Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Boq - are they still useful and relevant today?

Historically, the formal form of Bills of Quantities (BQ) was introduced in the United Kingdom after the Industrial Revolution in the 19th Century. They were mainly used by master tradesmen for paying their workmen and
claiming payments from building owners by submitting it as partisan Final Account. BQ are widely used in most of the Commonwealth countries such as Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Hong Kong, South Africa, India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Kenya, the Middle Eastern countries etc. particularly in the traditional procurement system. BQ are mainly used for cost estimating and more importantly, as part of tender document for use in soliciting ompetitive tenders from contractors. They are also compiled together with contract form to form a contract document. However, as construction industry evolved and changed technologically, economically, legally and procedurally, so is the use of BQs in construction projects. It has been the subject of scrutiny and criticisms by the construction community. It was highlighted that the use of BQ in the UK construction industry is declining and it is possible that they will vanish from the industry in the near future. In 1991 the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors revealed that between 1984 and 1989 the usage of s in building works in the UK declined in value to almost 10%. Several reasons were given for such a situation. These include the lack of use by the project teams, its limited use after the tendering process and the increased use of more “advanced” non-traditional procurement system by the industry. That was the situation and prediction made twenty years ago. The question now “What is the situation in our construction industry today? Are BQ still relevant today, especially when more and more projects are contracted out using the non-traditional procurement systems? Are they still useful to the clients, architects, engineers and contractors throughout the construction process? This paper looks at the issue of BQ, their weakness and potential in the construction industry.

By ChutMayMan -