What Are the Strengths and Weaknesses of the Hilton H-Honors Program?
In 1985 NEDO set out general requirements for the selection of a procurement path and others including Skitmore and Marsden in 1988, Bennett and Grice in 1990 and ELSIE computer system in 1990 sought to assist in making the selection. More recently Morledge and Sharif (1996, a,b) have discussed procurement strategy, summarised procurement options and outlined a process to assist in the selection of the best procurement strategy. Gillespie (1994) questions the extent that rationality plays in procurement selection and suggest that other factors often influence choice.
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Some other researchers suggested the use of fuzzy logic to produce computerised systems to help practitioners (Peak et al. , 1992; Russell, 1992). Turner (1990) provides an assessment of the risk inherent in procurement routes and it can be inferred that this is an important determinant in the route selected. It is known that procurement methods play a major role in defining and shaping contractual and work relationships between parties involved in the construction process.
Therefore, a better understanding of those methods and criteria that practitioners use in their selection is a very important step in enhancing our understanding of the issue. This paper presents the results of a study into criteria of selection for procurement methods used in the construction industry in the UK, and investigates the issue of satisfaction with procurement methods. 2. 2. 1 Background Procurement methods A review of current practices in the UK shows different approaches to the procurement of building projects.
A classification of these approaches is extremely complex because there are not clear and universally accepted definitions of what a particular procurement method is. This raises a major issue in that if there is no accepted definition of what comprises a particular procurement route, the possibility of establishing criteria to achieve specific objectives is problematic, if not remote. McCanlis (1967) pointed out the problems with the traditional descriptors of contractual arrangements but notwithstanding the acknowledged problems, ELSIE (1990) computer system and Masterman (1992) have defined the various procurement routes.
If the characteristics of a procurement route can be identified and the impact of these characteristics upon performance can be measured, then and only then, can the selection of a specific procurement path serve a purpose. 2. 2 Procurement’ criteria for selection The literature review on this issue reveals a wide spectre of reasons put forward for choosing a particular procurement method. Rowlinson & Newcombe (1984), in their research on the impact of procurement methods on performance, produced a table that provides a general overview of the respective characteristics of types of contractual arrangement (see table 1).
This taken with Turner’s risk assessment and that set out in Latham (1994) provides a useful, albeit fairly crude tool. This paper describes research which has attempted to refine these issues and to provide a greater understanding of procurement decisions and needs. Types of Arrangemen t Traditional Arrangemen t Design and Build Measureme nt Prime Cost Price Certainty Fairly good Good Average to poor Poor Level (inc. fees) Low Design Parallel Working No Changes Easy Buildabilit y No Time Before Start Slow Medium Medium High
Yes Yes Yes Difficult Easy Easy Yes No No MediumFast MediumFast Fast Fast Average Medium Yes Easy Yes Separate to poor Mgt Function Table 1: Indication of Characteristics of Types of Contract Arrangement (Source: Rowlinson & Newcombe, 1984) The variables used for selection in this study are: accountability, design input, dissatisfaction with previous process used, knowledge of the process, predictable cost, punctuality, speed of commencement, speed of completion, transference of risk, and working relationships.
Respondents were also given the opportunity to add any further variables that they may see as important in their choice. 3. Methodology A questionnaire was prepared with the objective of obtaining information relating to procurement choice and satisfaction with procurement methods used, among other things. A total of 122 questionnaires were mailed to both clients and consultants of which 64 responses were received, which is a good answer rate (52%). The data was analysed statistically using SPSS for windows.