Owner Construction Representative – Part 1 – Introduction

An OCR is a professional advocate…

…for the owner of a construction project. The OCR’s sole purpose is to represent the owner’s interests throughout the life of the project.

Ideally, the work of the OCR should begin when the owner determines there is a need for a construction project, but has only a beginning idea of what that project might entail.

The “Owner” of a project can be defined in various ways…

    • The sole proprietor of a closely held business that operates out of the owner’s facilities, or:
    • The manager of a non-profit organization that owns its facility, or;
    • The governing body of a religious organization that owns its facilities., or;
    • The pastor (or assigned delegate) of a church, or other religious organization.

Any of the above different “owners” can benefit from hiring a professional OCR from the conception of the need for construction to the final closeout of the project – ready for occupancy.

The first step in the process is discussion between the owner and the OCR to clarify the needs, wants, and desires of the owner. The OCR can help the owner think through options for the operations of the organization throughout the project. The OCR can also help clarify what the organization’s furure needs are, and translate options into how facilities might need to be modified so the needs can be met.

The success of those discussions depends on the OCR having the expertise and experience to help the owner understand the complexities of facility construction. It is through these initial master planning discussions, and probing questions, that the OCR can help identify potential strategies that lead to solving the organization’s needs.

The Project Roadmap…

…is a written and graphic depiction of the specific project. After the owner and OCR are both satisfied with the strategies for the project, it is time for the owner to share a draft project roadmap with key staff to get their feedback. This accomplishes two things:

    • it causes the owner to test the conclusions on a personal level;
    • it gets the key staff to buy into the planning and strategies for a construction project.

Next, the OCR will draft a written proposal for how he would work with the owner through the entire project. The proposal will include an outline of the Project Roadmap so the owner is clear about how the entire process will flow from planning, to working through details and working relationships, to creating the details of what the project will accomplish when finished.

After the owner is completely satisfied with the terms of the proposal and approves its implementation, the OCR will create a full Project Roadmap. This will be a detailed written and graphic representation for the owner of what to expect at every step in the project process.

The Roadmap will recommend to the owner how the organization’s staff will need to interface with the OCR and other anticipated consultants. It will include recommendations about how the staff should help create an Architectural Program that will define the final goals of the project. It will also define the legal relationships between the anticipated parties who will help accomplish the final result anticipated.

Watch for Owner Construction Representative – Part 2 in the near future…
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