An integrated requirements management system for construction projects

Within the AEC/FM Industry, the current paper-based system used to manage client requirements information and the change request process lacks efficiency and effectiveness. Traditionally, requirements management has principally been focused at the early stages of a construction project where elicited client requirements information is used as the basis for design and does not extend to later phases. Links between corresponding requirements at different phases do not exist which makes traceability difficult. There are no methods to keep track of client requirements and the changes in a satisfactory way that take a whole lifecycle approach. Construction organisations, like other engineering related businesses, are turning to computer systems (to replace current manual and paper intensive processes) in their quest for practical ways to facilitate requirements information management. This paper presents a prototype system for client requirements information management taking a whole lifecycle approach. It comprises of integrated components made up of a repository and change management system (CMS). The prototype was developed following case studies of construction projects and interviews with construction experts in order to fully understand the need for such a system. The applicability and effectiveness of the prototype will be validated using a focus group made up of various construction stakeholders and academic practitioners.