A case study on the tendering process and cost/time performance of a public building project in Ghana is conducted. Competitive bids submitted by five contractors for the project, in which contractors were required to prepare their own quantities, were analyzed to compare differences in their pricing levels and risk/requirement perceptions. Queries sent to the consultants at the tender stage were also analyzed to identify the significant areas of concern to contractors in relation to the tender documentation. The five bidding prices were significantly different. The queries submitted for clarifications were significantly different, although a few were similar. Using a before-and-after experiment, the expected cost/time estimate at the start of the project was compared to the actual cost/time values, i.e. what happened in the actual construction phase. The analysis showed that the project exceeded its expected cost by 18% and its planned time by 210%. Variations and inadequate design were the major reasons. Following an exploration of these issues, an alternative tendering mechanism is recommended to clients. A shift away from the conventional approach of awarding work based on price, and serious consideration of alternative procurement routes can help clients in Ghana obtain better value for money on their projects
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