How to submit and accept a Programme
Here within the Contract Management Platform we have gone over and above the contractual requirement but is, without doubt, good practice project management. Without any kind of narrative, it may be difficult for the Project Manager to understand what the Programme is showing and why it has changed. By the Contractor completing this straightforward narrative it should help speed up the process for responding – with either acceptance or non-acceptance and the specific reasons why. Both Parties should want to get to an Accepted Programme each and every period. Within NEC contracts an Accepted Programme supersedes previous Programmes and becomes the baseline upon which future progress and compensation events will be measured against.
Submitting a Programme
This shows the status of all the Programmes issued for acceptance. It also allows the Contractor to submit a new Programme filling in the following data:
- Programme reference –g. Rev 01, Period 01
- Date of planned Completion– compared to the previous period which is already shown. If no change shows the same date.
- Reason for any change to planned Completion– give clear detail why it has changed as to what event(s) this is down to, or if no change just states that.
- Change to other contractual milestones– again if there is, state clear reasons why, if no change, then just state no change.
- Main progress in period – just headline activities completed since the last Programme issued
- Key activities– main activities planned for the next four weeks
- Critical Path– summarise the critical path for the remaining works (which may or may not be different to last month)
- Main Programme changes– a chance for Contractor to summarise and explain the main changes made in the period. This will allow the Project Manager to understand what has changed and why and hopefully speed up the response for acceptance/rejection
- Compensation events– identify what CE’s have been added to the Programme and a summary of their impact if not already identified above
Once this data is completed it allows the Contractor to add the Programme as an attachment and any other attachments such as native electronic format, critical path filter, 4-week look ahead etc. before formally submitting.
Accepting a Programme
The Project Manager by clicking on the “Reply” tab from an individual Programme can then respond to the submitted Programme with acceptance (along with any comments) or clear reasons for rejection (in enough detail that will allow the contractor to correct the submission)
How to draft a General Notification
It is important that it is clear what is being notified and for what reason. There are several obligations throughout the contract and they are all listed for you within this form. There is a “catch-all” element at the bottom for “other general notifications” for anything else that you wish to notify that is not one of the other reasons listed. This is to catch anything else and to avoid the need for a “general communication form” which other systems seem to have and we pride ourselves in not having or needing such a form.
There are three notifications the Supervisor can give under the contract – date of tests and inspections to be carried out, tests and inspections that have been carried out and works can be brought into working areas and notification of the Defects Certificate. These need to be communicated in writing to the Contractor.
Creating a Notification
Each notification requires a subject, and then to choose the contractual reason for the notification from the drop-down list. The reason for the notification has to be within that list. However, there is a catch-all “other general notification” at the bottom of the list for either party wanting to notify something that is not on the list e.g. Project Manager wants to share a safety bulletin for information with the Contractor. They then go on to write the details as to what is being notified.
How to issue items for Acceptance and Accept them
The contract requires several items to be issued for acceptance. These will need to be responded to within the contractual timescales where it states one, or for all other matters within the projects period of reply (as stated in contract data 1). These are for all the items the contract states can be issued for acceptance, with exception of the Programme that is covered separately in its own section. It is for matters such as design, subcontractors, change in key people etc. The Project Manager then needs to clearly respond with either acceptance or if non-acceptance, the clear reasons why that will allow the Contractor to correct the submission.
Creating a Contractors Issue for Acceptance
The Issue for Acceptance template has an “issue type” drop-down menu where all of the items listed in the contract that can be issued for acceptance (except Programme which is covered in its own section) are listed to be chosen from. Then further detail can be added describing the item being issued. Once the draft is created there is the option (not mandatory) to add an attachment before sending. Make sure you do this before communicating as there is no way to add it afterwards and a whole new communication will have to be produced with the attachment.
Accepting a Contractors Issue for Acceptance
The Project Manager can click on a Contractors Issue from the register and then click on the “reply” tab to be able to respond with either acceptance or non-acceptance (and to respond within the contractual timescales). If not accepting the Project Manager should clearly state the reasons why they are not accepting so that the Contractor can re-submit accordingly.
How to issue a Payment Application
Payment applications will be submitted at the interval stated within contract data part 1. The application should make it clear what is being applied for and why.
Creating a Payment Application
A full application will always be in quite a lot of detail, so the intent within the Contract Management Platform is to complete a high-level summary for the system, but the full application in detail will be added as an attachment. Therefore, with this form it is mandatory to include an attachment before submitting. The Contractor can submit a new one by using the “Create New” button. There is then the requirement to complete:
- Assessment Date– date up until which the assessment is accounting for
- Summary– brief summary in words as to what the more detailed attached application is showing
- Cumulative Price for Work Done to Date– it then requires Contractor to state Price for Work Done to Date
- Less amount due in the last Paymentcertificate , once this is added it will then calculate the amount being claimed for in the given period.
Once created it is mandatory to attach a full application which is only summarised in this communication. The draft can be reviewed and amended as necessary – make sure you press “save changes” to save the changes. Any attachment should be added by using the “attachment tab” and then the form can be issued by pressing “Communicate Payment Certificate”.
The Project Manager does not accept/reject the application itself – they create a Payment Certificate to confirm what payment they will certify.
How to issue a Payment Certificate
The Project Manager needs to clearly communicate how they have assessed the Contractor’s payment application and what they are certifying. The assessment will include plus/minus other amounts as relevant, such as retention, delay damages, bonuses, KPI’s.
