search.noResults

search.searching

note.createNoteMessage

search.noResults

search.searching

orderForm.title

orderForm.productCode
orderForm.description
orderForm.quantity
orderForm.itemPrice
orderForm.price
orderForm.totalPrice
orderForm.deliveryDetails.billingAddress
orderForm.deliveryDetails.deliveryAddress
orderForm.noItems
The first step is to clearly define the project’s needs and scope of services. If the client does not have the expertise and understanding to fulfill the obligations of the irrigation portion of the project, the services of a consultant are necessary.


A client should consider the project type, size and complexity, and seek a consultant with a history of providing similar work, while meeting both the project timetable and budget. During the interview, there should be enough rapport that the client feels confident about working closely with the consultant over the coming months. The client should also inquire about the consultant’s insurance and staffing resources. Checking references and asking for referrals is always important.


A consultant is likely also evaluating the client to ascertain whether there is a sense of mutual respect and open communication. A wise consultant may also seek a solid reference from fellow professionals who have previously worked with the client. A strong and trusting relationship between the client and consultant cannot be underestimated.


Integrating the Consultant Into the Project


Once a consultant is hired, deciding when to bring a consultant into the project is an important factor. In a nutshell — as early as possible. Even if there seems to be little required activity for the consultant, early intervention can make a big difference in the success of the project. The consultant may want to start communication with the regulating authorities and project engineers to determine water source options, requirements and location. Realistic preliminary budgets can be established early in the planning phase; this is too often left to guesswork leading to some ugly surprises later. A consultant is also instrumental in providing required documentation to obtain permits or zoning approvals. Becoming an integral member of the team early on helps in building future relationship trust.


It is necessary to discuss and mutually understand the project requirements. This includes project use, size and any site constraints or unique issues. There should be a frank discussion regarding level of quality expected — both in the product as


well as services provided by the consultant. A preliminary project schedule and budget should be presented and agreed upon. The consultant should have a list of all key team players, including other outside consulting firms.


It is important to define the scope of services needs. Depending on the in-house expertise of the client, the scope of services needs to be customized for each project. A clear understanding of each service and who will be responsible is a critical step to ensure the project moves forward without unnecessary misunderstanding. Additional services may be required once the project is under way, and services may be added to an agreement at any time. Too often in our industry, providing technically correct plans and specifications is thought to equate to providing the services of a professional consultant. But the role is really so much more complex.


Once the project scope of services has been defined, the irrigation consultant prepares a compensation proposal. Compensation may be lump sum, percent of construction cost, hourly fee or a combination of all three. Finally, a written agreement can be forged based on the agreed-upon project scope, services, responsibilities, project schedule and budgets. By following these practices, the client and professional consultant can work together to finish a landscape project that both meets the expectations of the client while focusing on responsible and efficient irrigation practices.


ASIC professionals represent the top experts in this small but important and growing industry. Through networking with fellow professionals, both national and international, members stay on top of


emerging trends and innovations. They are thought leaders who provide direction and insight to the future of the industry. Their commitment to the ASIC code of ethics assures their dedication to a high standard of professional practice and care. Visitwww.asic. org to learn how you can become part of this growing and dynamic organization.


Common Services That Can Be Provided by an Irrigation Consultant


Evaluation and Planning


• Discipline coordination as it relates to irrigation (electrical, mechanical, civil, hardscape/softscape, etc.)


• Agency consulting for required permit documentation


• Preliminary budget analysis/ preliminary cost estimates


• Water sourcing options/economic feasibility studies


• Zoning/permitting process assistance


• Planning meeting(s) participation and/or attendance


Design Services


• Design/documentation (conceptual through bidding) • Specifications • Budget estimate update including cost-benefit analysis


Bidding or Negotiating


• Bidding materials/documentation • Respond to bidder’s inquiries • Addenda as needed • Bidding/negotiating with contractor • Analysis of alternates/substitutions • Bid evaluation and recommendation


Contract Administration Services


• On-site visits during construction • Inspection administration (observa- tion and reports) • Change orders • Contract cost accounting • Interpretations and decisions • Project close-out


Facility Administration Services


• Maintenance protocol • System programming • Record drawings • Warranty review/disputes


Carol Colein is executive director of the


American Society of Irrigation Consultants. Prior to her current role, Carol worked as a


professional irrigation consultant for over 28 years. irrigationtoday.org 23


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44