Engineering Inc. - September/October 2013 - (Page 2)

From ACEC to You ENGINEERING INC. THE OFFICIAL PUBLICATION OF THE AMERICAN COUNCIL OF ENGINEERING COMPANIES Council Responds to Misguided QBS Commentary AMERICAN COUNCIL OF ENGINEERING COMPANIES CHAIRMAN PRESIDENT & CEO VICE PRESIDENT, OPERATIONS he Council was duty-bound to respond to a recently published commentary that attempted to make the case that QBS Is Killing Our Industry. In the July issue of PSMJ’s newsletter, industry columnist Dave Burstein suggested that qualifications-based selection (QBS) should be abandoned because it is not profitable. He cited lower profit margins in government transportation work and higher margins in private industrial sectors. The Council’s response, to be published in the September issue of the same newsletter, points out that relatively low profitability in the transportation sector over the past decade tracks flat overall public investment in transportation. Even if QBS were repealed tomorrow, state DOTs would continue to face budgetary pressures—and squeeze firms accordingly. In many city and county projects not governed by QBS, profitability is even lower. Moreover, QBS represents good public policy because it protects the public’s health and safety. That’s why it has been used at the federal level since 1972 and why virtually every state has adopted the model. In the industrial sector, many successful clients are handling procurement using principles of QBS (if not the formal methodology). Cost is, of course, a factor in QBS. But cost is where it should be, on the back end of the process, after project scope and performance metrics have been established. If you flip this process and put cost on the front end, price will quickly become the dominant selection factor and design firms would be pressured to craft bids that sacrifice innovation and the use of experienced staff to win price competitions. Client agencies, for their part, would have to relearn the hard lessons of being penny-wise and pound-foolish when selecting A/E firms for public works. This issue of Engineering Inc. features an exclusive interview with Congressman Bill Shuster (see page 10), the results of an important industry growth study (see page 38), and other highly informative articles. Our Fall Conference is set for Oct. 27–30 in Scottsdale, Ariz. Among this year’s keynote speakers, Federal Highways Administrator Victor Mendez and former Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels. See you there! (See page 34.) T Gregs G. Thomopulos ACEC Chairman David A. Raymond ACEC President & CEO Gregs G. Thomopulos David A. Raymond Mary Ann Emely VICE PRESIDENT, GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS Steven Hall VICE PRESIDENT, BUSINESS RESOURCES AND EDUCATION Marie Ternieden DIRECTOR, COMMUNICATIONS and MEDIA Alan D. Crockett STAFF EDITOR Andrea Keeney 202-682-4347 SENIOR COMMUNICATIONS WRITER Gerry Donohue ACEC PUBLIC RELATIONS AND EDITORIAL ADVISORY COMMITTEE CHAIRMAN Jackie Fox McMURRY/TMG, LLC Corey Murray Jeff Kibler PROJECT MANAGER Katie Mason MANAGING EDITOR ART DIRECTOR ADVERTISING SALES Leo Hoch ACEC 1015 15th Street, NW, 8th Floor Washington, D.C. 20005-2605 202-682-4341 Engineering Inc., Volume 24, Number 5 (ISSN 1539-2694), is published bi-monthly by the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC), 1015 15th Street, NW, 8th Floor, Washington, D.C. 20005-2605. Periodicals postage paid at Washington, D.C., and at additional mailing offices. Annual subscriptions are $24 for members (included in dues as a non-deductible amount); $45 for U.S. non-members; $65 for institutional subscriptions. Back issues are $15. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Engineering Inc., c/o ACEC, 1015 15th Street, NW, 8th Floor, Washington, D.C. 20005-2605. © 2013 American Council of Engineering Companies. All rights reserved. This publication may be copied, downloaded from the ACEC website, stored in electronic or hard-copy format, and disseminated to third parties for educational and information purposes. ACEC expressly disclaims any liability for damages of any kind in connection with such copying, downloading, storage, and/or dissemination. By copying, downloading, storing and/or disseminating this publication, the recipient of this publication expressly agrees to defend, indemnify, and hold ACEC, its officers, directors, employees, volunteers and agents harmless from and against any and all losses, damages, claims, causes of action and liabilities, including reasonable attorneys’ fees and costs, arising out of or resulting from the recipient’s use of this publication. Notwithstanding the above, no part of this publication may be altered, resold, licensed, or used for any other commercial purposes without the prior written permission of ACEC. 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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Engineering Inc. - September/October 2013

Engineering Inc. - September/October 2013
Problem Solver
Personal Stake
A Map of the Future?
Foreign Delivery
Fall Conference Preview
From ACEC to You
Legislative Action
Market Watch
Business Insights
Members in the News
Mergers and Acquisitions

Engineering Inc. - September/October 2013