What is the Role of a Construction Project Manager?
You probably hear the term “project manager” thrown around quite a bit, but what does being a project manager really mean?
The project manager is ultimately responsible for all time, cost, and quality requirements on a project and sees these out from beginning to end. Due to the long time-span and broad job description, the project manager performs many different tasks in his effort to carry out and control a project.
The role of the construction project manager includes the following duties:
Planning and Forecasting
The project manager must be able to estimate time and costs and create the schedule by the specifications of the project. The project manager should use a combination of personal skill and expertise as well as estimating and scheduling software to ensure that he is making the most accurate plans.
Once the project manager has planned for all costs, materials, time, and labor, he must decide how to allocate those resources. This means that the project manager must allocate a certain amount of labor and materials for each task to keep the schedule running smoothly. If the project manager fails to allocate resources accurately, the team may face a shortage or overage of labor or materials. A shortage will negatively impact both the schedule and the budget, as more manpower will be needed to complete the task. On the other hand, an overage of resources will cost the company money with unnecessary labor and materials costs.
A project manager must ensure that his team is always staffed and that they are doing their jobs accurately and effectively. In order to effectively keep an eye on the team, he must have an exceptional means of communication that is both reliable and highly mobile. Mobile technology will allow the project manager to constantly be in contact with his workers to ensure that he can address any problems that may arise as soon as possible.
On top of scheduling and planning before the onset of a project, the project manager is also responsible for monitoring the project’s progress and responding appropriately to any changes or challenges a project may face. An integrated project management solution will allow the project manager to more effectively track progress both on and off the field by observing daily reports and setting checklists for the field-workers.
The project manager often works with other project stakeholders such as the owner or contractor and gets estimates from the architects and engineers to create a reasonable budget. Due to the often-unpredictable conditions in construction, the project manager must include unforeseen costs in the budget. As the project occurs and any changes are made that may affect cost, the project manager is responsible for ensuring that a change order is submitted and recorded. A project management solution will keep all change orders centralized and automatically organized by project, which will help the project manager to keep track of all change orders.
A construction project manager, like any manager, must be able to lead a team and delegate tasks in the most efficient manner. This means that the project manager must be aware of his team and each individual’s strengths and weaknesses to effectively assign tasks.
Collaboration and Communication
Construction project managers are responsible for communicating with his team, any architects or engineers, as well as the contractor or project owner. In order to communicate with all of these people effectively, the project manager must have both excellent communication skills as well as a sufficient means of communication. Mobile technology can help the project manager be in constant contact with all relevant parties while they are on the go. This constant communication ensures that the project manager is always informed at all times.
Think you have what it takes?
Here is a breakdown of some of the skills required to be a successful construction project manager.
–Excellent communication skills—A project manager must be able to communicate with all involved parties.
–Construction expertise—The project manager will be the first person that workers turn to for questions and advice.
–Leadership and management skills—The project manager must be able to manage his team effectively.
–Financial responsibility—The project manager is responsible for the budget and other cost variables.
–Multi-tasking—The project manager is responsible for a wide variety of tasks that often overlap.
–Critical path analysis—The project manager must determine the schedule of labor and resources based on his estimation of the critical path.
The good news for the project manager
The project manager has a lot to juggle; He is in charge of everything from the beginning to the end of a project. Luckily for the project manager, there are project management solutions available that will aid in estimating, planning, benchmarking, reporting, and documenting.