A construction project that goes over budget and off-schedule will cost contractors precious time and money. One way to avoid these critical errors is by having a workflow in place that assures both you and your client that all project variables are accounted for. We’ve compiled some helpful tips to keep your bottom line safe from disaster.
This is the earliest and most critical stage in the project management process. Proper assessment of all materials needed to complete a project will ensure that you remain on schedule.
Additionally, it cannot be understated how important adequate staffing is to remaining on-schedule. If you underestimate the number of hands you’ll need to complete a project, you risk going off-schedule.
Project managers can plan better by implementing a workflow for the earliest stage in the project management process: determining the people, processes, information, materials, and equipment necessary to execute and complete a project.
Ever-present in almost every facet of modern life, technology has made it easy to communicate, travel, make purchases, and plan for the future. Funny enough, all of these behaviors are critical to the completion of any construction project.
Integrating the use of project management software into your team’s workflow will centralize processes and information. Make it easy for different members of your team to successfully track billing and invoicing, contacting contractors, record incident reporting, collect and track leads, complete timesheets, and manage scheduling. These are the details that get projects to completion and allowing your team to complete these tasks using a single software will set them up for success.
It’s critical to your team’s success that time is dedicated to training when introducing new systems to staff (and when introducing new staff to established systems). Set up every member of your team for success. In order to do that, managers need to provide proper training to not only the crew on the ground, but also their supervisors so that processes are streamlined and collaboration is set between team members.
But it’s not enough to train your staff on how to use technology, providing reasons why they need to complete a process will add value to the steps they take to track their progress and make it easier to integrate these new processes and technology into their workflow. If your team members understand the value of processes and workflows, then they are more likely to truly integrate them while practicing them properly and consistently.
The best way for project managers to know exactly how a project is progressing is to communicate directly with the crew.
How can you know whether there are issues on the ground that can possibly delay the completion date of a project if you are not communicating with anyone working directly on site? Direct communication with staff can provide advanced warning when or if something might delay the progress of a project.
Most importantly, setting expectations and communicating those expectations whether it be for the day, week, or month, will help to assure that you and your crew are on the same page. Further, communicating expectations directly to your staff can prompt their feedback on what they believe can truly be accomplished, and what may not be feasible, allowing you to be proactive in readjusting goals instead of reacting when something is already delayed.
The best way to ensure expectations are met and projects are completed is to use performance measures. Measuring performance can hold your crew accountable. By establishing performance measures from the outset of a project, you are communicating to your team your expectations for process and execution. Outlining these measures for the start will allow for transparency on the manager’s part and accountability on the part of the crew.
Taking the time to measure performance throughout the course of a project will also enable you to stay engaged with the project itself and allow a direct connection between you and your crew.
Performance metrics for teams can include time and attendance, efficiency, initiative, and quality. Be sure to clearly communicate what you’re measuring, what the value of the metric is, and how you will be sharing the information and assessment.
Beginning with the planning stage, project managers can outline the measures they will take to ensure their team is successful. Planning for technological training, performance measures, and proper methods of communication will set up a crew and project for success. These functions will help managers avoid surprise delays and financial misplanning, both of which are critical to the success and reputation of construction companies.
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