Delay Analysis

Understanding and addressing delays to increase project efficiency.

Delay Analysis: What is it exactly?

Delay analysis is the process of identifying what caused the delay and what impact it had on your project’s timeline.

This process requires a person who is an industry expert and has extensive understanding, experience and first-hand knowledge about construction projects, delay analysis, and expert judgment in conducting a detailed claim analysis.

Most delay claims issued are after the project completion. Hence, it requires a thorough examination of all project-related documents, including, correspondences, minutes of meetings, site diaries, method statements, and schedules. There’s a need to accurately identify delay events and changes made during the construction period, and adequately assess the impact of said delay concerning completing the said construction project.
Delay Analysis services by RPMSDelay Analysis services by RPMS

Understanding The Different Delay Types

Delay analysis is the process of identifying what caused the delay and what impact it had on your project’s timeline.

This process requires a person who is an industry expert and has extensive understanding, experience and first-hand knowledge about construction projects, delay analysis, and expert judgment in conducting a detailed claim analysis.

Most delay claims issued are after the project completion. Hence, it requires a thorough examination of all project-related documents, including, correspondences, minutes of meetings, site diaries, method statements, and schedules. There’s a need to accurately identify delay events and changes made during the construction period, and adequately assess the impact of said delay concerning completing the said construction project.

Excusable / Non-Excusable Delays

As the name suggests, excusable delays pertain to delays proving your contractor was not at fault. Typically, both parties agree to a time extension.

Non-excusable delays, on the other hand, are established based on the evidence presented by the data analysis.

Concurrent Delays

The concurrent delay happens when two or more delays resulting from independent causes overlap during the same period. The most typical situation occurs when both the owner’s and the contractor’s actions are sufficient independently to cause a delay, and both delays impact the same time. The two delays do not have to occur at the exact time. But each delay must affect the completion date of the project. Each delay must impact the critical path if the other delay is removed from the analysis. Concurrent delay can also occur when a delay caused by either party overlaps with an excusable delay such as abnormal weather.

The following is a typical scenario. A project completed after the contract completion date and the owner seeks to recover liquidated damages for each delayed day. To recover LDs, the owner must show that contract performance was not substantially completed on time. To defend against the owner’s claims of liquidated damages, the contractor can show that its delay was excusable, or the contractor can show the owner was responsible for a concurrent delay. If the owner is responsible for a concurrent delay, the owner cannot recover liquidated damages—unless the contractor has waived it right to assert concurrent delay.
Recent decisions may signal a change in how courts treat a contractor’s claim of concurrent delay. The owner’s defences to concurrent delay are not themselves new, but courts may become more receptive, rendering it more difficult for contractors to assert concurrent delay successfully.

Most prime construction contracts include provisions requiring written notice of delay events and specific contractual requirements for how and when a contractor must submit requests for time and money. Increasingly, courts are requiring strict compliance from the contractor with these provisions. Suppose a contractor fails to preserve its right to a time extension for an owner caused delay or an excusable delay such as adverse weather. In that case, it’s precludable from asserting concurrent delay to offset a liquidated damages claim. Failure to give proper notice and request time may also preclude a contractor from making an affirmative claim for delay damages.

It is crucial for contractors that all field administrative personnel know the contract’s requirements to notice delays and request time extensions. Regardless of the specific contract terms, it is essential to give immediate or at least prompt notice of any event that impacts scheduled completion of the project. A contractor would face an uphill battle to convince a court to find concurrent delay or grant a time extension if the contractor did not raise the delay until after the project completion. This is true even if the owner caused a significant portion of the delay, which would otherwise give the contractor a solid defence of concurrent delay and the potential for an affirmative claim.

To know and follow the contract terms is merely common sense. Still, it is easier than one would think to miss a notice requirement where the concurrent delay is involved. When the owner undeniably causes a delay, a contractor may assume that the owner is aware of the event and concludes that notice is unnecessary. If, for example, an owner failed to provide site access due to a permitting issue, a contractor could easily assume that it would not need to follow the formal notice procedures since the owner, having communicated with the contractor regarding the delay, is aware of the delay. This is a dangerous and potentially expensive assumption. Even in the most seemingly straightforward cases, contractors should always follow the strict letter of the contract in order to preserve their ability to assert concurrent delay and claim delay damages.

On the flip side, owners should likewise be mindful of the contract terms and vigilant in enforcing them. Owners who do not demand strict compliance at the outset of a project may find they have inadvertently changed the contract’s terms by implied mutual consent. Strict enforcement of notice and claims submission requirements allows owners to defend contractor claims for delay damages and avoid concurrent delay as a defence to assessing LDs.

