Increasing assurance on project costs



A high-profile organiser of major multisports events commissioned RLB to collate and benchmark cost of construction data for its different events to improve planning of future projects. We applied our cost management and digital development expertise to develop a cost benchmarking system that would improve assurance of projected cost outcomes.

Our bespoke system has provided our client with a level of perspective that is unparalleled within the sports event sector in terms of the ability to benchmark the construction costs of past and present events. The insights revealed by our database have been used to support negotiation, reporting and bidding processes, leading to better, more informed planning decisions and a significant increase in cost certainty.

At a glance

  • Client
  • Services
    Commercial Success, Cost Benchmarking and Cost Intelligence
  • sector
  • Location

Database contains 20 years of information

We developed a database which holds venue overlay cost information on previous editions of our client’s sports events over the last 20 years. Our cost management consultants worked closely with colleagues in RLB Digital to create a detailed brief for the benchmarking system, focusing on the user interface and outturn reports as well as data cleansing and regularisation. The substantial amount of raw data provided by our client was solid but required us to align cost headings and reporting formats used for diverse venues across a lengthy time period.

“RLB is a trusted consultant and has an extensive track record of providing us with expert cost management support. It has consistently delivered advice and insights that have made a real impact on our organisation’s ability to plan projects with greater cost certainty.”
Confidential sport sector client

Our experts understood the composition of such venues and were able to interpret and question the data rather than simply cleanse and align it. This ensured that the data sets uploaded to the database were reliable and, most importantly, comparable for benchmarking purposes.

Global network, local knowledge

Our construction economists provided relativity indices for cost and location to support the cost benchmarking function of the database. Knowledge of local markets provided by our global office network was critical in informing this. All cost information was uploaded to the database, alongside key metrics such as number of athletes, competition days, stadium capacities and venue photography. The logic and outputs of the database were extensively tested before handover to our client.

Groundbreaking benchmarking tool

RLB has delivered a first-of-its-kind benchmarking tool that supports rights holders in comparing sports events on a like-for-like basis across the globe, accounting for local delivery and the year of delivery. It provides the ability to compare venues across various metrics including the number of athletes and spectators, ticketing revenue and sports programme. The database, which is hosted on our RLB Focus dashboard reporting platform, will be maintained with updates on inflation indices and expanded with additional event data.