Integrated project delivery (IPD) is a project delivery approach that integrates people, systems, business structures and practices into a process that harnesses the insights of all participants. This approach strives to optimize project results while increasing value to the owner, reducing waste, and efficiency through all phases of construction.
IPD is beneficial for multiple projects. However, it is not a one-size-fits-all approach. There needs to be consideration of the project’s characteristics, the organization’s needs and capability, and the environment in which it will be delivered to determine if this approach will be effective.
Heralded by AIA National and AIA California Council as an approach that allows team members to achieve their highest potentials while expanding the value they provide throughout the project lifecycle, the method creates a tool for owners, designers, and builders to help move towards more integrated models and improved design, construction and operation processes.
Difference between IPD and Traditional Construction Management
IPD improves the traditional construction management structure by facilitating collaboration, so information can be openly shared. The IPD team has more incentives to work together and to do what is best for the project rather than what is best for themselves because their individual success is tied to the overall project’s success and the risks are shared among the team members.
One of the biggest differences between traditional construction management and IPD is the order of events. Typically, the building design, cost, and timing are decided before the constructors are chosen. When following the IPD approach, the constructors are decided on before the project is designed and before the project budget and timeline are set in place. This way, key stakeholders including the owner, general contractor, and architect are brought together to facilitate discussion earlier on in the project. The goal is for the key stakeholders to understand the owner’s goals, vision, and dreams. Once this is established, the tone is set for the project and discussion can start.
The team can incorporate construction knowledge with the design’s team expertise and services to ensure project design, budget and schedule meet the owner’s requirements from the beginning. Having these plans set early on can help eliminate changes during construction, which often can cause costly delays.
By bringing everyone together, conversations start early about the project to plan pre-construction services and construction services. With the owner’s expectations known, the key stakeholders can work together to meet the goal.
If done correctly, IPD will achieve behavioral alignment with all parties, enhancing the collaborative environment and increasing overall project delivery success.
IPD can excel construction management while reducing waste, cutting costs and improving productivity.