Blog: Whole Life Value doesn’t seem to get a whole lotta interest

22 January 2016

Last year we had to abandon the award for Whole Life Value in London and the South East. We didn’t get one submission into the category.

It is really surprising that Whole Life Value is really so low on the industry’s agenda!

Is it that we don’t design and build with the whole life of an asset in mind? Or do we just hand over our finished products without sticking around to check how well they perform? I don’t believe that the many excellent projects and organisations operating in the London and South East are not aiming to achieve the best long-term value for their customers.

The 1:5:200 model underpins everything Constructing Excellence does which is why we are so passionate about this award. Research shows that, for every £1m capital spend, a building will cost c. £5m to run including periodic refurbishment over 25 years; and that the value of the business done in it will be c.£200m.

So let’s explore what we are really looking for in this category. Value can be defined as ‘the intrinsic worth of goods, service or product’ and the judges in this category will be evaluating the impact that a project has upon the users, the built environment and the wider community in conjunction with the financial aspects of the scheme.

The whole life cost implications of the project will have been a consideration from the outset, including:

  • Procurement costs (including land acquisition, design, construction, equipment etc).
  • Maintenance and refurbishment costs.
  • Operational costs (including running costs and one-off costs associated with the project such as change management).
  • Disposal costs.

Importantly the operational needs of the owners and users will have been a key driver throughout the design and construction process with excellence in occupation the ultimate goal.

If you can describe the balance of expenditure between design, construction and operation in relation to whole life cost/value of your projects then you really should consider submitting an entry for the Whole Life Value award in the 2016 Constructing Excellence in London and South East Awards.

Let’s show the industry that Whole Life Value really matters.

Author: Tina McGeachan, Head of Market Development, SECBE and Constructing Excellence L & SE

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