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Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Partnering: The way ADOT does business

State Route 87, above, extends through Tonto National Forest.
Learn about ADOT's partnership with the forest later this week.
If you've ever worked on any sort of team you know it takes a lot of trust, communication and cooperation from everyone to achieve what the group is working toward.

You’re probably also aware of what happens when that cooperation isn't there ... it can be a bad experience for everyone!

Now, imagine the large-scale projects that ADOT works on with other agencies, municipalities and organizations. There are so many stakeholders that you would think getting everyone to agree on anything would be near impossible -- but it’s not.

ADOT uses an effective technique to work with other groups, agencies, organizations and even internally. It’s called partnering and was first used by the agency in 1991.

Basically, partnering is a formal way for groups to work together and resolve issues. Partnering documents aren't legally binding contracts, but rather agreements among all the parties involved. They spell out what’s expected of everyone and (most importantly) dictate how to solve problems if they arise.

There are a few different types of partnerships at ADOT. Project partnerships are formed among ADOT, contractors and any project stakeholders at the start of a project. Internal partnerships are similar and are formed among different departments within ADOT.

Public Partnerships are formed between ADOT and other state, local and federal agencies and non-governmental stakeholders. These public partnerships allow ADOT and other agencies to build great relationships before, during and after they might work on a project together.

Before ADOT used partnering, arguments, claims and litigation were part of the norm because expectations weren't clearly spelled out in advance. Projects were often late and over budget.

Since ADOT began using partnering in 1991, projects are delivered on time and within budget. Claims were reduced from about 60 per year to less than one per year and since 2003, there have been NO claims.

Check back later this week for an up-close look at ADOT's partnership with the Tonto National Forest, and f or more on how ADOT uses partnering, click here.
Posted by Angela DeWelles   |  Labels:  ADOT, Partnering, Partnerships
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