O P I N I O N
Taking the time to get it right the first time will lead to faster approvals, better plans, and overall project quality.
W e all know that driving too fast can kill, but speed can also kill your project. If you were to ask any quality architect or engineer how they are doing, you are likely to hear that they’re very busy! Yes, our economy is good and as such getting the right team on a project can be a challenge, especially if you are in a hurry to get things moving. However, it is more important than ever to not use timing solely as a determination of hiring the right team.
I spoke about the importance of quality and the perils of going with the low-cost proposal in my last article, but it’s equally important to give a quality firm the time they need to do a project correctly. I am sure almost all of us can think back to a school paper we wrote at the last minute and thinking that if you had more time, it would have been much better and may have resulted in a better grade. The same holds true for engineers and surveyors. Rushing can lead to inadequate surveys or designs that are not well thought out and, even if approved for permit, could lead to construction issues. It is no surprise that the quality firms are the ones that might have greater lead times. Typically, firms that can jump on a project immediately are not the ones that will produce quality results. As professional civil engineers and land surveyors,
we know that quality can make or break a project. Unfortunately, too many people look at our profession as a commodity, and if a firm can finish a project cheaper and faster, that’s what many clients will go with. As with cost not making a project cheaper, faster does not actually mean the project will be done faster. A great example is a request we received for a topographic and boundary survey and subsequent civil engineering services for a luxury house on a large lot in a tough jurisdiction. Having a great deal of experience in this jurisdiction, we let the client know, based on our current workload, what the ultimate time frame would be to get the survey done correctly. Our estimate was not out of line with other quality surveyors in the area. They said our timeline was unacceptable and opted for a surveyor who could
See JIM TOBY, page 4
THE ZWEIG LETTER MARCH 7, 2022, ISSUE 1431
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