Business justification for building development
The process for completing the design and construction of a building is often divided into stages. This can be helpful in establishing milestones for the submission of progress reports, the preparation of information for approval, client gateways, and for making payments. However there is a great deal of ambiguity between the naming of stages by different organisations and the definition of what individual stages actually include (see comparison of work stages) and so it is important that appointment documents make it clear specifically what activities fall within which stage, and what level of detail is required.
Within the Designing Buildings Wiki project plans, the business justification stage is the first stage, taking place once a business need has been identified which might result in a building project. This is analogous to the ‘Strategic definition’ stage of the RIBA Plan of Work, (See comparison of work stages), but includes more preparatory client activities, undertaken before consultants are appointed.
This stage involves creating an internal team to assess whether there is justification for the project at all. In the first instance, a statement of need is prepared, which is an initial attempt to describe the possible requirements of the project. It should be stressed that this may or may not result in an actual project, and even if a project is necessary, it may not require a new building.
A preliminary business case is then prepared which is a first attempt to justify the investment required by the potential project.
If it is then considered worth investigating the project in more detail, the client may then create an internal organisational structure for the project and assesses the nature of the consultant team that would be needed to proceed with the project. The client may then develop the statement of need into an initial strategic brief which provides sufficient information about the project to allow the appointment of a consultant team.
The client should then consider whether to proceed to the next stage where a consultant team would be appointed, feasibility studies undertaken, and options assessments carried out. Clearly this would involve significant expenditure.
As the business justification stage takes place before the appointment of the main consultant team that will deliver the project, the client may wish to appoint independent client advisers to help them.
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
Featured articles and news
Christiania is an anarchist 'freetown' in Copenhagen where strange and experimental architecture has flourished.
“UK waste data needs improving” say BRE specialists, in this summary of their report into construction waste.
UandI announce new joint venture with US developer to work on office refurbishment projects.
BSRIA give critical response to Theresa May's speech on leaving the EU.
Why buildings crack, how cracks are categorised and what can be done.
Inaugurated last week, the new Elbphilharmonie concert venue; a soaring new addition to Hamburg's skyline.
Summary of a new ICE Transport journal which says improving transport infrastructure is essential to eradicating global poverty.
BRE look at a new government report into the accuracy of heat meters.
Herzog & de Meuron get planning permission for revamp of Chelsea FC football stadium.
UK-GBC green paper proposes more powers for cities on new-build housing.
The Pompidou Centre – not a monument but an event.
Designing Buildings Wiki talks to the founder of the world's first indoor biophilic gym, now open in London.