EARLY CONTRACTOR INVOLVEMENT

Typically, in the Oil & Gas industry, companies take the design-bid-build approach to project execution. This means the project starts with the engineering firm independently working through design, then moving to a bid process for the fabrication and then build; meaning the fabrication and construction contractor isn’t a part of the project until the end of the design phase. Projects that follow the design-bid-build model usually experience higher costs and schedule delays due to on-site conditions, unexpected requirements, lack of upfront communication or lack of resources due to last minute planning. Purchase of materials at the time of need, at current market rates, can see increases of up to 10% of total project costs. These delays, cost increases and unexpected requirements can severely impact the execution and feasibility of a project. 

Gemini Fabrication works with clients through a process that eliminates most of these challenges: Gemini’s Initiate, Cultivate, Engage (ICE) process or early contractor involvement process. There are many benefits to our ICE process. ICE can lower costs, shorten fabrication schedules, accelerate procurement, improve safety, and provide an overall higher quality execution plan for construction. By having the contractor engaged at an early stage or beginning of design, cohesive insight can be offered into the design and execution of the project. Through following our ICE model we can drastically change project outcomes by eliminating schedule delays, decreasing lead time on materials and gaining a higher overall project ROI. 

Early contractor involvement allows both parties to be on the same page from project conception, therefore the design and construction communication are seamless as we co-create project solutions. Having early alignment on goals creates excitement and team cohesion. While the old bid-buy model creates independent thinking, early contractor involvement promotes a collaboration of team thinking that ultimately optimizes and improves the project process. Collaboration in the early stages, promotes insights from multiple perspectives. This creates a more innovative project planning procedure. In our experience this eliminates unforeseen risks, and helps plan a smooth path for project optimization.

ICE Process:

I – “Initiate” – This is where we work to understand the forecasted market and future opportunities. We work to understand client and project needs, identify potential roadblocks and set overall expectations. Together we set a foundation of trust and add value through our alignment and consulting efforts. 

C – “Cultivate” – Project roadmap creation, by working together and setting goals between the group of companies. We work out solutions to any potential roadblocks. We provide project assessment and consulting, design analysis and even feasibility analysis along with materials planning. Working together at an early stage allows Gemini to strategically source material and prepare our labour force for accelerated project execution.

E – “Engage” – This is where we use our toolkit of innovative systems and approaches to tackle the project workflow, optimizing project ROI. We execute on our roadmap for project excellence and demonstrate our leadership while guiding a more efficient and streamlined project and capitalizing on better project outcomes. 

As design/build often gets moved to direct silos, early collaboration keeps the communication fresh and frequent. Gemini’s ICE can offer insights from past projects, what worked and what to avoid. This challenges the team to find the most effective approach, keep strategies in line and help everyone envision the end goal. Having key stakeholders involved early with a contractor promotes cohesive planning, strategy, and has all parties working to one end goal of a seamless project with a rewarding return on investment. 

Get in touch to see how Gemini can help shape your project and drive efficiency.

By Dain Downs, Director of Business Development, Gemini Fabrication