05 September 2008 | Jake Kanter
Purchasers in the public sector must be closely engaged in the design of new government buildings to ensure they are cost effective and sustainable.
According to a new guide, published by the OGC and consultancy firm DEGW, careful preparation at the start of a new office design will help the building "add value" once it is completed, by reducing the amount of money later spent on maintenance. It said purchasers must be committed and authoritative, setting out a clear vision and adopting good payment policies, to get projects moving quickly.
The report called Working beyond walls aims to help the government use and design office space more efficiently. It urged buyers not to choose cost over value and to partner with suppliers that communicate well. This will help ensure the quality of the building is sustained.
The guide also advised purchasers not to award contracts to suppliers with an interest in any of the products specified in the design. For example, if furniture vendors are asked to produce a plan for office space, they may fill the area with furniture.