USACE has adopted industry accepted practices (i.e. ASTM E1699 and SAVE International® Value Methodology Standard) to implement the statutory intent to utilize the Value Methodology to reduce program and acquisition costs, improve performance, enhance quality, and foster the use of innovation. In addition, the USACE VE Workshop Standard and Evaluation Index were developed to establish the expectations of what must be accomplished in order to meet and demonstrate compliance with the statutory and Federal requirements for VE. Please refer to the HQ USACE VE website for the USACE VE Workshop Standard, USACE VE Evaluation Index and HQ USACE FAST 1 and 2 Workshop Proceedings that developed these standards.
The USACE VE workshop standards requires a multidisciplinary workshop format; performed by agency or contract personnel qualified in the Value Methodology (i.e. CVS) with the expert application of continuous function analysis; utilization of the Standard Value Methodology Job Plan and focus on expanding the solution-set, analyzing functions, and supplementing the knowledgebase of the project delivery team (PDT). The USACE VE Evaluation Index evaluates compliance with policy, management procedures, workshop (including pre- and post-workshop effort), and outcomes.
The SAVE International® VM Standard defines the six step Job Plan (Information, Function Analysis, Creativity, Evaluation, Development, and Presentation phases), the requirement to have a multidisciplinary team, led by a qualified team leader with expertise in the application of this process, and in a workshop environment. The USACE VE Standard recognizes, accepts, and adopts industry standards as being essential components that create the framework for success; however, what is accomplished within this framework is what is truly most important. Merely stepping through the Job Plan does not guarantee the desired outcome is achieved. The intent of the USACE VE Workshop Standard supplement to the industry standards is to improve the outcome and consistency of USACE VE workshops.
The scope and scale of a VE workshop should be carefully matched to the project under study. The workshop itself should allow sufficient time to accomplish the job plan described above. Large or complex projects require a correspondingly longer workshop to address the expanded work scope. In addition to the workshop, a VE study includes pre- and post-workshop tasks. Pre-workshop tasks include determining the study scope, schedule, team size and composition, and retrieving pre-study project data and documents for team review including project scope, cost, schedule, and risk management plans. Post-workshop tasks include report review and comment, scheduling and holding implementation meetings, resolution of outstanding technical issues, and preparation and distribution of the final report.
In today’s environment of escalating costs, VE can be an essential cost control tool for the design and construction process. It is the most effective tool available to achieve the required functions at a minimum cost without sacrificing quality. The strength of VE comes from the use of function as the key criterion for the consideration of alternatives to design issues, the power of the structured team dynamics, and the experience of the team members.
An effective VE study will result in:
Validating key project decisions
Keeping the project within budget
Reducing operation and maintenance activities and their costs
Improving project performance, function, and quality
Reducing design and construction problems
Insuring that client needs are given top priority throughout the project