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  • Matthew Klinefelter

Do You Read The Instructions?


Are you one of these people that likes to throw the instructions to one side and work it out for yourself? Well if you do this with an NEC contract you could be in for some problems. The contract is very clear about what a programme should contain so why is it that so many fail to meet the mark? Are the instructions being read and understood?


Here is a paraphrased contents of what a Clause 31 (Your initial programme) should contain:


🔸 The Contract Dates

🔸 Planned Completion (Note this is different to Contract Completion)

🔸 Order and timing the contractor plans to do the works

🔸 Dates the contractor plans to meet the conditions of key dates AND to complete other work needed to allow the employer and others to do their work.

🔸 Provision for Float, Time Risk Allowance, H&S Requirements & procedures required by the contract

🔸 Dates when the contractor will need Access, Acceptances, Plant & Material & Information from others

🔸 A statement on how the contractor plans to do the works identifying the principal equipment & other resources.

🔸 Other information stated in the works information.


The last point above will cover any contract specific requirements as some clients may amend the contract to add in further stipulations like earned value management etc... Its important to include for these aswell as they are also a reasonable grounds for rejection if missed from the submission.


If your not showing all of this information then there is a valid reason for the programme to be rejected. Below are the 4 reasons the Project Manager can reject a programme submission.


🔸 the Contractors plans which it shows are not practicable

🔸 it does not show the information which the contract requires

🔸 it does not represent the Contractors plans realistically or

🔸 it does not comply with the works information


Now a programme submission is much more than just a programme. Its important that practicality is used but agree any format with your client prior to submission. The use of supporting documentation can fulfil some of the content requirements if submitted with the programme so don't panic too much.


There are further requirements for Clause 32 programme updates:

🔸 The actual progress achieved on each operation and its effect upon the timing of the remaining work,

🔸 The effects of implemented compensation events,

🔸 How the contractor plans to deal with any delays and to correct any notified defects and

🔸 Any other changes with the contractor proposes to make to the Accepted Programme.


These requirements are in addition to the original list.


So the NEC does have a pretty good list of instructions although sometimes open to interpretation. Usually surrounding what is practicable or realistic. The contract shows the information that should be contained within a programme.


Despite this programmes often fall short of one or more of these requirements. Its always a good idea to run through these requirements as a checklist before submitting a programme. Put yourself in the clients shoes, if you were reviewing the programme would you accept it in line with the contract?


If you need assistance with production or reviewing programmes then contact us.



KCES Limited provide Tender, Delivery, Change & Delay programme management services to the construction industry. For more information on how we can help click one of the links below:


Tender Programmes

Programme Management

Change Management

Project Compliance

Online Training


For any further information or to discuss any programme requirements contact us on:

Tel: 01379 668860

Email: info@kceslimited.co.uk


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