Improvement through PAS 91

PAS 91 has recently been updated to align with the Government Construction Strategy.

PAS91-CoverHere are some of my thoughts on recently providing PAS91 support (training events, webinars and live bid support)

As with all bidding the trick is to:

 “delight the client to attain maximum scores and score higher than your competitors”

Easy?

PAS 91 used properly could significantly improve the SME contracting sector, on topics such as Diversity, Quality Management, Environmental Management and of course Building Information Modelling.

The scoring I have seen to date heavily favours certification – to ISO 9001, ISO1400 and PAS1192. Providing these certificates scores full marks, and exempts the bidder from completing a large number of questions in an attempt to describe arrangements that meet the standards, and only score eg 75% of available scores. (in one case up to 12 sides of A4 are expected!)

A contractor without these standards in place are already scoring less than those who have, before they start to articulate their practices.

It makes attaining these accreditations a no brainer, whilst of course providing the benefits of accreditation. From a clients PAS91 perspective it allows further in depth questions in the Specific Questions Module, for eg delivering value, evidence of localism, sustainable material procurement.

The BIM optional module in PAS 91 contains some tough questions, but also provides a useful guide as to what bidders should be preparing for.

Top tips for maximising PAS 91 points:

  • Get a (free) copy of PAS 91
  • Practice, prepare and fine tune  your responses, get them internally and independently checked.
  • Ensure you provide complete responses to all parts of the questions
  • Evidence, Evidence Evidence – use real evidence (think business storytelling) to support.
  • Be consistent between what you say in the bid, demonstrate on your projects and say on your website and or social media (watch those linkedin profiles!)

We will be providing further training, public and one to one webinars, and live PAS 91 consultancy support over the coming months. Do get in touch 

We are also developing 91Cloud a PAS91 portal due to launch soon – watch this space

Also in addition in conjunction with ibepartnership we have developed a low cast but high value package for achieving ISO 14001 for smaller SME contracting organisations. Again, please do get in touch 

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Finally PAS91 update issued.

At last, the updated version of PAS 91 Construction prequalification questionnaires has been issued and is available as a free download on the BSi website.

The updated version is aligned to the Government Construction Strategy and set to be madatory for Government projects from 2016, hence is aligned to BIM level 2 requirements for the same year.

In preparation for the Government BIM mandate, optional questions have been included within PAS 91 examining competence in BIM and collaborative information exchange.

Working with organisations on PQQ’s, and indeed supporting the ‘modern construction management’ activities across the organisation necessary to win work in todays industry, we see many contractors unsure as to where to start with Building Information Modelling.

Yet now is the time to address BIM and get ready, at the least in awareness and understanding of how you will respond to and manage BIM requirements.  Increasingly we see BIM related PQQ questions, not only through PAS91 but down through many PQQ documents.

Update 15/4/13:

The National Federation of Builders is optimistic the latest incarnation of PAS 91 will enjoy a wider take-up than much criticised previous versions. Paul Bogle, policy manager at the trade association, said: “The new version will be mandatory for central government and while that is not the case for local authorities we’re optimistic the new version will gain wider acceptance among local authorities too.” Source

But, already others are planning an alternative to PAS91

“Last month, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors said its proposal to create a simpler pre-qualification questionnaire (PQQ) to boost SME access to contracts could replace PAS 91.. The plan for a new industry standard PQQ, to be drafted with the support of the Construction Industry Council, was one of the key recommendations in RICS’ recently published Construction Policy” Source

PQQ Specification PAS 91 now to include BIM

I have blogged a number of times on PAS 91, the Publicly Available Specification for PQQ’s, (eg here) and on BIM, Building Information Management, (eg here – What is BIM)

But … until now separately …

It is encouraging to note then that Construction Manager published news that the new version of PAS 91 will include BIM, asking bidders on their experience of using Building Information Modelling.

Although PAS91 has maybe not had the take up anticipated, its influence on other PQQ’s is noticeable. Hence the inclusion of BIM into the PAS can only reinforce the importance and the need to act on BIM, from both clients and contractors.

A consultation on the draft version of the updated PAS91 has just concluded. The drafting committee convened by the British Standards Institute, which  authored the original form, will study the comments and issue a final version before Christmas, according to Brian Such, project manager at BSI Standard Solutions.

The draft asks about an organisation’s understanding, capability and willingness in BIM, said Such. “In the last two years interest in building information modelling has grown rapidly – and it felt appropriate and helpful to expand in this direction.”

The government has mandated BIM on all public projects from 2016. (See the Government Construction Strategy)

Proposed new version of PAS 91:

Required

•  Supplier identity, key roles and contact information

•  Financial information

•  Business and professional standing

•  Health and safety policy and capability

Optional

•  Equal opportunity and diversity policy and capability

•  Environmental management policy and capability

•  Quality management policy and capability

•  Building Information Modelling

Notes:
 
I am currently assisting a number of contractors in developing a BIM preparation strategy, based on collaborative working principles and approaches.
 
I recently co-authored a NFB Guide to PAS91:2010 which will be updated following issue of Revision 2
 
If you would like to know more, or receive an outline of a preparation strategy please do get in touch via email or twitter
 
A copy of PAS91:2010 can be downloaded from the BSI site