Richard Tudor, Technical Director at WSP Group, explains how BSRIA's series of design checks publications helps the company to deliver a high quality design service.
WSP's life-cycle approach to projects provides a framework for covering a project from inception to completion. The life-cycle process integrates the key elements of design, including health and safety, quality, project management, along with WSP's on-line knowledge base and its financial system.
The framework is equipped with a navigation tool for engineers to get easy access to relevant documents and other information via the WSP intranet. BSRIA Design Checks for HVAC is one of the tools that the framework makes available to WSP engineers.
The design topics are presented as individual worksheets. Each of the 60 separate design guidance sheets is accessible via the WSP intranet. The worksheets provide information and guidance on design inputs, outputs and practical watch points for the key building services design topics.
The guidance sheets are detailed and relevant to many design applications. The guidance promoted improvement, adds value, evaluates technical risk and addresses the brief to ensure compliance.
Although the guidance cannot be fully comprehensive or cover every possible design scenario, the worksheets provide engineers with a useful tool in evaluating designs as part of the design review process. Breaking the BSRIA publications down into separate worksheets also provides easier navigation for the engineer.
The design check publications contain design watchpoints, based on the collected experience of industry design engineer. This condensed form of guidance provides a useful aide memoir for many issues that determine key design decisions. Again, they do not pretend to be exhaustive or definitive, but they do represent real lessons learned. After all, the simplest design point that is overlooked or assumed in a design can cause the greatest trouble.
The latest design check publications, Design Checks for Public Health and Design Check for Electrical Services, are extremely useful additions to the portfolio of technical guidance.
Every project is different, and has differing needs. As engineers are under increasing pressure to deliver a well co-ordinated, accurate and integrated design, tools such as the BSRIA design checks series will not only help them deliver high quality designs, but provide a framework for continual improvement and valuable training for young designers.
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