What Do I Need to Know About Using Contract Management?

Using the Project Center contract management (CM) activity centers provides you the tools to track and manage contract management items throughout the construction phase of a project, whether your role is of a lead design consultant, contractor, design subconsultant, or specialty subcontractor. This topic describes how to track CM items in Project Center and offers tips for using some of the CM activity centers.

Tracking items

You can customize each activity center to display as many or as few columns as needed for tracking CM items. Each view selected in the category drop-down list can have its own set of columns defined, including column order and sort order. For sort order, you can sort by three columns - primary, secondary, and tertiary, and the arrows in the column headers are sized proportionally (the primary sort column is the largest arrow). You can also save the column definition for each column to easily revert to the column set at any time (you can use this for generating weekly reports, for example).

In addition to the standard columns that identify each CM Item (such as ID and Subject) and the fields for each CM item, there are columns that represent the workflow status that are helpful for tracking the current status of the item:


        Last Action

        Forwarded to

        Last Forwarded

        Due Back From

        Current Reviewer

        Total Days

The combination of these fields and the category drop-down list provide you the tools that you need to effectively manage all CM items in Project Center. For a definition of these fields and the options in the category drop down, see the help topic for the specific activity center.

Expected items

When you create a CM item in Project Center, most activity centers allow you to create the item with an Expected status. Creating an expected item allows you to record that you expect another project team member to send you something in the future. By tracking expected items, you can make sure that important communications aren't forgotten. When you finally receive the item through email or Info Exchange, you can log the email or transfer as the expected item. For example, if you originated a proposal request for a project, you can log an expected change order proposal in the Change Order Proposals activity center. When you receive the COP, you can log the email as the expected COP.

You can also create expected items for items for which you have selected an action of Revise and Resubmit or Rejected in the corresponding Respond to Contract Management Item and Close dialog box.

Selecting a contract

Each CM item contains a Contract field. By associating a CM item with a contract, you have access to data in two reports that are available from the Contracts activity center:

        Contract Summary Report – lists all CM items that were associated with the contract.

        Change Order Summary Report – lists all change orders that were generated for the project and calculates the contact sum and contract time based on the original contract with all change orders associated with the contract.

Relating CM items

As in all activity centers, you have the ability to relate items together when creating (or modifying) a CM item. This allows you to follow the changes in a project from the change order all the way back to an RFI.

By entering sketches or supplemental instructions in the associated activity center, you not only have an electronic sketch log for the project, you also have the ability to relate the sketch to a CM item using the Related Items tab. When forwarding or sending CM items, you can then select the sketch and send it to the specified recipient. If the CM item you are sending is associated with a record document, select the related record document. It is then associated with the CM item in the Document Control activity center.


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