Our guiding project approach is to combine our proven technical services with a collaborative client relationship so that a cost-effective joint approach is implemented.
Our project delivery approach is to plan, design, and construct projects in concert with our clients and their staff so that all opinions and ideas are considered, and the entire team has ownership and a vested interest in the final product. Carrying this inclusive, collaborative approach to all tasks is essential to ensuring a seamless, cost-effective delivery of a project.
Furthermore, we understand that each phase of the project delivery is critical, and each successive step is only as good as the work done in previous steps. An analogy we often use is that of an elevated storage tank where you work from the ground up and the soundness of the structure is only as good as the work done on previously completed items.
Preliminary Engineering is the foundation for all successful projects and proper, thorough planning during this phase of a project can save time and cost during design and construction.
The preliminary phase establishes a basis for the design, initial cost opinions, and provides the client with a recommended plan for moving forward. At CJS Conveyance we begin this phase, no matter the size or complexity of the project, with a Project Management Plan (PMP) that will document the key elements of the project for the project team, including the client. Upon completion of the PMP and a project kick-off meeting, we proceed with the preliminary engineering tasks for the particular project, which may consist of preparing a preliminary engineering report (PER), feasibility study, an environmental assessment (EA), engineering alternative analysis (EAA), schematic design or another more specific evaluation. Reports will be formatted to meet the client’s needs including outlines required by funding agencies administering project funding.
Our designs are an extension of the preliminary engineering, keeping a consistent approach with the recommended and accepted plan agreed upon with the client.
In the design development process we utilize available existing reliable resources and data where possible to reduce data collection costs. Furthermore, we implement innovative design approaches to expedite the project design schedule and save additional costs. These approaches, coupled with our extensive design experience are leveraged to provide a high-quality design that meets the client’s current design standards and current regulatory requirements.
We foster a collaborative environment by conducting design workshops with our clients at multiple stages during design. This allows for the client’s key personnel to be closely involved in the development of the design documents to ensure the needs of both the management and operations staff are being met. Construction cost opinions are prepared at each incremental phase of design for review with the client to ensure the original budget is being maintained and opportunities to save costs are recognized and implemented when possible.
At CJS Conveyance we understand that permitting shouldn’t begin at the end of the design development phase.
Our project team engages regulatory agencies during the preliminary engineering and design development phase to receive their preliminary input so that potential concerns or pitfalls can be addressed early in the process. This minimizes the number of reviews during the final permitting stage and allows the project to be ready for bid as soon as possible. Our staff has developed long-standing and trusted relationships with local, state, and federal regulatory agencies through our years of designing and permitting projects and these relationships are key to success during the permitting phase.
No matter how successful a project is during the preliminary, design, and permitting phases of a project, the project’s overall success is highly dependent on the quality of the bid documents and the contractor who is awarded the bid.
Contract documents must include clear and concise plans as well as through technical specifications that are developed for the project. Client requirements, funding requirements, and local/regional requirements must be addressed in the contract documents so that the prospective bidders have a clear understanding of their responsibilities. Our project team works with our clients to structure the bid form such that payment items align with their preferred methods of payment and tracking of quantities in the field.
Additionally, we advocate for utilizing alternate bids where there are opportunities to increase competitive bidding and maximize potential cost savings. We also include in our bid phase services the option of prequalifying bidders and/or equipment manufacturers for our clients. Prequalification can help ensure the desired quality of work and equipment is received during construction of the project.
Our project team has provided prequalification on numerous projects for various clients throughout the state and are well versed in the prequalification solicitation development, review, and implementation process.
Perhaps the most critical element of a project’s success is the translation of the engineer’s design to actual construction. This requires constant communication between the Engineer, acting on the Owner’s behalf, and the Contractor to ensure that the intent of the design is being realized. We understand this dynamic well as we have performed construction administration duties on nearly every project we have designed in our career.
Effective construction administration begins with a detailed pre-construction meeting which includes all stakeholders and a point by point discussion of critical activities, safety procedures, contacts, schedule, communication protocols, permit requirements, and numerous other items. Once the initial coordination is complete we provide detailed review of shop drawings to ensure compliance with the specifications prior to the commencement of the work. Once procedures and material requirements are established the most critical element occurs, the actual construction. Administration of the construction work involves constant communication with the field representative and contractor’s project manager. Additional formal communication is also provided through construction progress meetings which can occur periodically with spacing consistent with the complexity of the work, i.e. weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly. We understand that when construction is occurring there is no small issue and no time to be spared when resolving any issue.
While final completion and closeout of construction is primarily the responsibility of the contractor, we take our role as the Engineer seriously in enforcing the closeout requirements. We understand that bringing a project to full completion can be a challenge and a source of frustration for a client. We work closely with the contractor(s) to make sure the proper documentation is in provided in a timely manner such that final payments can be made and the client can close out the project. Furthermore, the project is not complete until record drawings and engineering certifications have been issued. We work diligently to complete record drawing responsibilities in close coordination with the contractor and client and submit certifications to the appropriate agencies.
Following each project, the project manager will conduct a project closeout interview in person with the client to discuss the details of the completed project. These one-on-one meetings are designed to facilitate a candid discussion about the project successes and potential areas for improvement. We feel this is important so that we can stay in touch with our client’s needs and continuously improve our service.
Quality Control and Assurance (QC/QA) is vital to a successful engineering practice and something we take very serious at CJS Conveyance.
While our team provides years of experience in our field of engineering, we understand that we are all human and susceptible to human error. Therefore, we have developed a vigorous QC/QA program that spans from development of proposals and statements of qualifications to construction closeout. We have developed a series of QC/QA measures that includes checklists, peer reviews, and documentation tracking as well as feedback from clients. Our proposals, contracts, preliminary engineering reports, cost opinions, design and bid documents and other deliverables undergo these QC/QA measures before being delivered to a client or regulatory agency.
Our team has developed valuable relationships with several minority and woman owned businesses over the years that we trust to provide dependable, quality service.
These companies complement the services we provide, and we take pride in sharing opportunities with these companies to help foster their success. We strive to meet and exceed minority and woman owned business participation goals established by our clients and provide our partner businesses with important and well-defined roles in our project work.