Owners should also carefully monitor contractor performance. Even in instances where a contractor has perfectly preserved a claim for delay damages, a concurrent delay caused by the contractor or any subcontractor or supplier for whom the contractor is responsible may be used as an offset to avoid the delay damages claim.

Concurrent delay is a double-edged sword for owners and contractors. Both owners and contractors need to be vigilant in compliance with contract terms. Both parties should also use increasingly accurate scheduling tools and more sophisticated methods to estimate the financial impacts of a delay. Concurrent delay can be a good defence, but only if the proper foundation was in place during contract performance.

Critical, Non-Critical Delays

Non-critical – pertains to actions that did not have any significant impact, or delayed, the completion of a project.

Critical – pertains to specific actions that delayed the completion of a project.

To conclude, the analyst must examine the agreed contract between the project owner and contractor and pinpoint the contractor’s specific actions during this period.

Compensable and Non-Compensable Delays

Compensable delays – pertains to delays that places the project owner at a monetary loss, and where compensation is required.

Non-Compensable delays – pertains to delays where a contractor with a granted extension to finish a project without being forced to compensate the project owner.

As you can see, delay analysis requires absolute technical knowledge about project management, time impact analysis, and the legalities associated with construction as a whole.

Why RPMS Is A Trusted Name When It Comes To Delay Analysis?

As a company, we only hire the best people to represent our name.

Each of our planners has extensive experience in Delay Analysis Methodologies, commonly used for Delay Analysis for Extension of Time (EOT) Claims.

They are well versed in construction law and are overly capable of conducting delay analysis using Society of Construction Law (SCL) Protocols, and AACE Recommended Practices.

Some delay analysis planning strategies for client’s projects are:

Impacted-As-Planned

This involves the insertion of delay events into a baseline or as-planned schedule to determine such events’ hypothetical impact.

This method involves modifying baselines or as-planned schedules to include new activities and logic to represent delayed events.

The difference between the project completion date in the impacted as-planned schedule and the original as-planned schedule quantifies the delay.

This methodology is simple and does not require an as-built schedule. However, it is considered a hypothetical model as it does not rely on as-built data.

Collapsed-As-Built

This is the opposite of an impacted as-planned analysis and involves removing delay events from the as-built schedule. This is to determine when the project should have been completed before the delay events.

This methodology does not require an as-planned schedule or contemporaneous schedule updates. However, there’s manipulation possibility with the insertion of after-the-fact logic ties and delay events.

As-Planned-vs-As-Built

The as-planned vs as-built analysis is a technique used to compare the baseline or as-planned schedule to the as-built schedule or a schedule update reflecting progress.

This method compares the planned start and finish dates with the actual start and finish dates of activities on the as-planned critical and near-critical paths. It also identifies delayed starts, extended durations, and late finishes.

It is handy for simple projects with short durations or a single clear critical path that remains consistent throughout the entire project.

If the actual critical path deviates from the planned schedule, the accuracy of this method diminishes.

Time-Impact-Analysis

The time impact analysis (TIA) is a comprehensive technique used to analyse each delay event to calculate its impact chronologically.

This methodology quantifies each delay based on the schedule immediately before and after a delay event has taken place. Before and after the event, the difference between the project completion date determines the delay’s extent.

TIA does not require an as-built schedule and is typically straightforward and quick to perform.

This technique is widely accepted when used during the project to resolve delayed performance issues promptly. However, it is considered a hypothetical model as it does not rely on as-built data, and it can be overwhelming to perform if there are numerous delay events.

Windows Analysis

The windows analysis is a retrospective technique that divides the total project duration into smaller periods (commonly referred to as “windows”). It also quantifies the as-built critical path delays for each of these periods.

This form of analysis compares the baseline or as-planned schedule’s forecasted critical path to the as-built schedule, reflecting the as-built conditions for each selected period, and relies upon the schedules in their contemporaneous state of submission (“as-is”).

The windows analysis is easy to calculate and understand. It identifies delays as well as acceleration quantities and considers real-time conditions and actual construction progress.

However, the windows analysis is time-consuming, as it requires complete project records and is dependent on a reliable baseline or as-planned schedule and as-built performance information.

Why is RPMS your best option?

We have handled numerous high-profile projects within the region. We have used our knowledge and expertise in Delay Analysis to provide our clients with working solutions to address project delays and improve their projects’ efficiency.

No guesswork, just hard facts data that will ensure your project is done correctly and completed on time.

If you want to understand and pinpoint specific delays that could, or are plaguing your project, then get in touch with us and ask how you can leverage our Delay Analysis process.

We are RPMS, and we are your best option.