Solutions 14.2

We discuss how the vertical integration of design and construction can achieve desired results, and how procurement methods that focus on the product rather than the process create promising opportunities for owners.

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STOP BUYING SERVICES — Start Getting Results

When purchasing design and construction services, it isn’t the service we really want; what we want is a specific end result. The service is just the means of getting to that result. So, why do we feel our only option is to pay fees for multiple services with no guarantee of the actual outcome? This disconnect has been responsible for failures in industries such as healthcare and education, but it is also responsible for many of the failures of the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry.


By moving away from the fee for service model and toward purchasing models more like buying a product than buying a service, clients ahead of the curve are shifting risk away from themselves and placing it in the hands of those more capable of mitigating it. This reassignment of risk is leading to better risk management, lower risk premiums, and overall better results for building developers and owners.


Clients are beginning to recognize that a fee for service model does not motivate the right kind of behavior for designers and builders any more than it does providers in other industries. The transition away from fee for service is leading owners to develop new means of defining and measuring outcomes, and to explore procurement methods which require providers to guarantee a specific result.