Investigating the Effect of Front-End Planning in Fast-Track Delivery Systems for Industrial Projects
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Numerous research studies to date have been conducted to examine the processes and effectiveness of Front-End Planning. However, very little is known about the impact of the “level” of Front-End Planning to the cost, schedule and change order performance, specifically for Fast-track Delivery Systems for Industrial projects. This study aims to address this issue by investigating correlation between the Front-End resource allocation and project performance, simultaneously comparing the Design-Build and Construction Manager at Risk delivery systems to the baseline traditional Design-Bid-Build system. The data used for statistical analysis were obtained from the Construction Industry Institute through a Project Level Survey conducted in 2009. The data compiled into a Benchmarking & Metrics database was used by this study for statistical analysis. 439 Industrial projects from both the Light and Heavy Industrial sectors were analyzed during this research. Spearman’s correlation analysis was performed to test the relationship between the “level” of FEP and project performance and Kruskal Wallis test was used to compare the different delivery systems in terms of their performance. Results from the statistical analysis revealed that Design-Build projects with higher level of FEP performed more effectively considering cost and change metrics, whereas the level of FEP in CM-at-Risk projects exhibited a strong relationship with schedule performance. FEP was more effective in Design-Build cost performance because of the collaboration between the designer and the builder in the early phases of the project resulting in accurate estimations and minimized likelihood of major change orders. The Guaranteed Maximum Price ensured in the CM-at-Risk system, hinders the effect of FEP on its cost performance. This study is expected to encourage more effort into the Front-End of the project and could become a decision making tool for project participants on the choice of delivery systems in Industrial projects. This thesis study recommends Design-Build as the ideal delivery system for Industrial projects and for the implementation of Front-End Planning, based on statistical evidence.
Radhakrishnan Nair Sindhu, Jayakrishnan (2016). Investigating the Effect of Front-End Planning in Fast-Track Delivery Systems for Industrial Projects. Master's thesis, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from