2.3 Importance of Time, Cost, Quality and Processes & Systems

We have universally accepted the triangle of Time, Cost and Quality, now read about how the fourth dimension of Processes & Systems is aligned to the project. Also understand how these 4 parameters are valued at each of 22 organizations.

Picture depicts Optical illusion of a staircase, wherein all four parameters are moving in one direction, meaning Time, Cost, Quality and Processes & Systems compliments each other for the success of the project.

Illustrated below the Contribution of processes and systems for the activities of Time, Cost and Quality, showing details required, inputs from multiple teams and monitoring & controlling from senior authorities.

Time: Creation of schedule with inputs from all concerned and approval from top authority. Guidelines for every team member to adhere to a defined schedule for contributing as per their role & responsibilities. Monitoring the schedule and understanding it’s effect on subsequent activities and ultimately identifying the pain areas. Lastly sharing the details with senior authorities for controlling the variations in timelines and sharing action plans defined by seniors to address concerns, if any.

Cost: Creating a budget by addressing all required parameters for the project with detailed inputs from relevant team leaders. Sharing the budget with concern leaders followed by Monitoring the budget and notifying the variation to concern authorities. Controlling the budget by not only evaluating the expenses & new contracts but also by introducing the value engineering aspects as well as technological innovations.

Quality: As everyone is aware that quality products are difficult to build but if documented processes & systems (For example: Quality manual, Assurance and Control) are followed diligently with monitoring and control from senior management then it is possible to develop. Quality product helps in creating a brand value because it improves life span of the product thereby reducing the recurring, maintenance expenses.

Apart from the triangle of Time, Cost and Quality, other project parameters (Safety, Environment, resource management, procurement) are important and can be streamline with proper processes and systems in the organization. Hence processes and systems fit as the fourth dimension to the universally accepted triangle of Time, Cost and Quality.

Processes & systems are foundation of professional approach which brings in transparency and determine responsibilities & authorities and if the organization is inclined towards profit only then quality takes a back seat. Similarly if organization focuses on brand value means quality product, then cost and timelines are affected. 

Generally it is observed that National and International firms are known for high levels of professionalism due to decade’s of learning and experiences which often gets modified with time, innovation and technologies.

In section 1, we have discussed 22 organizations and respective key areas, here we will see the importance of processes & systems, time, cost and quality in each organization.

Organization’s targets are based on business strategies, hence the defined outcome of organization is a deciding factor in determining the importance of processes & systems. time, cost and quality.

Generally, Services organizations have importance for processes & systems, however precast yard & RMC plants focus more on quality, whereas ownership based organization’s target are timelines and cost. 

Abstract of general sequence for Quality (Q), Time (T), Cost (C) And Processes & Systems (P&S) in 22 Organizations

Ownership based1234
Local CTQP&S
Infrastructure CompaniesP&SQC
Industrial InstitutesTQP&SC
Private InstitutesQP&STC
Financial InstitutesP&SCTQ
Research InstitutesQP&SCT
Educational InstitutesP&SQTC
Software OrganizationsP&SQTC
Manufacturing OrganizationsCP&SQT
11 Services based1234
Local CTQP&S
Project Management ConsultantP&SQTC
Construction ManagerP&SCQT
Development ManagerP&STQC
Cost Management ConsultantP&SCTQ
Property Management ConsultantP&STQC
Structural ConsultantQP&SCT
Liaisoning ArchitectsTQP&SC
2 Specialized Fields
Precast Yard & RMCQP&SCT

Following are organization wise observations, which may differ due to varied circumstances, situations and strategies.  

Ownership based organization’s attention on construction activities varies as per their core business strategies, ultimately resulting in having different perspectives towards processes & systems, time, cost and quality. 

As per priorities general sequence for Time, Cost, Quality and Processes & Systems are indicated for each organization.

Developers: The target is profitability of the project, which is important for the growth of the business. To achieve desired profitability, time plays an important role, accelerating the project handover leads to additional profit by reducing not only overheads but also limiting the increase in expenses based on inflation/escalation in project cost.

