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Principles of Measurement

For Works of Construction
JUNE 1979

Published by RICS Business Services Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, under the RICS Books imprint, Surveyor Court Westwood Business Park Coventry, CV4 8JE UK No responsibility for loss occasioned to any person acting or refraining from action as a result of any material included in this publication can be accepted by the authors, publisher or The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. The views expressed and the conclusions drawn in this book are those of the authors. ISBN 0 85406 108 8 First Edition 1979 Reprinted 1988, 1991, 1994, 2001, 2002 and 2004 © RICS 1988. Copyright in all or part of this publication rests with the RICS, and save by prior consent of the RICS, no part or parts of this publication shall be reproduced in any form or by any means electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, now known or to be devised. Printed by Q3 Print, Loughborough

Foreword The use of bills of quantities is a well-established means of enabling the financial control and management of building works. The key to the success of the use of bills of quantities is a clear understanding by all parties to the contract of what is included, or excluded, in the measurement. It is this that gives rise to the requirement for clearly defined standard methods of measurement. Since these principles of measurement were first issued in 1979, many countries have developed their own more detailed standard methods. A recent survey of its international membership carried out for the RICS Construction Faculty by the Building Cost Information Service (BCIS) identified that 14 of the 32 responding countries had their own method of measurement. However, the Principles of Measurement (International) (POMI) were still being used in about half of the countries and are still widely used on international contracts.

There has been a trend in the UK and elsewhere to move away from measurement-based procurement, passing the responsibility for measuring the building work down the supply chain to the contractor or sub-contractor. However, research commissioned by the Construction Faculty showed that where bills of quantities were not provided as part of the procurement process, 95% of contractors would undertake their own measurement, with the majority of this carried out in accordance with the current Standard Method of Measurement (SMM). There is no doubt that the proliferation of procurement practices will continue. However, in circumstances in which there is a degree of design certainty before the contractor is appointed, measurement-based procurement will still be appropriate. Furthermore, where design decisions are being passed down the supply chain, measurement should be undertaken at the level at which the design is carried out, in order to remove the need for duplication. It is in the interests of the industry as a whole, including its clients, that measurement is carried out consistently. There is therefore a continued need for standard methods of measurement and, by implication, a continued need for measurement skills. These principles require a detailed specification and tender drawings to be provided. RICS recognises that circumstances vary from country to country, and from contract to contract, and that the principles therefore need to be flexible in order to accommodate variations in practice and techniques. Any comments on the principles should be sent to the RICS Construction Faculty, at 12 Great George Street, Parliament Square, London, SW1P 3AD. The principles are also available in French, German and Arabic. RICS is grateful to the original authors: Michael Rainbird, Alan Charter, James Diebel, Derek Lawrence and Michael Pagulatos. Simon Cash Chairman RICS Construction Faculty December 2003

SECTION GP - GENERAL PRINCIPLES GP1 Principles of measurement . . . . . . . . . . . ....
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