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    Procurement Life Cycle: A Growing Trend in AEC

    The triple bottom line concept holds that performance should not be judged on financial measures only. Both environmental and social sustainability should be considered equally as important as economic performance measures.  As this concept continues to take hold and clients put more emphasis on sustainable development, balancing these performance measures will pose significant challenges for the industry.

    As clients begin to take environmental sustainability seriously, then they will require procurement and policy procedures to ensure that key performance criteria for sustainable construction are defined, specified and incorporated both into the selection criteria for project participants and also into contractual documents.

    A presentation on “Procurement Reform by the International Federation of Consulting Engineers (FIDIC)” at the GAMA Conference Khartoum in April 2013 emphasizes the role of the consulting engineer the life cycle cost and its impact on project success, calling consultant selection “crucial” to the success of sustainable development.

    FIDIC advocates for quality based selection of consulting engineers based on principles such as:

    • Application of international procurement and business best practice.
    • Application of systematic procurement procedures to the procurement of engineering and building contracts for projects of all sizes and complexity.
    • In all phases of the project life-cycle, overriding concern should be the quality of the services provided by all parties.

    While public buildings are leading the sustainable development movement in the US, the trend is continuing to spread to the private sector and is already well entrenched in many parts of the world.  Industry leaders are having sustainable design discussions as part of their strategic planning process and putting together action plans to make the operational changes needed to support the life cycle cost perspective in the design and construction of these projects.