Posts Tagged ‘Value Engineering’

Part 3: Value Engineering in Aquatic Systems

Drew Tubb, Sr. Aquatic Systems Engineer
dtubb@integrated-aqua.com

Workshop – As presented at the AALSO 2014 Symposium

Drew Tubb leading the Value Engineering Workshop at the AALSO 2014 Symposium

Drew Tubb leading the Value Engineering Workshop at the AALSO 2014 Symposium

In the construction industry, the value engineering (VE) phase of project development typically occurs as projects move from their initial design to the construction documentation phase.  Within the world of aquatic systems, we have found that many interpret value engineering exclusively as an exercise in which aspects of a project are cut to lower the bottom line cost.  In reality, the true purpose of value engineering is to fundamentally improve the overall value of the project.  Below will discuss areas to consider which increase system function without increasing dollars spent, or decrease dollars spent without sacrificing overall system functionality.

IAS presented a workshop at the AALSO 2014 Symposium in Las Vegas, providing an abstract of Value Engineering to workshop participants.  Below is a flipbook of the slideshow presentation given.  Of course, additional commentary was given on each slide, so you cannot get the full effect of the workshop just from viewing the slideshow alone; however, it will give you a broad spectrum view of Value Engineering. (if you click the little screen icon on the left side of the navigation bar under the flipbook, it will open to full screen, then simply double click the page to make the viewable area larger, double click again to show navigation bar so you can flip pages, etc…)

 

 

Drew Tubb brings 18 years of experience in the operation, construction and design of aquatic systems and continues this series of articles discussing Value and Aquatic Life Support Systems Technology. Drew can be reached at dtubb@integrated-aqua.com.

Part 1: Value Engineering to Maximize Your Aquatic Systems Investment

Drew Tubb, Sr. Aquatic Systems Engineer
dtubb@integrated-aqua.com
DrewNewsletterIn the construction world, the value engineering (VE) phase often occurs as projects move from their initial design to the construction documentation phase. I have found that many in the aquatic systems world interpret value engineering exclusively as an exercise in which aspects of a project are cut to bring down the bottom line cost. In reality, the true purpose of value engineering is to fundamentally improve the value of the project. When evaluating a project during the VE phase, designers are looking for modifications which increase system function without increasing dollars spent, or decrease dollars spent without sacrificing function.

Finding better value for dollars spent involves critical thinking about the initial design. Are there pumps on the market other than those specified that fit the application targets but operate more efficiently? If so, a reduced electric bill provides added value to the project. Similarly, if commercially available alternative equipment is proven more robust or offers a longer warranty, the gained security adds value. In some instances, downsizing and duplicating equipment provides the security of redundancy and can be more cost-effective.

Cost of ownership and maintenance should be considered in the VE phase while looking for better value for dollars spent. How much do replacement parts cost? Is there equipment available that does the same job but will be substantially less expensive to rebuild? Could equipment location within the mechanical space be laid out differently to improve maintenance access, thereby lowering long-term maintenance labor costs?

In some instances, the project simply comes in over budget and the bottom line needs to decrease. The goal in this instance should be to decrease dollars spent without sacrificing function. The need for all included components should be evaluated, but simply cutting out equipment to save money shouldn’t be the goal. Have alternate equipment manufacturers been considered? Could the designed flow rate be reduced without sacrificing filtration efficiency? Re-evaluation of equipment sizing criteria can be a powerful way to decrease dollars spent without substantially altering functionality. Have alternate technologies been considered, such as UV sterilization instead of ozone? Has consideration been given to using pre-fabricated filtration modules rather than field-installing all equipment?

Value Engineering is a vital phase of successful project design, and should not be overlooked no matter the health of the project budget. A good designer will successfully navigate this phase to provide maximum value for your project. It is very important to partner with a designer skilled and experienced in balancing you project’s exact needs and expectations with the budget available to maximize value. As a client, your biggest part in the process is to communicate your specific needs to your designer and work with them to evaluate your best options. It is important to remember that this is your project, and you deserve to get the most value possible.

Drew Tubb brings 17 years of experience in the operation, construction and design of aquatic systems and begins this series of articles discussing Value Engineering.  Drew can be reached at dtubb@integrated-aqua.com.