Frederick Bremer School

Waltham Forest

DQI process

Waltham Forest Borough Council used the Design Quality Indicator (DQI) assessment at two stages – during the briefing stage and to evaluate proposed designs.

Involving the stakeholders

Both sessions took place with a representative cross section of stakeholders:

  • head teacher
  • administrator
  • governor
  • head of English
  • SEN coordinator
  • ICT manager
  • bursar
  • head of technology
  • school support manager
  • CABE enabler
  • technical project manager
  • pupils.

It was important that stakeholders felt at ease and that their opinion was valued, so the DQI facilitator was available to answer any questions at both sessions.

Holding the briefing workshop

The DQI facilitator began with an exercise to get people thinking about space and their needs by drawing on good and bad examples of design from their own experiences. This eased the way into a conversation about their requirements for the new school.

This workshop was completed offline to ensure that the stakeholders’ attention was engaged in the conversation rather than directed at a computer screen. The results fed into the brief for Frederick Bremer which was given to the bidders.

“To ensure value DQI must be invested in whole heartedly in terms of time, stakeholder representation and facilitation, as well as simple things, which are often overlooked, such as sufficient breaks for tea and coffee during the session”
CABE enabler

Evaluating the proposed designs

The second workshop was held over a full day and stakeholders were reminded about what they had said at the briefing workshops.

Bidders had been informed through the brief about stakeholder needs, requirements and aspirations. Each design team presented their schemes to stakeholders, who evaluated their designs using the mid-design assessment tool.

The results of the workshop informed the selection of the preferred bidder.