Jon M. Huntsman School of Business

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Monday, November 4, 2013

It’s Called “Value Engineering” or ... “Being Just Plain Smart”

By Ken Snyder

We are utilizing a process we officially call “value engineering” to build Huntsman Hall. You might call it, however, “being just plain smart,” and if you did, I think you’d be right.

We get the architects, the contractors, and subcontractors together on a regular basis to examine each step of the process to see if there are ways to save money without sacrificing quality. Last week, for example, we reviewed nine mechanical issues in one meeting and discovered we could save more than $100,000 by making a few changes. (I’m here to tell you when you can save that kind of money by going to one meeting, it gives you a whole different attitude about your calendar than you might have had before.)

We do it by pooling the collective experience and smarts of everyone involved to discover the most efficient way possible to proceed. The architects are always part of the process so they can tell us why they designed things the way they did. The contractors and subcontractors are represented so they can make their case for course deviations that could save us money, if that makes sense given the master plan.

When this building is done, I’ll be proud not only of the fact it rose from the ground on my watch but I’ll also be proud of how it was done. I wanted to share this with you so that you could feel the same way. 

I’ll leave it to you to decide what to call it.

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