Every organization has different levels of Importance to factors, such as cost (Varies from Project to Project based on location, construction cost/ sale price/quantum of sales/% of lease/ operational charges), Quality (Based on company policies/project specifications) and Processes & Systems  (Based on brand value, mainly large organizations and International players)

Local Level : Cost, Time, Quality and Processes & Systems

National Level : Quality, Processes & Systems, Cost and Time.

International Level : Processes & Systems, Quality, Time and Cost. 

Infrastructure Companies:  Ownership based firms own the projects for a longer period hence importance on processes and systems. Quality product reduces recurring/maintenance cost and helps in creating/ improving an image/brand value. Project timelines are important, as an early or timely completion of a project brings in revenue as per project parameters or as per business strategy. Monitoring and controlling team focuses on cost parameters and tries to address desired changes (+ / -) by introducing new technology, innovating solutions benefiting project cost. 

General sequence : Processes & Systems, Quality, Time and Cost.

Industrial Institutes:  Organizations are catering to their requirements of infrastructure and building structures for their business. Early or timely completion of construction activities are important from the point of view of commencement of operations and generating revenues. Quality construction is also important, as it’s not only helping the durability of the structure but also minimizes/reduces maintenance cost. Quality helps to improve the productivity timelines of a particular unit by avoiding partial shutdown for rectification works. Cost as well as processes & systems are dependent on the team’s contribution based on knowledge & experience for selecting resources as per defined specifications and design brief. 

General sequence: Time, Quality, Processes & Systems and Cost

Private Institutes: Main aim is to have a unique product for which cost is least important.  They hire the best team for enhancing brand image and quality is of prime importance. Team believes in processes & systems to define responsibilities and accountability for delivering creative structure in defined timelines. 

General Sequence : Quality, Processes & Systems, Time and Cost 

Financial Institutes: Although the institute’s main aim is to earn money through profitability in the projects and for which they rely on processes and systems. Time will be monitored as per defined schedule and hence Quality is last on priority. 

General Sequence : Processes & Systems, Cost, Time and Quality 

Research Institutes: Target is quality in research and the team is not directly connected to cost and timelines but dependent on processes and systems for desired outcome. Research Institutes are known for innovations,trials, experiments and final products with all pros and cons of all resources used in the construction industry. They often take help of the latest technologies to make research more effective. 

General Sequence :  Quality, Processes & Systems, Cost and Time

Educational Institutes: Believe in processes & systems and quality products are important to showcase the world and hence cost and timelines are least concern, however timelines need to be adhere to achieve desired results.

General Sequence :  Processes & Systems, Quality, Time and Cost 

Software Organizations: In this technology advanced world, a number of construction software organizations are contributing a lot in the construction industry and quality products are only in demand which helps in enhancing transparency, effectiveness and efficiency. Software organizations mostly rely on accuracy and zero tolerance. To develop defect free software, quality plays an important role and it will be achieved through processes & systems.  Timelines are important to manage competitions. 

General Sequence :  Processes & Systems, Quality, Time and Cost 

Manufacturing Organizations: Construction engineering depends on main resources which are materials and equipment, to be manufactured to meet desired specifications. Scientific approaches for manufacturing products, need processes & systems as well as quality. Costing of resources plays an important role compared to timelines. 

General Sequence :  Cost, Processes & Systems, Quality and Time

Services based organizations are catering to the construction industry only and their priorities for processes & systems, quality, time and cost varies as per their business strategies and strengths.

Service rating is important for business

Contractors focus on cost, whereas consultant’s strengths are processes & systems. 

Contractors / Subcontractors: Cost is the most important factor whereas Time is dependent on client’s requirements, Processes and Systems & Quality varies as per organization”s setup. Local contractors/ subcontractors focus on profitability, hence time is important whereas National level and international level contractors/ subcontractors concentrate on processes & systems & quality.   

Local Level : Cost, Time, Quality and Processes & Systems

National Level : Cost, Quality, Processes & Systems and Time

International Level :  Cost, Processes & Systems, Quality and Time 

Project Management Consultants: Ownership organization’s hire project management consultants due to their strengths in Processes & Systems which is based on knowledge, experience and use of latest technologies to cater to varied project requirements. National and International level organizations also concentrate on Quality to enhance the organization’s image. However time and cost various as per contractual conditions.

