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Construction Design Management

Description of Works 

FM Conway’s Consultancy division offers a range of services including Construction Design Management (CDM), which was implemented following the regulations brought into force in 2015 to effectively manage the health, safety and welfare of construction projects.

CDM applies to all building and construction work and includes new build, demolition, refurbishment, extensions, conversions, repair and maintenance.

Services used on this project Consultancy
What we do

Our design and build services work together to manage, coordinate and direct our design and construction teams throughout the lifecycle of the project, and have developed our own in-house CDM process to ensure that the high standard is met. 
Within our design consultancy, our team of CDM Advisors have the skills, knowledge and experience to identify and record risks and undertake the role of Principal Designer on large complex projects. 

Principal Designer Services Include: 

  • Assisting in the development of the initial brief
  • Planning, managing and monitoring the pre-construction phase
  • Assist the client in obtaining the pre-construction information
  • Provide pre-construction information to designers, principal contractor and contractors
  • Attending design review meetings
  • Prepare the health and safety file for handover after project completion 
  • Raise F10  notifications
  • Identify, eliminate or control foreseeable risks

Designers at FM Conway are required to develop a Design Risk Assessment for their work which takes into consideration the principles of prevention for each hazard they can foresee. Design risks are managed from concept design through to implementation. 

A Design Risk Register template is then used for the recording and management of these design risks to clearly detail the high-level risks, as well as to provide facility to specify residual risks once the design has been completed.

The Design team have been trained to initially attempt to eliminate any hazard identified and record decisions in optioneering reports within the earlier stages of design. Our design team frequently design out key hazards through the material selection procured, the plant options that are chosen for key activities, and the timing of key activities. 

In all cases, we engage and collaborate with client management to minimise possible operational impact. Design risks are typically actioned via the design team and coordinated by the Principal Designer via tracking of deadlines recorded in the Design Risk Register and via discussion at Design Review meetings. 

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To ensure that the project was completed to the specified timeframe for the client, careful liaison and strict deadlines were adhered to by the FM Conway Consultancy team.

How we manage CDM

Our CDM Advisors hold regular workshop sessions for the whole team to disseminate safety information to ensure that our teams are experts in how to apply the principles of hazard prevention on each project

All designers receive CDM Awareness training every two years and attend workshops focusing on design risk management using examples of our successful projects. Plus, each designer receives six monthly refresher training in the general principles of prevention.

Our Experience

Our Designers have on average 10 years’ experience identifying and assessing significant and unusual hazards. They are also highly experienced in working in most environments, including highly secure areas and the risks associated with operationally active environments.

Managing Training

Our Consultancy team maintains a skills matrix to ensure that refresher training takes place regularly to ensure that those undertaking the role of Principal Designer are in receipt of the latest training. Our CDM Advisors are trained Civil Engineers that hold NEBOSH Construction Certificates and IMaPS status.


FM Conway can provide an in-house design and build service which provides both the benefit of close coordination between the design and construction teams throughout the lifecycle of the project, but also enables an effective delivery of both the Principal Designer (PD) and Principal Contractor (PC) role especially with regards to communication of residual risks and pre-construction information.

Based on the quantity of projects that were due to be delivered on an annual basis, we recommended the Client utilise a software system entitled CDM Toolkit CS. This system provided many benefits including:

  • Auditable trail of all actions
  • CDM Statistics tracking any outstanding requirements against the Client’s timescales
  • Storage facility for project documentation and Health and Safety Files

For each project that was provided to FM Conway to undertake the role of Principal Designer, the allocated representative would be responsible for the delivery of the role as per the CDM Compliance Procedure. 

The use of CDM Toolkit CS not only provides the Client assurance that we have completed all legal requirements as per the CDM Regulations, but also provides us an effective monitoring tool to ensure we maintain a high standard when delivering a large quantity of work.