With most projects going over time and budget, it can be hard to know what successful construction project management looks like. However, it’s not impossible. Understanding successful construction project management steps and tips can make project management easier and project managers more successful.
Project Management Steps
Construction project management can be broken down into five steps. These steps help project managers keep the project on the path and make it successful. Here are the five steps.
This happens before the project starts, the project manager reports on feasibility. This report will determine whether it’s a good idea to take on the project or not. If the project is feasible then the parties can start working towards the project. The project manager will write up the project initiation document which covers the needs and case for it and the project moves to the next stage.
The planning phase of a project is what most people think of when it comes to project management. This is when the project manager develops the project roadmap otherwise known as the project management plan. The plan is an approved document that guides project execution and sets the baselines for cost, scope, and timeline. The project management plan will have scope documentation, the work breakdown structure, the risk management plan, and the communications plan.
This section of the project is when the work begins. Execution starts with the kickoff meeting, the plan is set in motion and it is the job of the project manager to continue to manage it. They will have to set up any and all tracking systems, update the schedule and change the plan if necessary.
While not fully separate from the execution section of the plan, the monitoring portion can feel separate. This is how a company measures the progress within a project and whether it’s performing according to plan or not. This section and it’s tasks are responsible for tracking and helping manage the project health. Without monitoring, it would be hard to know whether there should be changes to the project management plan.
The end of the project is the project close. This is when the project manager will meet with others on the project to discuss what went well and what didn’t. It’s the same time the project manager will create the punch list for any lingering tasks. The project manager will also finalize the budget and report on the project. The end report is important because it is a great way to learn and grow, it can help a project manager increase their skills and improve future projects.
Tips for Successful Construction Project Management
Knowing the steps for construction project management will only get a manager so far. These tips will help improve construction project management and enable project managers.
Complete a Total Project Assessment
A project assessment is a must to be a successful project manager. It lets a project manager know what is going on in a project. A project assessment is also important in determining how to lead a project. If it’s similar to something the construction project manager has done before then it would be easier to lead the project.
If the project manager is coming in mid-project or such then they need to know everything about the project. The only way a new project manager can succeed is if their predecessor doesn’t hide any information. This can be the difference between success and failure.
It might seem like the goal of project management is to keep the project on time, budget, and to plan. Even when a project is going well, a successful project manager should evaluate the project and plan. There could be a better way to manage the project or a problem on the horizon. Without further investigation and looking at areas within the project that they could be doing better, they’ll never know. The best way to have successful construction project management is to constantly reevaluate the project and how it’s being managed, to ask questions of your employees and to use their peers to improve the project.
For successful construction project management, it is important to have project managers that are always improving. Project management best practice has changed over the years, there are now software services out there to help with project management compared to pen and paper. As such project managers need to be continuously learning and improving their techniques. Project managers that don’t want to learn new techniques, can’t admit they were wrong, or can’t admit when they’re unsure won’t make a project successful. They are likely to continue things the way they’re used to which doesn’t always benefit the project.
The only way to improve your construction project management success rates is through trial and error and learning from all mistakes. Following the project management steps, and using all available resources will make successful construction project management easier.