Costing and Pricing A Guide for Water Well Drilling Enterprises

This field note is written for water well drilling enterprises as well as other agencies which manage, or are involved in drilling projects. Using a step-by-step approach it gives clear guidance on how to cost and price the construction of drilled water wells. It also provides tips on business management with an emphasis of the realities faced in many countries in sub-Saharan Africa. Once you are familiar with this field note, you will be in a much stronger position to calculate drilling costs, consider prices and deal with business realities.

There are five distinct steps to costing and pricing: (1) the basic costs of running your business; (2) analysis of tender docu- ments; (3) setting out the cost components; (4) calculating your costs and (5) determining your price. Within each step a number of key issues need to be considered. Costs are broken down into siting, mobilisation, drilling, casing/completion, well devel- opment/pumping test and pump installation. Practical, worked examples enable the reader to easily follow the costing method. The field note sets out bills of quantities and considers how to deal with risks and uncertainties as well as the tender process. Key advice for effective management is also given.

The authors of this field note sincerely hope that it helps drilling enterprises to develop and flourish, and thus contributes to improving water supplies, particularly in the developing world.

Note that this is an update of the 2010 publication of the same name, with minor corrections.

This training manual is also available in French and Portuguese.

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Code of Practice for Cost Effective Boreholes

Sustainable groundwater development is fundamental in order to provide universal access to safe drinking water. This docu- ment, The Code of Practice for Cost Effective Boreholes provides a basis for the realisation of economical and sustainable access to safe water. The term “cost-effective” means optimum value for money invested over the long term. Boreholes are drilled to function for a lifespan of 20 to 50 years. Thus, the lowest cost is not always the most cost-effective, particularly if construction quality is compromised to save money. Cheap drilling or poor construction quality can lead to premature failure of the well or contamination of the water supply. Boreholes that are subse- quently abandoned by the users are clearly not cost-effective.

The Code of Practice sets out nine principles that relate directly to the practicalities of borehole construction (see below). They should be adhered to in order to provide cost-effective bore- holes. Each principle is broken down into sub-principles which recommend procedures to be followed and call for the defini- tion of and adherence to minimum standards.

The Code of Practice thus provides a framework to analyse the strengths and weaknesses of existing policies and practices. It is intended to be used as the foundation for the development of national protocols for cost-effective borehole provision. It pro- vides a basis for stakeholders to examine whether they are working in accordance with international practices, and it can be used by donors to examine funding conditionalities.

This training manual is also available in French.

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