What Does Design Build Mean in Office Renovations?

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design build in office renovationsA design build approach is typically associated with new construction projects, such as building a new warehouse facility, commercial space or residential home. However, design build also applies to office renovations, where it delivers several important advantages.

Before answering the question “what does design build mean in office renovations?”, it is helpful to take a step back and look at the traditional project delivery model(often referred to as design-bid-build), and highlight where it falls short.

Problems with the Traditional Delivery Model

With a traditional delivery model, the owner of the office renovation (i.e. the business) must manage two separate relationships: one with the designer who creates the plans, and one with the contractor who fulfils them. Furthermore, designers typically hire and manage sub-consultants, while contractors hire and manage sub-contractors. What is the problem with this setup?

Well, in an ideal world, designers and contractors (and their respective sub-consultants and sub-contractors) would be in full alignment, and work cohesively and efficiently as part of a larger team that is focused on one clear goal: meeting the mutual client’s needs. However, the real world can be far from ideal, and this is one of those cases! 

That is because with a traditional delivery model, project owners are often forced to play mediator, middleman, negotiator and peacemaker between designers and contractors who, unfortunately, do not see eye-to-eye on all issues. At the same time, project owners must monitor and manage two separate and highly complex agreements; each with its own schedule, budget and scope. To say that this is difficult is an understatement. For many project owners, it is a risky, costly and stressful ordeal.

Now that we have looked at the background, we can move on an answer the question: “what does design build mean in office renovations? 

The Design Build Solution 

With design build, both the design team and the contractor team work together under a single, unified agreement. There are three fundamental advantages of this approach:  

  • Accountability: Project owners do not have to unravel conflicting reports or issues. There is only one entity to deal with, which means that there is only one source of accountability, and one efficient line of communication.
  • Cost Control: All design costs are identified and integrated into the budget before work begins vs. introduced at a later date, when they can be significantly higher than anticipated.
  • Efficiency: All stakeholders — including sub-consultants and sub-contractors — work together as part of a cohesive unit, since their success is linked. In other words: they either all succeed together, or none of them can individually. This interdependence goes a long way towards facilitating cooperation and cohesion! 

The Bottom Line 

In light of the above, the answer to the question “what does design build in office renovation mean?” is clear: it means that project owners can expect to save money, time, effort and stress.

To learn more, contact the Key Interiors team today. We are a leader in design build office renovations, and have the in-house expertise and resources to meet our clients’ high standards and expectations. Your consultation with us is free, and we would be pleased to show you our extensive portfolio of design build work.

For more information on signs that your office needs a renovation now instead of later, download our FREE eBook:


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