Construction process model: Generic present-state systematisation by IDEF0

Vesa Karhu, Matti Keitilä, Pertti Lahdenperä

    Research output: Book/ReportReport

    6 Citations (Scopus)


    There is a need for improved co-ordination and performance of the building process. Means to analyse, plan and manage the building process have to be developed. The construction process involves many parties and, thus, special focus should be on the interrelated tasks of the numerous parties, i.e. communication and interfaces. Presently, the parties processes are usually considered separate each discipline having its own tasks and limits. Also, concepts and their interpretation vary according to the party and, in general, the used unsystematic and mainly verbal examination is not unambiguous even from the viewpoint of a single party. Thus, this study has modelled the overall construction process systematically creating a generic state-of-the-art model that covers the design and construction of a building project from the conception of the project in a client's mind to its completion for handover and use. The main focus has been on the functions and flows of the process since it was found that such an aspect might be the most critical in the development of the building procedures. Correspondingly, the IDEF0 method was employed. In this method, activities are described by boxes while arrows connect the boxes and represent interfaces or interconnections between the boxes. The method also distinguishes the various flow-types as control, input and mechanism on the one hand, and output on the other hand. Natural language is combined with graphic presentation. The resulting process model covers the activities done by the client, various design professionals and the general contractor. The model includes more than 300 activities and considerably more flows. Definitions are also offered for flows whenever the contents may be open to interpretation and, moreover, an English - Finnish glossary is built for all flows and activities included. Naturally, the model has also been reviewed and the needed further development and utilisation is suggested in the report. The reference model can be subjected to various view-dependent examinations and functions as a platform for more specific models it is not intended to be taken as the definitive solution. The model supports communication and helps in attaining a common understanding of process related issues. Generally, the modelling approach also supports process re-engineering and improvement efforts as well as new means of building process management, especially when combined with modern computer-aided applications.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationEspoo
    PublisherVTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
    Number of pages190
    ISBN (Electronic)951-38-5132-x
    ISBN (Print)951-38-5131-1
    Publication statusPublished - 1997
    MoE publication typeD4 Published development or research report or study

    Publication series

    SeriesVTT Tiedotteita - Meddelanden - Research Notes


    • construction management
    • construction process
    • project management
    • process models


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