Creating a Payment Certificate
They confirm the assessment date, before producing a summary of their application – on the basis that they will be attaching the full assessment. There is a requirement for the following details:
- Cumulative Price for Work Done to Date– overall Prices to date that would be due.
- Plus other amounts– any other amounts they are entitled to be paid e.g. KPI’s, bonus for early Completion. This should be calculated as a lump sum price to be added.
- Less amounts to be paid– amounts that should be contractually withheld e.g. retention, delay damages (if they are already exceeding Completion Date). This should be calculated as a lump sum number to be withheld.
- Less amount paid in last payment certificate –the form is working out cumulative cost but then you need to deduct here what the last payment certificate was to see what this month’s amount should be.
- Tax law requires Employer to pay– adjustment for tax if relevant.
- Certified for payment– automatically calculated from all of the above.
The Project Manager can then create the payment certificate as a draft. This can be checked (and amended if necessary – but press “save” if the form is amended. Attachments can then be added before the payment certificate is communicated and appears on the Project Manager’s Payment Certificate Register.
The Project Manager can create a Payment Certificate by clicking on “Payment Certificate” from the green “Create New” dropdown button at the top of the page or by selecting the “Create New” button on the Payment Certificate module.
How to notify a supervisor’s defect
Notifying a defect
The supervisor can create a defect by clicking on “Supervisor Defect Notifications ” from the green “Create New” dropdown button at the top of the page or by selecting the “Create New” button on the Supervisor Defect Notifications module.
Here the supervisor can raise a new communication by using “Create New” to bring up a new form. It simply requires the details of the defect being notified before creating the draft form. This allows the Supervisor to check the details produced and add a relevant attachment (e.g. a photo which would be a good idea here to clearly show the defect) before pressing “Communicate Defect Notification” to issue into the system.
Once created there is an “actions” tab where the Supervisor can update the latest action to be taken and by who, before eventually when they agree it is closed out the Supervisor can confirm the final action and confirm the date it has been closed which then updates the register.
How to accept Tests & Inspections
The Contractor can create new tests and inspections on the Contract Management Platform. They can select the green “Create New” button at the top of the screen or from Inspections & Defects then Contractor Tests & Inspections and use the “Create New” button on the module. The details required to be completed are: Details of test/inspection to be carried out, Location of test, Date and time of test and Description of test.
Accepting a Contractor’s Test/Inspection
The Supervisor can use the “Sign off record” to record their findings. They state whether the test/inspection was Accepted or Not Accepted before adding relevant comments as to their response. They then submit the form which then instantly updates the register in terms of comments and status.
How to Instruct a search
The Contractor is obliged to uncover works if they are instructed to do so. If a defect is not found, the cost of uncovering the works will be notifiable as a compensation event by the Contractor providing they gave the Supervisor the chance to inspect (as required in the Works Information or in line with any agreed Inspection & Test Plans) before the works were covered up.
Creating an Instruction to search
The Supervisor can create a new instruction to search and confirm the details of what they require to be uncovered and why. Once this has been communicated and the works are uncovered, the Supervisor can then create a “sign off record sheet” recording what was found. The Supervisor would confirm if a defect was found or not, and then fill in details of what the search showed and then if relevant, any actions required to be carried out.
How to Delegate Actions
It is essential on any project under NEC that the right person is giving an instruction or a notification that they are empowered contractually to do. It is a common issue on projects, that instructions are given and followed by someone who is not authorised to do so and it results in numerous problems and affects relationships. Within contract data, there will be a named Project Manager, Supervisor and Contractor. These are the people who are authorised to issue communications in accordance with the contract. If they wish to delegate this power to anyone else within their team then it needs to be communicated in writing. Within the Contract Management Platform we have seen this necessary to make as a standalone form so that it is clear at any point in time who is and who is not authorised to issue communications within the contract.
Delegation of actions - shows a table of the delegated powers to date issued on the project. If the Project Manager /Supervisor/Contractor wishes to create a new delegation, they use “Create New” to bring up the form and to fill in the following details:
- Powers to be delegated
- Who they will be delegated to
- Dates delegation will be in place for
This will then create a draft that can be checked and if necessary amended. There is also the chance to add an attachment if it is relevant before communicating the notification.
How to Create RFIs and TQs and Respond to them
Whilst not a contractual requirement, it is very useful to run a parallel RFI (request for information) or TQ (technical query) system alongside the contractual processes. These can be kept separate from the early warning process. RFI/TQ’s would be more run of the mill information that is needed. This could be the colour of something or the specification of something that is some time in the future. If they are looking as though the lack of response could cause a problem, then this matter could then be raised in parallel as an early warning to make the other party clear that the lack of this information could be a problem. Most RFI/TQ’s will hopefully get answered or responded without the need for then having to notify an early warning. The response time for answering an RFI/TQ is not a contractually binding timescale, and certainly not an instant compensation event if it is not responded to by the date the Contractor stated the answer was needed by.
Creating an Instruction to search
The Contractor can create an RFI/TQ by clicking on “RFI/TQ” from the green “Create New” dropdown button at the top of the page or by selecting the “Create New” button on the RFI/TQ module. They would state the details of the RFI/TQ being asked, and when a response is ideally needed by. This then creates a draft which can be checked and amended as necessary (press “save” if you make any changes to the draft before sending) and if relevant an attachment can be added before using the “Communicate RFI/TQ” to submit.
Replying to an RFI/TQ
The Project Manager can use the “reply” tab for each RFI/TQ to issue their response. They fill in their response and submit which then updates the register with their response.