A Place to Call Home

Abstract:This article explores Veridian Homes' use of quality management tools, techniques, and practices, along with its innovative culture, to meet the challenges of building a large house in 106 hours in connection with ABC’s “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition” television program. The project would require out-of-the-box thinking and exceptional project management. The confidence to take on this job stemmed from a willingness to do something good for the community and Veridian’s history of using quality management for internal processes. When the “Extreme Makeover” opportunity arose, the organization and its trade contractors were versed in using a range of quality management tools and techniques that were integrated for maximum efficiency. This included Baldrige self-assessments; an integrated management system based on ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and OHSAS 18001; cross-functional improvement teams; and a process for corporate strategic planning and deployment that integrated the Baldrige criteria …

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I found this article interesting.
--C. Davis, 04-29-2014

In addition to my Quality and Business qualifications I have a degree in Construction Engineering and am experienced in the industry. This project was planned, designed and constructed in an ordered process. In construction the schedule can be compressed by using pre-fabrication, mechanization, accelerants in materials such as concrete, increasing labor (and in the case of this project working 24 hours) and other factors, none of which reduce the quality of construction. This was the case with this project, however, the point of the article was to show how other factors specifically quality management tools and techniques were used to assure that the problems you outlined did not occur.
Drying and curing times, soil testing, moisture levels, the completion of structural connections, the correct order of material and product placement etc are the keys to the steps and timing of a construction process. All of which were complied with for this project. It was also approved by third parties such as Building Code inspectors, Energy Star, WI Green Built as well as having approved Engineering drawings and an Architect on staff.
The home had the exact same structural and non-structural elements covered in warranty as any other home Veridian builds. There were only a few minor cosmetic issues with the home during or after the warranty periods.
This home was built using the same processes used in the hundreds of other homes Veridian has built. That is 100% of the homes are Energy Star and WI Green Built approved with customer satisfaction 97%, trade satisfaction 95% and employee satisfaction 94%.

--Denis Leonard & Gary Zajicek, 04-28-2014

"Settling In" As long as testing validation was performed before the next step/trade was performed, ie testing & passing of soil compaction underneath footings, testing & passing of moisture content of framing material; "tightening up" framing allowances a little, etc & other items would all help a house avoid some of the "settle in" issues.
--Steve Suver, 04-28-2014

I can see how it would be fun to plan all this, but my gut feeling here is that there are reasons builders ordinarily take months to build a home--it allows each step to be allowed to "settle" a bit before the next step is completed. I'm reminded of my dad's joke "The architect for the Tower of Pisa really saved time and money by skipping soil samples."

I hope the house turns out great over the long term, but call me really, really uneasy about this one. Hastily built houses are too often like hastily made wines.
--Bert Perry, 04-11-2014

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