Skip to 0 minutes and 8 secondsIt was a complete nightmare from start to finish. It was meant to be a flagship project, but it nearly cost me my business. Well he'll never work with us again. He's taken us to court demanding compensation, and trust me we will win. Did you know that disputes over construction projects across the globe costs an average of 42 million dollars? And the biggest reason for this? The failure between clients and contractors to properly understand their obligations. Just like the situation Adam and Robbie now find themselves in. To find out more let's start at the beginning. In 2014 Glasgow was proud to host the Commonwealth Games and welcome over half a million visitors from across the globe.

Skip to 0 minutes and 51 secondsIn the build-up to the games Glasgow Council was looking at ways to accommodate officials visiting the event. The council identified a local luxury hotel, owned by Adam Curzon, near to the athletics stadium as their location of choice. But the hotel had too few rooms to meet their needs. We were approached by the council with a proposal to redevelop our hotel to accommodate over a hundred VIPs for the games, and they were happy to fund the extension. The council officer was keen to start the project as soon as possible. Adam commissioned his long-standing builder and friend, Robbie Cairns, to undertake the groundwork for the extension. He asked us to start the work before he'd a contract in place with the council.

Skip to 1 minute and 38 secondsI didn't know that at the time but I sure know now. I was open and honest with Robbie, and he agreed that we should start work straightaway. It was worth the risk for such a big contract. A month after work had started Adam was told that the council would now go to tender for the project and he would have to submit his bid just like other hotels to make the procurement process transparent and fair. My guys had been working flat out for weeks, with no pay, there's no way I was going back to tender with no guarantee of getting the job, it's ridiculous. I'm owed tens of thousands of pounds, this job nearly finished us.

Skip to 2 minutes and 14 secondsWhy do you think Robbie, the builder, found himself close to bankruptcy? And how could Adam, the hotel owner, have avoided being left with an eyesore of a hotel extension, and being taken to court in the process. This module in Contract Management Practice and Law will discuss how we can minimise the issue of legal cases in the construction industry, a problem experienced by clients and contractors across the world. This was completely avoidable, such a shame had to end like this. I had to go to court, this is my livelihood. I mean, what would you have done?

Welcome to the course

Construction contracts are different from contracts in other sectors. This video illustrates why contracts are key to the success of a construction project.

In the first week of Contract Management and Procurement: An Introduction, you’ll explore the nature of construction contracts and the principles of contract formation. You will:

  • Examine the nature of construction contracts and examine why they’re different from contracts in other sectors
  • Explore the three phases of contract management
  • Review the four key construction procurement strategies

We look forward to exploring this topic with you over the next two weeks, as well as providing you with the tools to understand how you might improve your area of practice.

Your task

Before you start your studies, reflect on your own practice and make a few notes about any issues you may have experienced with regards to contract management and procurement.

What are the questions you hope to have answered this week?

If you feel comfortable doing so, share your thoughts with other learners in the comments area.


Meet the team

Your lead educator is Dr Andrew Oyen Arewa, senior lecturer in quantity surveying and project management at Coventry University.

Dr Andrew Oyen Arewa

You can follow him and see any comments he makes via his FutureLearn profile page.

Andrew is joined by Dr Brian Ikejiaku, senior lecturer in law at Coventry University.

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This video is from the free online course:

Contract Management and Procurement: An Introduction

Coventry University