8 things to keep in mind to track your construction project management
- 1. How can I track Current Vs. Expected project progress?
- 2. How to estimate and find the correct project cost?
- 3. What are Technology Enabled work schedules and timetables?
- 4. How to manage resources effectively?
- 5. How can I map causes for delays?
- 6. How to do the quality review?
- 7. How can I foresee the impact of weather?
- 8. What are the Health & Safety impacts?
If you want to have control over the total cost and time of your construction project, active project management is essential. Many unforeseen issues could arise during the project's duration. Construction stakeholders can benefit from the following key points to identify critical areas and data to focus on. This article also serves as a beginner's guide to construction project management.
1. How can I track Current Vs. Expected project progress?
Construction project management involves several phases: design, planning, scheduling, and completion. Each phase is complex in its own right and even more so when considering the overall project. To ensure that work progresses as planned, it is essential to analyze current and expected project progress. Several project management tools available in the market can assist with this task.
These tools include project management platforms (AECIS is an example), which provide features such as task scheduling, resource allocation, budget tracking, and progress monitoring... With the help of these tools, construction project managers can track the status of individual tasks, identify areas of delay or potential roadblocks, and adjust project timelines and resources accordingly.
Another important aspect of construction project management is communication. Effective communication among project stakeholders is essential to ensure everyone knows project goals, timelines, and progress. This communication can be facilitated through regular project meetings, progress reports, and other communication tools.
In addition to these tools, it is also essential for managers to stay up to date with industry standards and regulations. They must ensure that all work is performed in compliance with relevant laws and regulations and that workers are trained in proper safety practices. This requires ongoing education and training for project managers and construction workers alike.
2. How to estimate and find the correct project cost?
All projects ultimately come down to money. With a larger budget, you can hire more people to complete the project faster and deliver more. Planning major home improvements can be costly, but there are ways to reduce the budget, such as negotiating the contract price and terms with contractors.
While many contractors are willing to lower costs or negotiate specific contract terms when competing for work, some will provide a fixed contract price upfront. It's important to compare competing quotations carefully, as some contractors may charge extra for contract omissions, leading to cost overruns at the end of construction. Always verify a contractor's experience and credentials before making a hiring decision.
While it may seem like a good idea to purchase supplies independently, the construction supply chain model is different, and individual material rates can be significantly higher than a trustworthy builder can offer. Therefore, it's better to stick with a transparent and trustworthy builder to avoid losing money.
The cost of home improvement projects can also vary depending on the season. Seeking estimates during a slower construction period can result in contractors being more willing to negotiate costs with you, potentially saving you money.
3. What are Technology Enabled work schedules and timetables?
To monitor the progress of your project, it is necessary to have a tracking system in place. There are several ways to do this, including using cloud-based solutions, Gantt charts, team scheduling, timesheets, and construction management platforms.
Cloud-based solutions are effective tools for tracking the construction process, but they are mostly paid software used for commercial purposes. Gantt charts provide a visual timeline for your project, making it easy to edit schedules quickly. Team scheduling and resource management are also essential features for charting the availability, skillset, cost, and allocation of your workforce and construction materials in real time. Timesheets are another way to manage your team's hours and can be updated quickly from any location.
Construction professionals such as field engineers, site managers, and designers should use project management platforms to track construction. These platforms can be used for managing team timesheets and daily reports, viewing and commenting on drawings, and even for simple communication and chat. Digitizing documents through management platforms makes finding information faster and easier, and many platforms allow for cloud storage of documents. Additionally, it can be used for timesheet updates, project tracking, cost comparison, and other purposes.
AECIS - a project management platform that can help you do that easily with 9 features, including Dashboard, Issue, Submittal, Dmap, Risk, Daily Report, Dform, Milestone, and Cost/ Change Order.
4. How to manage resources effectively?
To carry out project tasks in project management, you require resources such as workers, funding, equipment, facilities, or anything else necessary for completing a project activity. However, with proper planning and procurement of adequate resources, you can execute an action within a prefixed time schedule.
In construction project implementation, the availability of resources is a critical factor for success, alongside the quality and quantity of work. Each project task must have sufficient and appropriate resources allocated to complete the activity on time and within budget. Therefore, ensuring adequate resource deployment at each level of the construction activity is crucial.
5. How can I map causes for delays?
Construction project delays are significant obstacles to success and performance. The most common causes of project delays include connecting work, changes in work plans, workforce, external conditions, and material and construction design.
To avoid unforeseen project delays and manage projects efficiently, consider the following suggestions:
- Place significant emphasis on project planning.
- Continuously track and measure progress.
- Strictly controlled time overrun is the difference between estimated and actual completion times.
- Continuously analyze potential cost overrun, also known as cost escalation.
Mapped delays include:
- Excusable delays are unexpected delays beyond anyone's control.
- Concurrent delays, for which neither the contractor nor owner is responsible.
- Compensable delays, for which either the contractor or owner is responsible, and critical delays generally impact the schedule and project activities.
6. How to do the quality review?
To enhance the quality of your work, it is essential to review processes, procedures, and practices and identify areas for improvement as necessary. Quality control is crucial as it leads to economic benefits.
Construction projects are complex processes that involve various factors affecting construction quality, such as design, hydrology, machinery, materials, geology, meteorology, topography, construction technology, methods of operation, technical measures, and management systems.
Due to the significant project volume, and fixed and varying project locations, poor control of these factors can result in quality issues. Implementing a defined Quality Checking process that can be tracked using technology tools, as mentioned earlier, is helpful.
7. How can I foresee the impact of weather?
Ignoring weather as a risk in construction can have severe consequences, as it is one of the main risks in construction. While current weather forecasts are more accurate than they were a few decades ago, they are not 100% accurate and provide a general picture of what to expect. However, there are several measures we can take to mitigate some of the delays caused by bad weather.
- Plan earthwork activities according to expected rainfall
- Close up buildings before the rainy or cold season
- Plan roofing and lifting of large loads outside the windy season
- Allow additional time in the schedule to compensate for delays caused by inclement weather
- Implement protective measures
- Reschedule tasks in anticipation of bad weather
- Ensure adequate water pumps are on-site and a system is in place to dispose of water
- Modify working times for construction.
8. What are the Health & Safety impacts?
Construction sites are often filled with hazards that pose a risk to workers and others present on-site. Some common hazards include falls from heights, electrical hazards, exposure to harmful substances, and accidents involving heavy machinery. These risks can result in serious injuries and fatalities, which is why health and safety are given the utmost importance in the construction industry.
To mitigate these risks, safety risk assessments must be conducted during each phase of the construction project. This involves identifying potential hazards and evaluating associated risks. By conducting a thorough risk assessment, it becomes easier to determine the necessary control measures that should be implemented to minimize risks.
It's important to prioritize safety risks when conducting risk assessments because failure to do so can result in severe consequences. This can include project delays, legal issues, and most importantly, harm to human life. By placing safety at the forefront of risk assessment, it becomes easier to implement preventative measures that will ultimately lead to a safer and more successful construction project.
In conclusion, tracking a construction project is a complex task requiring attention to detail, effective communication, and the right tools and techniques. By keeping these eight things in mind, you can enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of your construction project management and achieve better outcomes.
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