Key Takeaways

Design-build benefits:
  • Single Point of Accountability: One entity is responsible for all project phases, enhancing efficiency and communication.
  • Project Continuity: Seamless integration of design and construction phases reduces inefficiencies and speeds up completion.
  • Collaborative Expertise: Early collaboration of diverse specialists ensures a holistic project approach and potentially better outcomes.
  • Cost and Time Efficiency: Streamlined processes often result in faster completion and lower overall costs.
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Getting ready to build a commercial or industrial project can be nerve-wracking, especially if it’s a big project. You likely have many architectural firms, construction firms, contractors, and subcontractors to select from, each that may contribute to the overall project. However, managing these separate entities can be a challenge in itself. 

The design-build method is an alternative to the traditional design-bid-build project delivery method in construction projects that is quickly gaining popularity. This process simplifies everything for the project owner, who can enter into a single agreement with the design-build general contractor, who will handle all of the details in the project’s design and construction phases. This includes coordination with the design team, build team, and all contractors required to complete the project. 

There are multiple benefits to working with a design-build firm, including the following: 

You only have to work with one entity that manages all team members

The design-build general contractor is working toward the goal of successful project completion. To do this, the firm will work with the design team at the beginning of the project while also preparing the site for construction. The design-build general contractor manages all team members throughout the project, making things much easier for the project owner. 

The design-build general contractor has complete accountability for all phases of the project

Whether the project is still in the design process or has moved to the construction process, you have one entity responsible for the entire project. Everything from the quality and integrity of the design to the finished project, total costs, and completion time fall on the design-build contractor. This firm can streamline processes to meet project deliverables and make necessary changes. They can update the owner of any changes or adjustments to facilitate communication and reduce the chances of miscommunication. 

There is project continuity from start to completion of the project

While this benefit may seem insignificant, many project owners may be surprised at the efficiency and effectiveness achieved by project continuity. The design and construction phases are streamlined and dovetailed so that more parts of the project are completed in tandem, which can significantly reduce inefficiencies and speed up the time to completion. 

You can bring many minds together on one project at the outset

When the design and construction teams work together from project inception, you often have a holistic view of the project. And another benefit is that you bring expertise from multiple fields to provide input from the earliest stages of the project, which often results in a better-finished project. These professionals draw from formal training and years of expertise in a way that often positively impacts the budget. Additionally, you can also leverage existing relationships with subcontractors with a great reputation. When the entire team is comprised at the start, it’s often much easier to develop a path to success using all the resources at their disposal.

There is a reduced need for owner involvement

Many project owners want to be highly involved at the start of a project, but they may want to avoid the responsibility of coordinating minute details. After all, many of them have other roles and run a company while the new project unfolds. When you work with a design-build general contractor, the owner can get updates on key project goals, changes to the scope or timeline of the project, and key budget information without having to be involved in the daily management of the project site. The owner is empowered to make key decisions without draining their time. This benefit ensures the owner is still satisfied with the finished project but has fewer headaches and more time to devote to their business. 

They often incorporate best practices throughout the entire process

With the design-bid-build delivery method, many aspects of the project are disjointed, leaving the project owner with little guidance about the best way to move forward, especially if they encounter any challenges. With design-build general contractors, you have an experienced team to guide you through the project. This removes the stress, chaos, and confusion about the process and often leaves you with expert advice for the best possible outcome. After all, these professionals have tons of experience in build projects and likely have best practices for all possible scenarios that may arise throughout the design and construction of the project. 

You can often get the building completed faster

The design-bid-build process breaks each portion of the project into a separate sub-project. And unfortunately, many project owners don’t understand which aspects of the project can occur concurrently. However, design-build construction aggregates all of these timelines and coordinates them for maximum efficiency. Additionally, the owner can make major decisions, ask questions, and get real-time feedback on any changes or unanticipated hiccups with the project. This construction delivery method is more adaptive and responsive, which minimizes the time it takes to complete the project – and that means the project owner can start utilizing the new building faster than they would otherwise, which is a huge resource efficiency for the company. 

Design-build general contractors can often deliver a building at a lower cost

Not only does the design-build construction method lead to time savings, but it also generally results in cost savings. After all, since the project is completed faster, you don’t have some contractors waiting around for another component of the project to be completed. You are maximizing their efficiency and collaboration, which costs less. Additionally, there are fewer change orders, and as change orders can be expensive, fewer can result in cost savings. Working with a design-build contractor is a great way to get more for your project dollars.

As you can see, there are many reasons for the growing popularity of the design-build construction delivery method. This method often enhances communication, reduces errors, maximizes efficiency and efficacy, and improves coordination. These benefits can result in a better-finished project that saves time and money – and who wouldn’t want that?!