There are several key stages involved with each project, from the original idea to the plan to completion, and even beyond.
Knowing that each initiative will have its own particular needs and characteristics, we are versatile in providing our services and responding to the client's inspirations and needs.
With that said, it encourages us to collaborate closely with you to discover your project's true value; whether it is to build the space of your aspirations or to maximise the return on investment. We have an estimated project budget of between £150,000 and £2,500,000.
We don't believe in just the provision of drawings; rather, we can provide a wide range of assistance during the course of the entire project.
Stage 0 - Strategic Definition
Although most of our competitors take an interest at stage one -
Preparation of Brief, we realise that every project has its own unique needs and characteristics. We are versatile with how we provide our services and respond to our clients' inspirations and needs. All this defines RIBA stage 0, Strategic Definition.
In the beginning, stage zero is usually very concentrated on the client's requirements, first explaining what their project is inspired to be. We know that there are two distinct needs: "perceived needs" and "actual needs". Our consultancy expertise helps identify each of those, which allows clients to consider their business priorities, and then pinpoint what those clients need to do to meet those goals. We use a procedure focused on basic observation, numerous analysis and surveying.
During this stage:
A straightforward, succinct project goal including the achievement of consistency and desired results.
Detailed analysis to consider their real needs by several tools, including using stakeholder interviews and meetings, audited headcounts, space audits and inventory surveys, and space utilisation analyses and questionnaires.
Includes building efficiency review, site assessments, and generating designs and prototype matches to model space requirements.
Stage 1 - Preparation & Brief
We will explore the alternatives for your project procurement during this stage and recommend the best procurement process.
Surveys and analysis are carried out during this stage. This could include building survey, and below-ground utility searches to identify all related unknowns. We will consider any budget constraints and any plans or design preferences that you will have.
We will discuss the project feasibility and potential design elements that include orientations, space relationships, zoning preferences and size. Following that, we will build a brief explaining the project requirements and overview, which would be considered a reference point throughout the design stages.
Site appraisals that are critical of future restrictions, opportunities and neighbouring buildings and context.
Review all current records, drawings, surveys, etc. such as floor plans.
Preliminary budget to give you an indication of the investment required.
We should also consider these possible pitfalls during the application process, which should be overcome by pre-application planning discussions.
Advice on any requirements for special sectors, experts, or expertise needs.
At this point, we invite you to explore possibilities that do not appear likely. We rarely take on traditional projects, instead, we are always trying to empower our clients with creative thoughts and stimulating insights.
Stage 2 - Concept Design
Once we have thought out what we want to do and your ideal vision for your project, we'll start to focus on outlining our thoughts through sketches. Here we begin to convert our thoughts and expectations into preliminary ideas that will give you an insight into how we might fulfil your aspirations.
We will then expand on this and create comprehensive designs using 3D Building Information Modeling (BIM) and Virtual Reality (VR) to bring the concept to fruition. As well as giving you a more comprehensive idea on your project's exterior and interior, it also helps us effectively prepare, design, build and oversee the project.
We will explore the feasibility of implementing sustainable green building strategies and technologies. Also, if there is no cost consultant QS appointed to work on the project, we will work with vendors within our supply chain to achieve cost estimates.
Furthermore, we will carry out:
Regular design meetings with you and the team to gather your feedback and input and share any concerns.
Inclusion/coordination of any consultant information
Considerations around the spatial arrangement, the visual impact and aesthetics of the property, and the best materials to use
Outline specifications, schedules of accommodation and a planning strategy for full transparency
The cost plan with procurement options
A programme and phasing strategy
A view of buildability and construction logistics
This is the point at which your dream gets extremely thrilling – at this point, you will be able to visualise what your amazing new project would look like accurately. Following sign-off, we move from an early concept stage into a more mature design of design development.
Stage 3 - Detailed Design
During this point, we will plan the defined concept, organise and update the structural design, building services programmes, outline requirements, cost details, and project strategies. We will improve our process by adding additional layers of details and ensuring consistency with our main stakeholders.
