Structuring Requirements in a Multi-Project Environment in the Construction Industry: A Life Cycle Perspective

Publication: Research - peer-reviewArticle in proceedings – Annual report year: 2012


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Being in control of requirements in building projects is vital, since it helps securing the often small profit margins and the reputation of the responsible company. Hence this research aims to introduce requirements management to the construction industry. By means of case study and action research conducted at a Danish construction syndicate producing sandwich elements made from High Performance Concrete and insulation materials it is demonstrated that requirements management successfully can be used in construction. Since requirements management as of today has not found its use in this industry, yet, success is here defined as an accomplished and accepted implementation of requirements management processes that are used by the relevant project members in their daily work and where the benefits of implementing requirements management outweighs the cost of invested resources. Furthermore it is argued that when running technology development, product development, product platform development, and a portfolio of building projects at the same time the use of requirements management is advantageous and an intelligent way of structuring requirements is needed. This article also demonstrates that the application of requirements management with gain can be extended to cover entire life cycles as e.g. the life cycle of a building. This is done by proposing a requirements structure that attempts to consider future events. The proposed structure is divided into the areas: company, technology, product platform, and building and covers all encountered types of requirements, e.g. functional (defines what a system is supposed to do), non-functional (defines how a system is supposed to be), technical, organizational, and even personal requirements. As a result the conducted research clearly shows that requirements management can be applied to the construction industry. At the same time it also becomes obvious that it is necessary to open doors to further research looking into not only using requirements databases & processes especially designed for the construction industry but also the training of key personnel in requirements management, and how the introduction of requirements management can impact the construction industry and their customers in the long run.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the ASME 2012 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences (IDETC) and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference (CIE)
Number of pages12
PublisherAmerican Society of Mechanical Engineers
Publication date2012
StatePublished - 2012


ConferenceASME 2012 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
CountryUnited States
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