good stating place is to use the RIBA plan of work. Despite criticisms most Architects are familiar with it and it lays down some good ground rules and cuts the design project into reasonable lumps.

Don’t get hung up on iteration. If you are really interested in that you could invest your life savings in Planweaver from BIW (I cant remember the address but do a UK search on planweaver or adept). Most designers are experienced and know where the big iterations are and they make allowances to cope. You can plan iterations if you want, obviously not by putting loops in your plan, but by creating a few start/check/feedback/update strings.

Are you a member of the APM, its only £100 a year? They have a design management SIG and I am trying to get it revitalised. It seems to have been dormant for a few years, I have made contact with the chair and we should be talking any day now about having an open meeting to sort out the direction of the group.

And finally... an advertisement. Buro Four are an independent project management consultancy with a strong emphasis on planning. We are the leading supplier of Design Planning and Management services in the UK. Please feel free to contact me at dbordoli@burofour.co.uk or visit our website Buro Four Website

Best regards
David
Mike Harvey
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Dear Mark

What are the basics for setting up a programme say for the construction of a project with a duration of 2 years where the design has a six to nine month lead in and is critical to the procurement and construction process.

How do you control the design if it is not part of your remit, however, consequence of delay to design will impact the construction process.

With design being so iterative by its very nature how do you measure progress in a manner that is meaniful to both designers and contractor - the designers idea of progress may not be what is expected by the contractor.

Regards

Mike Harvey
HP Consult
Mark Lomas
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Sorry for the delay, we all need holidays sometime !

Opening gudelines would be to do a bit of information collecting, are you after:
1. Help, I’ve got to manage this design, where do I start ? or
2. I have a 50 million sterling hospital to design in 12 months, how many architects should I have and working on what ?
What is your background and experience (particularly outside your own discipline) ?

You can email me privately, but public postings would help more people