Planning can be daunting and can come with multiple unknowns. Our main priority is to make this move as simple as possible for you, and we will put in all the effort required to ensure a seamless and uncomplicated procedure for you. Your conceptual designs are translated into detailed drawings for the planning department to review.
This stage also includes:
The final layout, including a visual representation of designs.
Branding and graphics.
Material samples and finishes used, including any art-work.
Furniture specification and a full overview of all details, including lighting, joinery, etc.
Coordinated MEP services strategy to ensure successful incorporation
Building regulations plan and coordination with the landlord
Submission of any planning applications
We will never promise that a planning proposal will be approved, but we continue to work extensively with the planning authority to achieve a successful application. Communication is essential to any project, and we work tirelessly to ensure any delays are limited.
Stage 4 - Technical Design
Upon approval from the planning department, we will develop your project design to meet building codes and regulations, and have comprehensive construction plans for contractors and builders to quote.
When the contractor receives all of the construction plans, they submit their estimates. This is a comprehensive stage of our work, built to ensure transparency, excellence in the procedure and an outstanding outcome. In our design-led approach, we strive to deliver simple, comprehensive construction requirements that help ensure efficiency.
This stage includes:
A construction package with working drawings
A landlord approval pack
Review of the FF&E package including furniture mock-ups and showroom visits
Risk assessments for the construction phase
Detailed fit-out programme which cites critical dates and key milestones
Building regulations submission
Information on all sub-contractors
Assistance with value engineering as necessary
We are pleased to show the contractors the facilities, answer any questions they may have, and collaborate with them on the project. Our technical experience will guarantee that you will get accurate, trustworthy and cost-effective development while working with your chosen contracting firm.
Stage 5 - Construction
Our role moving forward would depend upon the project's nature and how the project will be procured. Read more about the different procurement routes here.
We would inform you of the type of building contract you could use. The Contractor takes the responsibility of the property to allow construction to proceed.
In addition to providing construction services, we can also provide contract administration services during the length of the construction period. We will conduct regular site visits; documented and findings documented. We will inspect the works to ensure that they comply with the Contract Documents, and we will make recommendations as required.
In our role, we will closely deal with any construction issues that arise due to construction works. We share documents with both the Building Control Officer and the Authorised Inspector to acquire their sign-offs.
This part of the evaluation process includes:
Preparation of contracts.
Construction management and site inspections.
We will closely monitor the project's deadlines and coordinate with the Contractor to make sure you are utilising your new space as planned and without avoidable delays.
Stage 6 - Handover
After work is approved as 'practically complete' in a traditional type of procurement, a 'Defects Liability Period' is generally issued.
Any defects must be reported, and the Contractor is expected to resolve the issues.
We will compile a list of defects for the Contractor for rectification. Retention shall be retained from the Contractor until the end of the Defect Liability Period.
At this point in the process, we will:
Undertake final inspections to ensure that your property has been completed to the highest quality and follows the specification.
Provide as-built information
Provide recommendations and assistance on a resolution of any defects
Agree on the final account and issue a Completion Certificate
Once the Contractor has rectified any defects, we will issue a Certificate for the retentions' payment. Once the Contractor has fulfilled their obligations at the end of this stage, we will issue the Final Account and our Final Certificate for the Works.
Stage 7 - In Use
While the project is completed during stage 6, Design-itude still has something unique to offer our clients, which sets us apart from our competition.
Here, we remain close to our clients by effectively managing
additional needs when they emerge and performing post-occupation research if requested.
Often after a project is complete, the client needs more information about any of it. This condition can arise, for example, when a client wants to carry out more construction work or change any existing spaces.
We do not typically provide a fee for this stage at the start of a project; however, we may have it upon request. Upon the completion of your project, we might contact you for your feedback. This feedback is very beneficial to us as it informs our future projects and working methodology.