Last edited 09 Mar 2021

Integrated project team

Integrated project team is a term used by the government to describe a system of collaborative working between all of those involved in the delivery of a project on a day to day basis.

OGC guidance defined an integrated project team as being...

'...made up of the client’s project team and the supply team of consultants, constructors and specialist suppliers. It brings together the design and construction activities, with maintenance considered as well, whether or not the integrated project team will be responsible for the ongoing maintenance of the facility; it involves valued input from all parties in the supply team.'

(Ref. Achieving Excellence Guide 5 - The Integrated Project Team P4.)

It suggested that...

'...client and suppliers working together as a team can enhance whole-life value while reducing total cost, improve quality, innovate and deliver a project far more effectively than in a traditional fragmented relationship that is often adversarial. Collaborative working should be a core requirement for each element of every project. Putting it into practice through teamworking and partnering requires real commitment from all parties involved, but brings benefits that far outweigh the effort involved.'

(Ref. Achieving Excellence Guide 5 - The Integrated Project Team P4.)

The integrated project team differs from the integrated supply team as it includes the client, and a project manager if there is one, whereas the integrated supply team relates only to the main contractor and their supply chain (designers, sub contractors, suppliers, etc.). OGC guidance illustrates these relationships as shown below.


Image reproduced with permission of OGC (ref. Achieving Excellence Guide 5 - The Integrated Project Team P5.)

The integrated project team is particularly relevant on public projects as the recommended procurement routes proposed by the Government Construction Strategy are private finance initiative (PFI), prime contracting and design and build. Under these routes, the entire integrated supply team (designers, contractors, specialist suppliers and facilities managers) are appointed after the brief has been prepared, without the benefit of design.

Detailed guidance on integrated project teams was provided in the OGC guide Achieving Excellence Guide 5 - The Integrated Project Team. There was also an integration toolkit created by the Strategic Forum describing how better value can be achieved through the collaborative working of an integrated project team, which fully recognises the capabilities of all those involved in delivering a project.... ...removes the barriers between design and implementation, enabling all parties to be involved in discussion on the principles which will affect them, enabling high-quality decisions to be made on the basis of all the implications throughout the lifetime of the facility in question.....

  • a single team focused on a common set of goals and objectives delivering benefit for all concerned
  • a team so seamless, that it appears to operate as if it were a company in its own right
  • a team, with no apparent boundaries, in which all the members have the same opportunity to contribute and all the skills and capabilities on offer can be utilised to maximum effect.

(Ref. Strategic Forum: Integrated project team.)

NB: The Office of Government Commerce (OGC) OGC guidance has been archived, however, it is cited in the Government Construction Strategy and the Common Minimum Standards, and links are provided to OGC documents from government websites such as the Major Projects Authority.

The OGC gateway review process still provides one of the best and most comprehensive sets of guidance for public projects. It is for this reason that the project plan for public projects within Designing Buildings Wiki follows the OGC gateway review process.

NB: Using Two Stage Open Book and Supply Chain Collaboration, published by HMSO in 2014, defines an integrated team as ‘…the Client(s), Consultants, Tier 1 Contractor(s) and Tier 2/3 Subcontractors and Suppliers undertaking a project or programme of work.’

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