Applying system dynamics for outsourcing services in design-build projects

Stephen Lisse


This study analysed a system dynamics model for outsourcing engineering services in a large and complex project organisational structure that is typically associated with design-build (DB) project delivery. A literature review indicated that most of the reviewed papers implied the project engineering resources were totally insourced or the authors were silent regarding any resources that were outsourced. Comprehensive sensitivity analysis of various model variables was performed, which indicates that the quality and productivity of the outsourced resources as well as the initial number of assigned experienced engineers significantly impacted the amount and timing of engineering work completion. Project outcomes were also impacted by varying the number of initial and changed engineering tasks. The decision to insource/outsource engineering work on DB projects may have significant cost and time impacts, which should be considered by decision makers.


System dynamics, outsourcing, project management, quality, productivity, engineering, design-build

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