Building Design Consultants: Which to Choose?

Building Design Consultants: Which to Choose?

A Design and Build Consultant and manager is an important part of any architectural process for a new structure or building. They are tasked with producing drawings from which a building is constructed. These roles can be called Design Consultants, Design and Build Co-ordinators, or Design Managers. It is a challenging role, but one of those where the payoffs are huge when a building has been completed in the same way as the drawings imagined. What does a building design consultant do within the project of a building being designed and constructed?

There are a few different tasks that a building design consultant is in charge of. They are the person in charge of the design team, and from there they will manage the entire design process. This design process includes the use of commercial expertise, technical expertise, and awareness of contractual demands and the need for expert time management.

These are the over-arching concerns of course, to manage the entire project from above, but below that there is a need for the building design consultant to understand the minutiae that build into the long-term targets. The idea is that the building consultant at the top of the hierarchy is that they will provide on-going support and understanding to advise the client on the full requirements of the build and to engage with the building design in a way that encourages effective development.

The design consultants should be provided with a clear framework by the building design consultant and clear targets to meet, whilst being allowed to work in a free and inventive way that highlights their own personal and specific skillsets. With this type of practice, a building design consultant can manage a project in a way that maximises the potential of the build whilst doing so in the most cost-effective way. The quality of information that is provided to the designers and architects should be of the highest standard and delivered at the correct times to ensure the project works at a timely pace and within budget.

Aside from that it is also the responsibility of the consultant to manage the expectations of the project to work within strict legislation, health and safety standards, and the codes of practice that are applicable to that specific site and build. There should also be a complete and exhaustive quest to minimise and eliminate the hazards present on site.

A good building design consultant must be good at keeping tabs on all aspects of a project and understanding exactly how each task and aspect of a project interacts and informs the rest of the project. They must be good at forward planning, but also great at reacting to unforeseen problems and ensuring there are minimal delays in the worst-case scenarios. A good building design consultant must be good at people management, understanding how to manage people to get the best out of them and keep every person moving forward in the same direction.

David Mash