The HK$400 million (£33 million), 4 year term contract for slope maintenance in the New Territories and northern outlying islands was the Hong Kong government’s first to be procured using the NEC3 Term Service Contract (TSC).
It was also the first NEC contract to be awarded by the Architectural Services Department (ArchSD), with contractor China Road and Bridge Corporation being appointed in April 2012.
In all other aspects the project is similar to other regional slope maintenance term contracts procured by ArchSD, with the scope encompassing delivery of routine as well as ad-hoc slope and vegetation maintenance services and works. The TSC is ideally suited to this, with ad hoc works procured via task orders.
Option X19 task orders
Among the three main options available under TSC – option A (priced contract), option C (target contract) and option E (cost-reimbursable contract) – ArchSD selected option A.
According to HY Chan, chief property services manager, "The option A contractual approach, with a price list and task order mechanism via secondary option X19, is capable of accommodating the employer’s needs using the schedule of rates for term contracts published by ArchSD.
"While the risk for slope maintenance term contracts is relatively low due to certainty and a well-defined scope of maintenance services, and the task orders are generally minor in nature, the selection of option A offers another advantage of allowing the employer’s and contractor’s resources to be better deployed."
Active partnering relationship
"Entering into the third year of the term contract, an active and positive partnering relationship has developed steadily through top management engagement as well as partnering workshops, regular risk-reduction meetings and close collaboration between the client and contractor," says Chan.
"Certainly the partnering culture in NEC contract administration requires a continual commitment from both parties to sustain its success."
Benefits of using NEC
- NEC3 Term Service Contract ideally suited to undertaking ad hoc maintenance works through task orders.
- Option A, with a price list and task order mechanism via secondary option X19, can use employer’s existing schedule of rates for term contracts.
- Allows employer’s and contractor’s resources to be better deployed.
- Encourages development of an active and positive partnering relationship through top management engagement, partnering workshops, regular risk-reduction meetings and close collaboration between the client and contractor.