In a perfect world, all of your projects would get completed on time, under budget and without any hiccups along the way. Sounds nice, doesn’t it? Well, it will come as no surprise, that we, in fact, don’t always live in a perfect world and as construction managers, we need to constantly be on the hunt for new ways to help us successfully improve project delivery. When projects get completed on time and with greater efficiency, it can reap a multitude of benefits like:
- Projects cost less to complete
- Materials aren’t wasted
- Competitive bidding
- Higher profits
- GC’s are more likely to use you for future jobs
Here are 5 construction business management tips for improving project delivery that you can implement.
1. Improve Your Planning
Most of us have heard the age-old saying of “Measure twice, cut once”. It’s the perfect representation of how you should be treating the planning of a project. Since the majority of errors on a project occur in the planning phase of the project, it’s essential that you take the time to do your homework before the building begins. The planning phase can include (but is not limited to); setting a budget, organizing a work schedule, prioritizing tasks, setting project deadlines, and communicating expectations to your team. By having a plan in place before a project begins forces the project manager to look at all the steps of a project and helps create a road-map for the rest of the team to follow as well as a provide benchmarks for the team.
2. Provide Your Team with New Technology
Utilizing the right combination of technology in all the phases of a project will help streamline work and data and will help improve project deliverability. Starting in the planning phase, by using technology like BIM 360 (Building Information Modeling) you can get real-time updates and changes on plans for your entire team. BIM help to support informed decision-making and leading to more predictable and profitable outcomes.
But technology shouldn’t just stop at the planning phase. In order to really improve product delivery, project managers need to invest in integrated systems. Integrated technologies like modeling and a construction management tool can help keep your team on track. With real-time updates between the field and office, any changes that would normally slow down a project can be communicated quickly and efficiently, and changes approved and made on the fly.
Technology integration doesn’t stop have to stop at the planning and building phase of a project. With a best of breed project managing solution, you can also connect your accounting system. Accounting integration eliminates the need for manual entry and allows for information to flow between departments in real-time so that when your team goes over their allotted hours, your accounting team can adjust budgets and adapt to stay on track.
Project managers need information to be timely and accessible in order to make decisions or provide updates and keep a project on track.
3. Improve Communication
Communication is key for a project to be successful. You might think that this is a no brainer, but the reason many projects turn bad is because of the lack in the dialogue between the field and back office. Communication is also vital at the start of a project. You should set expectations, timelines, and protocols when problems arise prior to stepping on the job site. When the Project Manager and his or her crew aren’t properly aligned on objectives the project will be delayed.
Stakeholders must communicate with each other throughout the length of the project. It’s important that when problems arise on a site, like a broken pipe, that your team can document the issue. It’s even better when they annotate any pictures and send it to you for approval for replacement parts. Without this type of communication pipeline in place, work can be at a stalled and inevitably your project will fall behind.
4. Invest in Your Employees
You pay for what you get, the same can be said about the people you hire. Getting the right people on the job is key to completing a job well, on time, and under budget. By investing in your employees and helping them to master critical skills, you’ll see an uptick in efficiency on your project. Offering regular training on workplace safety and refresher courses on proper technique can also help prevent workplace injuries.
5. Expect the Best, Plan for the Worst
Construction sites can be unpredictable places. With shifts in weather, delays in material deliveries, and general human error, it important to be proactive rather than reactive. So before things go awry on the job and you panic, try planning your budget and schedule to accommodate and delays you might run into. By preparing for these inevitable delays, it’ll take the stress off of you and deliver your project successfully.