We know that cost control is critical because margins are small and the viability of a project can be very sensitive to small changes in cost elements. We also know that cost control must be integral from the start of a project to achieve the best results. At project brief stage we compare the business case or development appraisal with benchmark budgets to confirm that project type, size and specification aligns with the project budget. During design development we set target budgets for components or elements to guide the designers towards an affordable design and carry out value engineering reviews where targets are not being met. We seek value through the procurement process and control costs through construction from contract sum to final account.
In our experience, detailed cost reporting is an essential part of project controls, but the value of the information rapidly diminishes on a live project. Our Cost Managers drive the development process because we know that it’s too late to make a difference with a reactive approach.