Avoiding conflicting roles amongst Architects, Interior and MEP designers

For carrying out various design function-related activities, the process of assigning user rights to core design activities, particularly in IT environments, is complex.  If Architects, Interior Designers, and MEP designers are assigned rights injudiciously, there can be conflicting roles as per a few illustrations below. Few Illustrations of conflicting role assignments in Design functions are tabulated below      SNo Design Activity Description       Architect       Assigned Say employee code Interior designer        Assigned Say employee code    MEP designer       Assigned Say employee code 1 Initiate or /create or design development activity at the Concept design development stage                         EA001   EI001   ME001   The same designer approves the Concept design without any peer review or higher-level designer                                  EA001   E1002   ME001 2 Initiate or /create or design development activity at the Schematic design development stage                         EA002   EI002   ME002   The same designer approves the Schematic design developed without any peer review or higher-level designer                                  EA002   E1002   ME002 3 Initiate or /create sanction designs/drawings for submitting to the regulatory body   EA003   Not applicable   ME003   The same designer approves the sanction designs/drawings developed without any peer review or higher-level designer and submitted to the regulatory bodies                                  EA003   Not applicable   ME003 4 Initiate or /create detailed designs/drawings based on statutory approvals   EA003   Not applicable   ME003   The same designer approves the detailed designs /drawings without any peer review or higher-level designer          EA003   Not applicable   ME003 5 Initiate or /create Tenders with technical and commercial terms EA004   EI003   ME004     The same designer approves the Tender without any peer review or higher-level designer          EA004   E1003   ME004 6 Estimating costs of the entire building based on various Bill of quantities EA004   EI003   ME004     The same designer approves the project cost without any peer review or higher-level designer   E004   EI003   ME004 7 Initiate or /create “As build designs/drawings” EA005   EI004   ME005     The same designer approves the As build designs/drawings” without any peer review or higher-level designer          EA005   E1004   ME005 8 Negotiate fees and payment terms with the outsourced “Consultant” for procuring consultancy-related design services  EA004   EI003   ME004   Approve the fee rate of the external consultant without involving the contracts team or finance team   EA004   E1003   ME004 9 Certify & Approve work initiation or completion of outsourced “Consultant” w. r. t.  designs and drawings EA003   EI002   ME003   Authorize payment releases for advance/other payments to outsourced “Consultant.” Against work initiation /completion   EA003   E1002   ME003 10 Create” an agreement with an outsourced “Consultant” towards services EA004   EI003   ME004   Approve/release such agreement directly (without vetting of Scope of design work, terms, and conditions by project-finance or and project-legal team or and Project head)   EA004   E1003   ME004 11 Make changes in the scope of the outsourced Consultant’s Consultancy work and associated deliverables EA004   EI003   ME004   Approve & release” the amended agreement to the outsourced “Consultant”.   EA004   E1003   ME004 12 Make changes in outsourced Consultant fees or reimbursement rates or payment terms EA004   EI003   ME004   Approve such amendments and pass Running account (RA) bills /final bills of outsourced Consultant for payments   EA004   E1003   ME004  Employee code no’s like EA001 & onwards, EI001 & onwards, ME001 & onwards mentioned above are just for simple understanding of readers and would vary based on the size of the construction company, no of projects to be designed, and design organization structure being lean or fat. Many more such conflicting role possibilities can be directly identified by readers in design functions related to Architects, Interior Designers, and MEP.  In some design functions, with a very lean design organisation, the same designers perform design activities for Architects or & Interior Designers or & and MEP designs. Implications Assigning conflicting roles, can trigger colluding of designers with outsourced consultants or contractors, or project team members, and compromising of the cardinal principle of "segregation of duties" leading to:·       Design deficiencies. ·       Adverse impact on project costs or construction quality or not meeting customer requirements or project completion timelines.·       Statutory non-conformances  Suggested approach – Assigning roles based on Segregation of duties The roles assigned to any designer need to be such that these are appropriate to the designer’s position/level, skill, and competence. The roles are to be assigned so that the cardinal principle of segregation of duties is followed to ensure that there are no conflicts of duties or incompatibility in roles. The activities proposed are as below: 1.     Identify Parameters for developing the S-O-D (Segregation of Duty) template for Assigning Access Rights to Core design processes and their activities 2.    Design SOD templates for assigning access rights to core design processes and their activities based on the parameters identified.3.    Software programming of SOD template for assigning access rights for core design processes and their activities4.    Populate the SOD template with “Access rights” related activities for core design processes. This includes reflecting the assigned profiles for capturing assigned profiles vis-à-vis activity for core processes5.    Affecting Changes     As and when changes occur vis-à-vis following for any reason, the design team reviewing and amending populated templates as above.·       Changes in design functions assigned for executing core processes·       Changes in core design processes·       Changes in design activities ·       Change in hierarchy levels in business hierarchy vis-à-vis lower, medium, and higher levels·       Changes in hierarchy positions of designers vis-à-vis low level, medium level, and high levels e.g.o   Lower level:  staff, junior/assistant manager, and so ono   Middle level: manager, senior manager-sr. Mgr. and so ono   Higher level: general managers-GM, directors-Dir and so on  More details and illustrations about the implementation of the Segregation of duties concept are included in chapter 11 (Templates at annex 26C,27C,28C,29C) in my handbook