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Jeremy Shelton
New member
Username: jashelton98

Post Number: 1
Registered: 10-2015
Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 10:27 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Recently I have come across many folks in our firm checking more than one box on the submittal stamp. For example on a recent submittal that was incomplete the reviewer marked "Approved as Noted" and "Submit Specified Item." When questioned about this the review stated she wanted to let the Contractor that a portion of the submittal was approved but that they were missing some items which needed to be submitted. I would have marked the submittal "Revise and Resubmit" and then explained that the submittal was incomplete and list the missing items.

Any thoughts on this practice of checking more than one box on the stamp? Is there added liability or greater chance for confusion?
Nathan Woods, CSI, CCCA, LEED AP
Senior Member
Username: nwoods

Post Number: 707
Registered: 08-2005

Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 10:53 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

I occasionally do this. Sometimes I get shop drawings, calcs,and product data, all in one submittal package. Great when it's all approvable, not so great when just one portion isn't. So I'll tick the boxes for Approved and R & R, and note the portion that needs to be resubmitted.

Other times a submittal might become obsolete before we had a chance to review it (due to Owner change, or similar factors). In those circumstances I'll tick the boxes for "Not Reviewed" and "R&R" stating why.

I think the key is the annotation accompanying the submittal status designation. Sounds like in your case the annotation was missing.
Dave Metzger
Senior Member
Username: davemetzger

Post Number: 686
Registered: 07-2001
Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 10:56 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Yes, the point is, as we all know, that clear communication is the key. Don't assume that the contractor can read the reviewer's mind.
Edwin J. Essary, CSI, CDT
New member
Username: eessary

Post Number: 1
Registered: 09-2016
Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 11:38 am:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Two thoughts; contractors, and their ethics, run the gamut, and submittals are NOT contract documents. As important as the stamp is the nature and degree of concern behind it. If the contractor is clearly ignoring or misunderstanding your specification, an equally clear rejection is appropriate. In my experience, including as a contractor, anything other than rejection gives the GO AHEAD signal and, if they're off-tract, your only leverage is to suspend progress with a rejection - followed immediately by communication about the issues.
John Hunter
Senior Member
Username: johnhunter

Post Number: 146
Registered: 12-2005
Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 12:07 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Make sure people reviewing the submittals have read your 01 3300 "Submittal Procedures" Section. Our Section clearly says action and informational submittals are to be submitted separately and that we don't review incomplete submittals among other things. I explain to our team why that language is there and that submittals that don't comply with the Contract requirements are to be returned without review. Usually after a submittal or two they start to come in properly.

My point to our teams is that the ENTIRE specifcation is important, and it sends an unfortunate message that if these requirements aren't important enough to enforce, then maybe other requirements aren't as well. Also, if the Contractor doesn't read and comply with these farily simple requirements, what else aren't they reading?
Guest (Unregistered Guest)
Unregistered guest
Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 01:34 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Why not simply instruct teams to stamp each submittal rather than the package? The language in our office masters, taken directly from MasterSpec, indicates that the Architect will review and stamp each submittal with an action stamp, not that they will review and stamp each submittal package.
Brett Scarfino (Unregistered Guest)
Unregistered guest
Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 02:12 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Bundled packages are a pet peeve, and have gotten worse with the information age. If I have any say in the matter, I suggest to contractors that bundled packages have:
1) document page numbers.
2) a submittal cover sheet that clearly itemizes all submitted information and applicable pages ("product data" is generally too generic as some think MSDS and sample warranties are product data).
3) only informational type submittals.
4) cover only one particular specification section.

I've found the GC's generally get it when someone takes a few minutes to explain how it streamlines processing time and limits downstream confusion/potential resubmittals; as I see it, it is their subs homework not theirs.
Ellis C. Whitby, PE, CSI, AIA, LEED
Senior Member
Username: ecwhitby

Post Number: 296
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 03:28 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Regarding multiple review marks, presuming that the reason and scope are clearly identified in the returned submittal I usually prefer them. For example, if I get a submittal with shop drawings, color samples, and product data, a typical review could be “B – Approved as Noted” for the shops, “C – Revise and Resubmit” for the samples and “A – Approved” for the product data. I would not want to receive the entire package again. If this was submitted as separate submittals we incur more man-hours logging the submittal. Additionally, most reviewers I have worked with like seeing everything related in one package.

We are seeing some contractors who want a complete resubmittal because “it’s clearer in the field.” They claim the Subcontractors get confused with multiple submittals. Frankly, that is not my job to package the contractors work for their subcontractors. We have only so many man-hors allocated for construction phase services, and the hours are all too often being cut.
Nathan Woods, CSI, CCCA, LEED AP
Senior Member
Username: nwoods

Post Number: 708
Registered: 08-2005

Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 05:31 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

To Edwin and John, you must work on a lot of adversarial projects. As a full time professional Construction Adminstrator, I make a living by working with contractors as partners. Our goal to keep the work moving, and not be obstructionist. Rejecting a less than perfect submittal is definitely not the way to have a successful project in my opinion.

Brett's comment about bundles is a double edged sword. Ultimately, it comes down to efficiency and fee, as Ellis so correctly described. If a project has around 300 submittals, why on earth would I want it broken down into components. Now I am processing 800+ submittals, and burning admin time that is uncompensated.
Steven Bruneel, AIA, CSI-CDT, LEED-AP, EDAC
Senior Member
Username: redseca2

Post Number: 587
Registered: 12-2006

Posted on Tuesday, May 09, 2017 - 05:47 pm:   Edit PostDelete PostPrint Post

Providing mixed responses can cause problems up and down the review stream unless very clear, concise and correct direction is provided. Doubly so if there is more than one reviewer and there isn't perfect overlap in the review actions.

But I believe it can be acceptable and of benefit to the project schedule in some circumstances. The best use is when the submittal includes a very large number of similar things and the submittal gets most of them right. Examples would include steel shop drawings or a door hardware submittal for a large project. Steel may need to move based on dimensions learned from an equipment shop drawing, and there may be only one or two hardware groups that needs reconsideration. No reason to hold steel procurement and fabrication for a highrise or the door hardware procurement for a 2500 door project. Sending back submittal like these with many approved sheets and some requesting re-submittal on our projects is very common.

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