Creating A More Cost-Effective Construction Project
Creating a more cost effective project means disrupting poor behaviors and possibly leveraging new technology to help your team with improved workflows delivering on a new promise – achieving more, with less resources but generating higher profits. It usually begins with planning and getting the right team in place — the owner, architect, and specialty contractors all in one place to develop an integrated labor and project delivery effort. Here are some tips to save money on future construction projects.
Perhaps the most important step in reducing construction costs is to plan properly. Know exactly what you want from the start, especially any special features your building will need. Providing your contractor with complete information in the initial phase increases the chances that your actual outlay will be as close to the budgeted amount as possible. This will also help prevent any unfortunate surprises from cropping up during construction.
Detailed drawings and models are an easy way to create better plans. Drawings range from simple to more complex, but this works in everyone’s favor. Highly detailed building information models can detect issues before construction starts. This helps the project manager create a better road map for project completion.
Get Your Contractor Involved Right Away
Why wouldn’t you invite the person that will do 95% of the work (and rework) to the design/planning phase? You may think that your contractor can just get involved after an architect’s plans are finalized. The truth is, architects don’t always consider all of the practical aspects of construction that can cause problems. Contractors know more about local codes and industry trends that can impact the project’s design. Architects also may design a project using materials and options that aren’t practical in your particular circumstances. Having your contractor involved in the design process as early as possible will help you avoid such issues before they drive up costs.
Using a centralized drawing and model also makes collaboration easier. Gathering everyone into one room to discuss the drawing and plan can yield great results. Informational building modeling and industry experts can quickly root out problems.
Use Construction Takeoff Software
Estimators use construction takeoff software to help estimate the cost of a construction project. This software typically helps track the amount of materials required for a project as well as how much they will cost based on current market prices. This type of software can be extremely helpful in determining the cost of a project and helping set the most accurate expectations. The data collected is extremely useful when it’s imported into your project management platform when you’re read to build.
Some drawing tools use a database of equipment and material costs, like BIM 360. This allows users the ability to get better estimates than ever before. Since three dimensional drawing tools can calculate the amount of a material needed for a feature, the model can estimate the total material need. From there it, and an estimator can check the numbers and provide a more accurate estimate.
Keep Track of Metrics
Construction costs can spiral out of control easily if project teams don’t keep a close eye on their metrics throughout the process. By watching your project’s productivity metrics regularly throughout the process, you will be able to spot potential issues almost immediately. That can make a huge difference in determining whether those issues will affect the project’s overall cost. Project management software can help you benchmark all activities and schedules and make it easy for keeping track of the metrics that matter.
Project managers can use new drawing tools to compare the drawing estimates to the current building. Some drawing and modeling tools can estimate how complete a building will be and model the completeness. This allows project managers to know where the project should be, and find ways to remedy it.
Choose Cost-Effective Materials
There’s more to the cost of a material than how much you spend to purchase it. Certain materials may have a lower cost at the onset, but may cost more in terms of labor to install it or may result in higher maintenance costs down the road. Consider the installation time, labor costs and all other factors when choosing materials. The best construction companies import this data into a project management solution that is designed for subs.
Adopt Lean Construction Principles
There are numerous resources available to help you utilize lean construction processes so you can reduce waste. Project manager should avoid wasting time, labor, and material that make the project less economical.
Enjoy this infographic and good luck on your next project.