Construction Specifications: How do Spec Writers Decide What Products to Specify?

Construction specifications are generally produced by architects or engineers, for governmental or NGO construction projects which are to be let out for competitive bids.

Our experience shows us many of these project specifiers write in requirements for products which are either commercially not readily available, or are not practical for the intended use of the building.

Issues often occur between the building owner and the project architect or engineer. Owners are concerned with getting results – they want a finished building which will solve their problems and help them reach their goals, combined with getting the most value for the dollar spent.

The project architect or engineer, is all too often in a “cover their posterior” position, so they over specify products, without consideration to the real needs of the client, or the impact of their choices upon budget.

In a recent example – we were awarded the bid to provide materials for a post frame building at a sewage treatment plant. Among the construction specifications were 26 gauge perforated steel liner panels. The steel liner was desired by the building owner, so they could wash down the interior. The project engineer was concerned about sound, so used perforated panels to reduce sound transmission. Also specified was 7/16” oriented strand board (osb) directly behind the liner panels. No consideration was given to the damage which will be caused to the osb, by water being sprayed through the perforations in the liner! To add insult to injury – the 26 gauge product is not stocked by any steel roll former (29 gauge product is), so it had to be specially ordered.

As a service to specifying architects, engineers and building owners, Hansen Buildings will provide structural bid documents and specifications for post frame buildings – at no charge. For us, it is all about the building, and our desire to see to it practical cost effective pole buildings are constructed.  Let’s keep the project realistic, and within budget.

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2 thoughts on “Construction Specifications: How do Spec Writers Decide What Products to Specify?

  1. I am a designer looking for a pole barn specification! it’s for a sheep barn that we’re doing. How can I get a copy of the specifications you provide. This is just what I was looking for! Thank you!


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