Facilities Management Project Delivery: Comprehensive Program Update

The FM project delivery process is important because it serves as a road map for successful costing, scheduling, customer service and involvement, and quality assurance on all projects undertaken by Facilities Management. The project delivery program provides a transparent and systematic approach to project management by incorporating key principles and best practices. The following summary includes both program improvements to date and program and service priority goals for 2013 -2014.

Program Improvements Accomplished To Date:

  1. Transitioned Minor and Planned Project (MPP) renovation team from Facilities Planning and Construction (FPC) to Facilities Management in order to improve customer and project services as well as align these resources into the Facilities Management (FM) operational team to ensure ongoing stewardship. This transition allowed for improved capital and renewal planning in addition to enhanced collaboration with other Administration and Finance (A&F) departments and university partners. (Spring 2010)

    Project Delivery Program Benefits
    The benefit to customers of this reorganization is the consolidation of all project delivery services, which once fully implemented has resulted in the following:
    1. Development of a best-practice project management service organization
    2. Improved communications and the development of long term project support strategies
    3. Fee consistency and predictability
    4. Improved project performance once all systems are in place
    5. One point of contact for projects (centralized intake)
    6. Improved understanding of not only the project design, but the need to address deferred maintenance, energy efficiency, sustainability efforts, ongoing building operations and maintenance (facility renewal)
    7. Process efficiencies and clarification of standards will also result in:
      1. Decreased errors and omissions
      2. Reduced change orders and improved program
      3. Expedited and accurate programming
      4. Decreased claims and project overruns
      5. Improved project controls, including financial and contracting controls, will be in place and audited
      6. Improved cost estimating and benchmarking
      7. Improved project close out, including administrative and contract closeout
  2. Re-established the Job Order Contracting (JOC) Process and Continuing Service Agreements (CSA) utilized to assist in expediting project planning and delivery. (September 2010) http://www.uh.edu/plantops/forms/project-delivery/CSA-JOC-Presentation.pdf
  3. Updated the Guidelines for Planning and Project Delivery to educate university constituents on how and when to engage as participants involved in university projects. (January 2011, Updated in 2012) http://issuu.com/plantops/docs/planning_project_delivery_guidelines?mode=embed&layout=http%3A%2F%2Fskin.issuu.com%2Fv%2Flight%2Flayout.xml&showFlipBtn=true
  4. Expanded team and hired new project management staff members for MPP to ensure project workload remains on average below 20 projects per project manager (based on $ size) and addressed historical performance issues with existing staff. Targeted new hires for Infrastructure, Research and Auxiliary support needs. Also established weekly, monthly and quarterly workload leveling process with full team to ensure ongoing communication, leveling and team enhancement. (Ongoing)
  5. CRDM – Developed a new program that allows for the HEAF Renewal funding to strategically and efficiently administer the Capital Renewal and Deferred Maintenance funds received from the Higher Education Assistance Fund. A university-wide committee of thirteen staff members, representative of facilities, academics, and IT, meet regularly to allocate the funds to be used for maintenance and repairs to public areas of buildings and grounds. Starting in November 2010, CRDM funding will be limited through FY14, hence all project requests for funding are reviewed carefully to support sound stewardship initiatives. (Spring 2010)
  6. Core Team – Developed use of a Core Team to coordinate between facilities management, facilities planning and construction and environmental health and safety. Core team members met bi-weekly to update on key projects. Core team would meet needs and support each other through specific initiatives and co-management of FM, FPC, EHS, and IT projects. (2010)
  7. Established the Facilities Service Center (FSC) to serve as the central point of contact and processing for facility and project/renovation work orders at the university. The FSC serves as liaison between campus customers, service providers, emergency responders and building coordinators. (Summer 2011)
  8. Established a clear point of accountability on all projects – System Administrative Memoranda (SAM) policies related to how projects can be initiated and completed on campus. (July 2011)
    1. a. SAM 01.B.07: http://www.uh.edu/af/universityservices/policies/sam/1GenAdmin/1B7.pdf
    2. b. SAM 03.C.03: http://www.uh.edu/af/universityservices/policies/sam/3FicsalAffairs/3C3.pdf
  9. Established a seven (7) step project delivery process utilizing industry best practices – full staff training was completed by MPP staff, constituents, and stakeholders. (July 2011) http://www.uh.edu/plantops/projdel/pd-references/FM%20PD%20Manual%202012.pdf
  10. Centralized university-wide physical capital planning and maintenance organization. (September 2011) http://www.uh.edu/plantops/about-us/our-strategy/index.php
  11. Created and implemented a minor in house construction team (MIC) to ensure targeted resources were dedicated to smaller in-house construction which improved customer service, scheduling and reduced cost. (September 2011)
  12. Moved from a capital projects fee structure and transitioned to a self-sustaining project operation. (September 2011)
  13. Established and communicated clear metrics to measure project performance. Performance management tools, including design, contractor and customer evaluations were solicited and integrated into the project performance structure. (April 2012)
  14. Developed proactive partnerships to ensure collaboration through proper planning and integration with partner groups, including Fire Marshal, Parking and Transportation and Environmental Health and Safety. (2011-2012)
  15. Outage guidelines, disposal suspension guidelines - Developed the University Outage Protocol project and operational checklists to enhance service and ensure effective user and business continuity planning related to both planned and unplanned outages. Also currently track planned and unplanned outages for both FPC & FM as a Key Strategic Indicator (2011/2012/2013))
  16. Completed facility and infrastructure condition audits (FCA) to assist in capital renewal and project planning, as well as ensuring targeted investment in support of the university’s safety, residential and research missions (December 2012)
  17. Drafted the renewal policy for the university to ensure proper planning for new facilities as well as improvement in pro forma process. Established a funding model utilizing the Association of Physical Plant Administrators (APPA) level 3 (managed care) model for new space to assist in the reduction of future deferred maintenance and improved facility conditions. (Fall 2012)
  18. Developed the process for auxiliary capital five year plans and ongoing quarterly updates. Completed the process for Student Housing and Residential Life and Campus Recreation and Wellness. (2012)
  19. Modified the minor projects organizational structure to enable separation of workload management and staff development from administrative program management. This effort will allow focused attention to quality, scope development, programming, cost and schedule management as well as individual staff and team development. These changes will also provide for adequate time spent on program development and customer education. (February 2013)
  20. Weekend coverage (Saturday) – Facilities Management has always provided a roster of who was considered to be on call for specific time periods, especially for after-hours and weekends. Beginning March 2013, this process was formalized with the addition and identification of one specific individual that will not only be on-call but will be physically located on-campus during the hours of 6am to 2pm each Saturday. This individual will not only be available to respond to emergency situations but will also have the responsibility to visit active weekend operational projects as well as MPP – MIC project locations. (Spring 2013)