General Sequence :  Processes & Systems, Quality, Time and Cost 

Construction Manager:  Represents projects on behalf  of Client for only execution, hence utmost importance to Processes & Systems followed by Cost (Importance of Value Engineering),  Quality and lastly Time because Client’s decisions are based on market response. 

General Sequence :  Processes & Systems, Cost, Quality and Time

Development Manager: Represents Clients in totality except funding the project. Processes and systems play an important role followed by time due to financial commitments.  while quality and cost are as per project requirements. 

General Sequence :  Processes & Systems, Time, Quality and Cost

Cost Management Consultants: Client’s main requirement is to control expenses as per defined budget and also to carry out value engineering at various stages of construction. Cost management consultant saves cost with the help of processes and systems by considering accuracy of facts, data analysis and various probabilities. The team takes help of  data, experience, technology to bring transparency in preparing tenders, contractual conditions, budget, cost report for monitoring expenses. 

General Sequence :  Processes & Systems, Cost, Time and Quality

Property Management Consultants:  Practically represents clients for completed properties to carry out facility management, few new works and financials. Focus on Processes and Systems followed by Time, whereas Quality and Cost depends on contractual conditions. 

General Sequence :  Processes & Systems, Time, Quality and Cost

Architects: Creative people believe in quality of product followed by processes and systems for 4 stages of designs (Concept, Schematic, design development and good for construction). Importance of Cost and Time varies from client to client and market requirements. 

General Sequence : Quality, Processes & Systems, Cost and Time

Structural Consultants: Science and technology helps in giving stability to Architect’s creativity and hence for structural consultants, quality of execution is almost important due to the lifespan of structure. Quality construction with defined processes and systems will increase not only the structure’s life but also helps in reducing recurring cost of maintenance. Time and cost are as per client’s requirements. 

General Sequence : Quality, Processes & Systems, Cost and Time

Liaisoning Architects: Time is crucial for any project as all other activities are dependent on timely approval from the relevant authorities. Liaisoning architect’s main focus is on coordination and submission of the required documents to authorities for timely approvals. Quality submissions are next on priority and they believe in processes and systems and that leads to cost being the last.

General Sequence : Time, Quality, Processes & Systems and Cost

Surveyors: Accuracy with the help of technology is prime important for establishing the coordinates which will be referred by everyone (authorities, designers, execution team) over the project lifecycle. Quality is very important followed by processes and systems. Timelines and cost are as per project’s requirements. 

General Sequence : Quality, Processes & Systems, Cost and Time

In the case of Specialized fields, Quality plays an important role for Precast yard and RMC plants, whereas for Entrepreneur, cost is most important.

Precast yard & RMC plants: Manufacturing of quality product is crucial because minor deviations will create problems in execution and remedial measures will be quite expensive and hence 100% accuracy is the main requirements in precast yard and RMC plants. Processes and systems need to be followed across the complete life cycle of the product till execution. Time and cost as per project’s requirements. 

General Sequence : Quality, Processes & Systems, Cost and Time

Entrepreneurs: For any business first requirement is of finance followed by processes and systems to achieve desired results. Quality and timelines depend on the product’s requirements. 

General Sequence : Cost, Processes & Systems, Quality and Time

Conclusion :

Processes & Systems are an integral part of the triangle of Time, Cost & Quality.

General sequence for Time, Cost, Quality and Processes & systems varies as per organization’s strategies, principles, nature of business, outcome of product, brand value, magnitude of organization, presence of organizations at different locations over period of time.

After being successful over decades & having hard earned experience and created brand value, then It is important for organizations to be more transparent for which stitching processes & systems with technology is essential.

2.1 Flow chart for Project Life Cycle

31 Activities – From land till financial closure

2.2 Detailed Project Life Cycle

Lead role, Teams, Decisions and Decision makers

2.4 Significance of written communications in Execution Management: Project Development Strategy

Understanding 16 parameters

2.5 Project Budget: PMC & Template

Preparation, Monitoring & Controlling the budget.

180+ items in 2 segments & 8 sections