It is little known that spending 20% of the commissioning fee during the project design phase can realize 80% of commissioning value in the form of quality and risk management. It is rarely acknowledged that 80% of all the problems a project will experience are embedded within the project tender drawings and specifications. These empirical observations have lead CDML to firmly believe that commissionability design reviews add extreme value for little cost.

CDML strongly advocates for a minimum of two reviews of the project design drawings and specifications. The first review should be at the end of Design Development and the final review should be at 90% Construction Drawings. The purpose of the reviews is not to remove responsibilities or liabilities from the design team, it is to provide a technical review and identify as many issues, errors, omissions and commissioning problems as possible prior to tender. Quality can be managed into a project pre-tender for very little cost. However post tender, it is a game of quality control and change orders.

A commissioning design review primarily looks for three things:

  1. Any obvious errors and omissions
  2. Good engineering practice
  3. Systems and building commissionability

A commissioning design review should be considered a quality and risk management exercise. It is a technical rather than process commissioning activity with a very high ROI.