Launched in December 2015 at SIMI, the French trade fair for commercial real estate, the "Co Design&Build" model was quick to win over numerous users and investors in the real estate sector. Why was this?
What are the benefits for customers? How is it different from existing construction models (project management and turnkey)? What added value does it bring? Three factors underlie its success to date:
1. Financial savings
Traditionally, if a builder achieved savings during the course of a contract, they retained those savings. With the "Co Design&Build" model, these savings are shared with the customer.
In a highly competitive market, builders are seeing a reduction in their margins. Often, the only way to improve these margins is to withhold information, set fixed financial objectives for the project manager and decide on technical solutions that serve their own best interests.
During the construction phase, this approach sets the interests of the builder against those of the customer. By boldly opting for transparency and promoting a collaborative approach with the customer, the "Co Design&Build" model has pushed this logic to its natural extreme by sharing all savings with the customer. Thanks to its unique financial model, coupled with reduced overheads, OpenBox is the only player that has been able to commit to the sharing of savings in this way, based on certified accounts.
"Co Design&Build" is a more cost-effective option.
2. End-to-end control of your project
Once they have finished defining their requirements, customers with a commercial building project will be faced with a simple question: how can I be assured that fixed objectives will be met and expected performance levels achieved? This concerns pricing, commissioning dates, convenience, productivity and quality.
To secure this assurance in regard to the final outcome, or to minimise risk, the customer chooses a builder based on their experience and financial stability. If they so choose, they can take advantage of the performance obligations provided within the legal framework of a French real-estate development contract (CPI = Contrat de Promotion Immobilière).
The "Co Design&Build" model is very much in tune with this approach; OpenBox provides performance guarantees through CPI. When you choose the "Co Design&Build" model for your project, you'll also be kept up to date on the precise situation on the ground, right throughout the project – from updates on supplier prices, to technical solutions under consideration, to the current status of the schedule.
If amendments need to be made to the contract, they can be defined, processed and implemented more easily and without conflict. "Co Design&Build" is a pragmatic solution that takes into account the complexity of real-estate projects. Transparency, collaboration and shared savings naturally converge in an alignment of interests.
With the "Co Design&Build" model, the customer is better informed, which means that they have better control over their project. They no longer have to negotiate with builders for whom the contract is their one and only road map. A road that they too often prefer to travel alone, basing all decisions on what best serves their own interests.
3. Synergies and ability to capitalise on know-how
The most efficient teams are those that work in a collaborative way. The "Co Design&Build" model acknowledges the rightful role of the customer's teams, allowing them to play as active a part as they choose in the design and execution of their projects.
"Co Design&Build" thus gives team members the opportunity to gain increased insight and autonomy. This method makes it possible to exchange know-how as well as different perspectives. It allows each team member's expertise to be developed and is an important component in a project's overall success. With customer teams retaining full control, transparency and the alignment of interests foster co-creation and co-construction, which serves to benefit the project. OpenBox retains sole responsibility for the technical solutions implemented, giving the customer the full benefit of the guarantees offered by the real-estate development contract.
The "Co Design&Build" model has established itself as a highly efficient approach to the management of projects. It lays the groundwork for finding effective solutions and resolving costly conflicts that require a great deal of energy, time and effort.