Consultant’s recommendations suggest enhanced management accountability and controls
Ottawa Construction News staff writer
The City of Ottawa has received a consultant’s report with recommendations on how to avoid a recurrence of problems that have plagued the Airport Parkway pedestrian/cycling bridge project, which is still not complete after several years, and likely will consume significant resources in litigation claims.
The report, prepared by SEG Management Consultants Ltd. and released on Feb. 14, includes seven recommendations. These are outlined here:
Recommendation 1: Schedule management
That a project schedule be prepared by the (project manager) and that policies and procedures on schedule management be included in the ISD PDM2013 document to provide guidance and resources to project managers. It should be linked to the risk management process so that projects identified with a high schedule risk profile have an increased level of schedule management effort.
Recommendation 2: Communication management
That a communication protocol be established in the project charter. The protocol would
establish formal and informal communication links and strategies applicable to the project.
That communication with elected officials is co-ordinated through a dedicated team within IS (Infrastructure Services Department). The use of an inquiry process is established to ensure response times meet the needs of Council and that consistent information is delivered from ISD.
Recommendation 3: Design
That ISD monitor compliance with policy and procedures for the management of consultant contracts and constructability reviews.
That the City link payments to consultants with deliverables required by contract.
Recommendation 4: Construction
That “constructability risk” is included in the risk management process and template. Consider pre-qualification of suppliers as a mitigation measure.
Recommendation 5: Project management
That ISD provide input to project milestones during the EA (environmental assessment) process in advance of the PIF (project intake form) or scoping process and/or establish design and construction delivery standards that can be used as guidelines during the EA process.
That ISD develop a quality system to monitor compliance to project management processes, including the “no surprises” provision of the ISD PDM2013.
That ISD provide additional guidance to (project managers) on the management of consultant contracts.
That ISD establish more rigorous policies and procedures for contract management. Contract administration and inspection procedures are addressed in the ISD project delivery manual however there is limited guidance to (project managers) on how to deal with contract defaults, schedule management, insurance and bonding, and claims management.
That the risk management process be required throughout the life cycle of a project to permit the transfer of critical information between project phases and ensure that high-risk issues are being reported and addressed at the appropriate management level.
That ISD provide clear direction on the expectations of project managers in adherence to policy, directives, guidelines, procedures, processes and forms.
That ISD ensure that all staff assigned project management duties are assigned PM accountability.
That ISD continue to evolve its project management processes and to integrate best practices and principles from PMI (Project Management Institute).
Recommendation 6: Performance management
That ISD establish key performance indicators (KPI) that track project and contract performance particularly in the two key areas of schedule and cost.
Recommendation 7: Project authority
That ISD maintain the principle of full authority for project managers, but that this authority is within the context of the project scope, budget and schedule established in the project charter. Changes must then be escalated within ISD to the appropriate level.
Recommendation 8: Contract default
That ISD in conjunction with Supply Branch refine policies and procedures to effectively deal with contract defaults beyond the current use of liquidated damages.
Recommendation 9: Supplier performance
That the Vendor Performance System currently under development includes a provision for assessment of contractor performance during the work to be used as means of communication for performance expectations with consequences for future bid opportunity.
You can view the complete report at the City of Ottawa’s website: