NEC4 ECC: Should the PM continually revise and issue the Scope document

We are a Contractor on a project where the Project Manager has got into the habit of issuing the Contractor with revisions of the Scope document under PMI’s. The wording of the PMI’s generally tell the Contractor to refer to the attached revised Scope and also gives a brief description of what the change is.

We don’t believe that it is prudent of the PM to issue instructions in this way by issuing revisions of the Scope in addition to the PMI itself because we feel this has the potential to cause ambiguity and also becomes very difficult for the Contractor to manage.

We have never experienced such an undertaking by a PM before. The PM is relying on clause 14.3 by saying that he should change the Scope.

Is this contractually correct? And do you consider that this is best practice?

The only specific contract requirement for an instruction under clause 14.3 is that it complies with clause 13.1 in terms of what a communication should look like.

If the Scope is structured in accordance with the NEC ‘Works Information Guidance’ document published in January 2012, then it would be a matter of amending the wording of the appropriate section document (or documents).

Although the NEC does not specifically state how the change is to be presented, it is important to implement some form of change management to ensure that everyone is working to the latest version of a document. The same principle as working to the latest revised drawing.

The requirements within the Scope are used in other documents, including the Contractor’s quality management system. If you are certified under ISO 9001:2015 then any changes to the Scope should be administered under a ‘controlled’ process to ensure compliance and avoid Non-conformities, for instance with your Quality Plan processes and procedures.

Assuming the matter is also a compensation event, then clear definition of the CE scope is important to facilitate the preparation of quotations.

In really simple terms - No they do not need to do this. The Scope is the original documents referred to in contract data, AND any instructions given in accordance with the contract. They can just issue the new instructions on their own - they do NOT need to reissue a master document called Scope every time.