Program Next Steps – 2013 / 2014 Program and Service Priorities:

  1. Work with Purchasing Department and Office of General Counsel (OGC) to formally implement a mandatory surety letter requirement for all renovation bids to reduce risk to the university and ensure bonding ability has been validated at the time of contractor selection. (Spring 2013)
  2. Support business services team, OGC, purchasing, and contracts management team in creating and implementing further use of cooperative programming with supporting rules, guidelines, and process documentation. (Summer/Fall 2013)
  3. Support business services team, OGC, purchasing, and contracts management team in the development of standardized request for formal competitive sealed proposal (RFP) and request for qualifications (RFQ) templates to improve the contracting process, project timelines, and solicitation effectiveness for all Plant Operations projects and services. (Summer 2013)
  4. Expand the MIC team by adding six (6) additional staff members to support in-house projects that are small but currently utilizing outside contractors. This targeted investment will help to better utilize the limited renewal dollars available to the university and will allow for additional targeted program and facility reinvestment. This increase in staff size should include a lead/estimator position that will ensure the current management structure is properly staffed and that business continuity is maintained in the absence of the manager. The targeted hire of a lead/estimator position will include construction administration skills for establishing a quality assurance program for MPP/MIC projects. (Summer 2013)
  5. Monitor and report on the MPP/MIC contracting process timing in an effort to improve the current contracting procurement and contracting timelines in support of improved customer service. (2013/2014)
  6. Develop and implement two-year program and project plans for standard renewal projects which will include parking and transportation, classroom renovations and auxiliary (university services) dining and retail needs. Assign program managers for each of these efforts and implement prior to FY 14. (Fall 2013)
  7. Standardize consulting fees paid by project type to ensure fees are reasonable for the services rendered. Track improvements against past practices by project type – report on improvements. (Spring 2013)
  8. Expand the current facilities condition program to begin auditing of new space 9 months post-substantial completion to pre-identify, with a third party, any construction warranty issues as well as establish a baseline capital plan for future years. Maintain and update all FCA data on new and existing audits/space. (Summer/Fall 2013 & Ongoing)
  9. Work with MPP/MIC and the FSC to ensure effectiveness of the intake process and that workload assignments are made and measured; process and workload is to be documented and managed weekly. (Ongoing with Quarterly Reports)
  10. Work with MPP/MIC to ensure that business plans are updated continuously and ensure the viability of financial processes and staffing both quarterly and annually. Recommend program improvements as applicable. Communications will be a critical plan component. (Ongoing and Quarterly Reports)
  11. Continue to embrace and advance a leadership role in sustainability initiatives and to ensure compliance with university standards and guidelines to incorporate energy conservation and sustainability principles and practices. MIC and MPP contractors will capture and recycle materials when possible during all renovation/new projects -- tonnage of material recycled will be reported on a quarterly basis to the sustainability manager and as part of FM sustainability performance indicators. (Ongoing & 2013)
  12. Work with consultants to create and develop a temporary data management tool for FCA and MPP needs related to reporting and tracking of renewal and project information. (Spring/Summer 2013)
  13. Support Physical Response Emergency Planning (PREP) pre- and post-event emergency activities related to zone and project response. (Ongoing 2013)
  14. Track and publish all other identified annual improvements as well as lessons learned at year end with customer and vendor performance rankings.

For questions related to the Facilities Management Project Delivery Program or for additional information, please contact Sameer Kapileshwari, FM Interim Executive Director, 713-743-5797, Melissa Rockwell-Hopkins, FM Executive Director, 713-743-8750, or Shannon Jones, Director of Minor & Planned Projects, 713-743-4469. About the University of Houston


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