Transition to a Competitive Consultant Selection Method: A Case Study of a Public Agency in Israel

Amichai Mitelman, Yahel Giat
Interdisciplinary Journal of Information, Knowledge, and Management  •  Volume 16  •  2021  •  pp. 491-503

This paper reports a case study of organizational transition from a non-competitive selection method to a novel bidding method for the selection of consultants in the Architectural and Engineering (A/E) industry.

Public procurement agencies are increasingly relying on external consultants for the design of construction projects. Consultant selection can be based on either competitive bidding, or quality-based criteria, or some combination between these two approaches.

Different sources of information were reviewed: internal documents, and quantitative data from the enterprise software platform (ERP). In addition, informal and unstructured interviews were conducted with relevant officials.

As there are mixed opinions in the scientific literature regarding the use of competitive bidding for the selection of consultants in the A/E industry, this paper contributes a detailed review of a transition to a competitive selection method and provides a financial and qualitative comparison between the two methods. In addition, the method implemented is novel, as it delegates most of the responsibility of hiring and managing consultants to one main contractor.

While the new selection method was intended to reduce bureaucratic overload, it has unexpectedly also succeeded to reduce costs as well.

It may be more efficient and profitable to adopt the selection method described in this study.

Similar methods can be applied to other industries successfully.

Our method was applied in a public organization and resulted in a better outcome, both financial and managerial. Adopting this approach can benefit public budgets.

The selection, data storage, and analysis methods are interrelated components. Future analysis of these components can help better shape the consultant selection process.

A/E services, consultant selection, public procurement, design management, team building
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