10. “Quality Assurance Observation (QAO) is too expensive and will not fit into our budget”
The percentage of project cost spent on QAO is a fraction of what one would spend if you had a Construction Defect Claim. Not only is it a small cost to ensure that your structure is being built correctly, but it is also important to think about the opportunity cost. Money you would have to spend on a construction defect lawsuit or, money you would spend on a poorly completed project which needs to be renovated again in one year or even ten years. The small percentage that goes to QAO will inevitably save you money on the project in the long run.
9. “QAO checklists and meetings will slow down the project”
We have found that the opposite is true. Initially there is a learning curve to bring all the involved parties up to speed on the QAO process. However, after everyone involved understands the process, the schedule usually goes faster than expected and the overall quality of work is improved. When it is time for the punch and close-out we have seen that with QAO, closeout was the best and smoothest our clients have ever seen. Because items are dealt with throughout the project, the normal large punch list is reduced and speeds up the project closeout.
8. “We have design professionals and good contractors involved – why add another?”
While QAO is another party to involve in a project, it could be the most important. If there is not a QAO practitioner on site, who is overseeing the contractors? The contractors themselves are typically left to supervise, but that is not much different from banks being able to do their own audits and having no third party verification. We all know how well that worked. And from the skyrocketing trends of Construction Defect Claims, we are witnessing what happens when no one is providing QAO.
7. “We have a great General Contractor”
Ingvar Kamprad, the founder of IKEA said “Only those who are asleep make no mistakes.” While we have worked with many incredible General Contractors, we all make mistakes, and having an extra set of eyes on a project verifying correct assemblies is not a hindrance to a good GC. In fact most quality GC’s welcome the third party verification as a proactive measure to ensuring quality.
6. “We have solid insurance and tight contracts”
Insurance and contracts are very important but they are not a substitute for a QAO program. Would you like to use that insurance to cover an $800,000.00 construction defect? Have the claim get denied, go to court, get a settlement, and then go through the entire construction project a second time. Many of our clients have done this and you can too, but we would recommend constructing the project right the first time and verifying that through Quality Assurance Observation.
5. “Our structure is going to be LEED certified”
At OAC we believe that we should be good stewards of the environment, but a simply green structure is not truly sustainable. We are all for green building, but believe that we must go “Beyond Green” to create sustainable structures – what we have coined Sustainable QualityTM. This is where QAO comes in. Get a LEED Certified building, but get that building QAO CertifiedTM as well. It does not matter how green a building and its materials are if it must be rebuilt in 8 years because of poor quality construction leading to water intrusion and mold, settlement and failing assemblies and worse yet, dissatisfied clients. That is not green or sustainable. Implementing a QAO Program creates a structure with Sustainable QualityTM and is Beyond Green.
4. “The general contractor already has a Quality Control Program”
Quality Control is reactive, QAO is proactive. QC happens at the end of a project, QAO happens throughout the installation of specific assemblies.
3. “Isn’t that what the city inspector is for?”
No. This is one of the first questions we are asked about when owners learn about the poor quality construction in their homes or buildings. Or “How did this pass inspection?” It passed inspection because the inspector checks for code compliance, life safety, functionality, and structural integrity. So things like waterproofing, assembly installation, sound mitigation or correct flashing around windows is not part of the city inspection.
2. “We have been on numerous projects without a QAO program”
We also have been involved in projects without QAO, but have found that the benefits of verifying proper installation and construction, far outweigh the risks of dealing with issues down the road.
1. “I have been doing it this way for 30 years”
Yes we understand that, but that doesn’t necessarily make it right. Construction Defect claims have been exponentially rising for the past 30 plus years, and the quality of most construction that we observe is not high. There are a few exceptions to the rule, but an overarching theme that we see and hear is excitement about our QAO CertifiedTM program. Many owners, investors, and industry professionals believe this type of program is what the industry needs.
Change is not easy, especially not in the building industry. Quality Assurance Observation is a simple process, but it is not easy. It is necessary if we want to create structures that are truly sustainable, structures that will stand the test of time.
For more in depth information on the Quality Assurance Observation program, certification, and training contact OAC Management at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a presentation today!