How Do Project Designers Cause Delays In Construction Projects?

Foreign consultants and designers in the Gulf States construction industry have become major party impacting all parties, clients, consultants and also contractors. Numerous consultants too have become a part of disputes and claims in case of projects that exceed budgetary and schedule targets.

Delays remain the most common and the most costly problems that construction projects can face, and numerous construction projects show arrangements between professionals in projects that could be contributing towards these delays and cost overruns.

It is important to recognize, classify, and identify the effects of design delay for all stages of project design. It’s critical however to determine the causes of these delays by choosing the right expert witness for the job.

Ideally, the right delay expert possesses the right kind of skills and experience to do the job. Read on to know the stages of project design followed by the possible causes of delays by project entities.

delays in construction

Project Designers Stages And Delay In Projects

The project design is finalized only after the completion of comprehensive documents that are prepared by experts taking into consideration their process and procedures. The delays will be determined by expert witnesses.

The preparation takes a long time as the information being used is often very crucial and complex. Read on to know the stages of project design followed by the causes of delay cause by the consultant/ project designers:

Stages Of Project Design

The stages of the project design are put together in a way that they aren't only constructible but are according to the wishes of the client. The common stages of project design include:

  • Briefing
  • Feasibility
  • Outlining proposal
  • Design of schemes
  • Delays through the Project designers
  • Detailed and comprehensive design
  • Preparation of contract
  • Construction and commissioning

Its important for the resident engineers to be familiar with the project stages, in order to be able to argue, and communicate with the different project entities, mainly the contractor of the project.

Delays Caused By Project Designers/Consultants

Lack Of Communication

Due to a limited interaction between the consultant and the client, the client may not realize the true potential of the design firms and eventually become frustrated in case they are inexperienced. This may eventually lead to delays in the project.

Incomplete Drawings

Incomplete drawings remain a major factor responsible for the delay in construction projects.  So much so, that majority of project delays can be traced back to the inconsistency and unavailability of completed drawings, wrong dimensions of walls and openings, insufficient details of complex locations and generally inconsistent and insufficient detailing.

Lack Of Information

A lack of information about contract types, conditions mentioned in the contracts, major and minor design issues, and specifications not according to standards requires repetitive rejection of design and leads to redesigning. This is also a significant cause resulting in the delay of projects.

A Conflict Between Structural & Service Drawings

The schematics and detailed design may also become a cause for delay in disputes between the service and structural drawings. The whole process may be delayed till the approval of the ultimate detailed design and of the tender documents by the relevant authorities.

Mismanagement Of Contact

The inability of Consultant or project designer to create and manage contract document, Bill of quantities (BOQ) and drawings approved incorporating a huge margin of omissions and errors.

Underestimation Of The Design Process

The constants or project designers often underestimate the importance of meticulous management for the whole design process which leads to critical delays in the project.

Miscellaneous Causes

Inspections while the work is being done, approval of documents, submittals, approval of project material and site, the technical experience of the site team also result in delays.


The three major types of delays in projects may be due to the contractor, the consultant or the owner. Regardless of the kind of delay, only the best can help determine the actual cause of the delay. This leaves no choice but to hire delay experts to determine the cause or the causes involved in the project.