Decision Criteria and Their Subjectivity in Construction Procurement Selection

Thomas Ng, Duc Luu, Swee Chen


Employing a suitable construction procurement system is crucial to project success. However,many clients select procurement systems in a cursory manner and some clientseven use a specific procurement system by default without deliberate choice. A systematicmethod for procurement selection would help clients to arrive at more informed decisions.The first step towards a systematic procurement selection method is to identify decisioncriteria pertinent to assessing the alternatives. This paper identifies the commonly consideredcriteria for procurement selection through a qualitative survey in Australia. The subjectivityof the identified criteria is considered and the effects on procurement selectionare examined. The results indicate that speed, complexity, flexibility, responsibility, qualitylevel, risk allocation, and price competition cannot be easily gauged by objective means,and a misperception of the degree of fulfilment of any of these criteria could affect theoutcome of procurement selection.

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