Shortening lead-time from project initiation to delivery

Andreas Økland (Fakultet for ingeniorvitenskap og teknologi Trondheim, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway)
Agnar Johansen (SINTEF Teknologi og samfunn, Trondheim, Norway)
Nils O.E. Olsson (Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway)

International Journal of Managing Projects in Business

ISSN: 1753-8378

Publication date: 2 July 2018



Standardizing the development, planning and construction of public building projects can contribute to timely and efficient project delivery. This is especially relevant when there are urgent needs for capacity. The purpose of this paper is to share the experiences from the development of standardized concepts for school extensions and prison building in Norway.


The research questions posed in this paper are on the interaction between public entities project delivery models and standardizing building types and the construction method. To investigate the research questions, the paper presents the findings from two case studies: school and prison development and construction projects. It is based on a literature review, semi-structured interviews, document studies and quantitative data on time and cost for the planning and construction phases.


Standardization and use of modularized building systems can contribute to shortened delivery time by reducing the duration of both the planning and construction phase. The most significant time reduction resulted from less time spent on quality assurance of cost estimates prior to the funding of the projects. Project costs increased in the school case, but were reduced in the prison case. An important challenge faced in both cases is a shallow pool of capable suppliers; the actors have approached the challenge with different strategies, yet neither actor has been successful in their attempts.


The paper provides empirical data to add to the collective knowledge on the project management aspects of using standardized project delivery models and standardized (modular) building. However, by emphasizing the interaction between project delivery models and standardization of the planning and execution of the projects, additional insight into the benefits and challenges are highlighted.



Økland, A., Johansen, A. and Olsson, N. (2018), "Shortening lead-time from project initiation to delivery", International Journal of Managing Projects in Business, Vol. 11 No. 3, pp. 625-649.

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