"Is your construction project healthy or is a cancer eating your profits?"
This last week I’ve had a cold which has made me feel tired and I have to constantly stop what I’m doing to blow my nose. This has impacted my work making me less efficient and leading to mistakes. Just as our performance suffers when we are ill our construction projects can suffer when they’re ill, or when they aren’t running as well as they should.
Do you know if your construction project is healthy, or is there a cancer that’s slowly eating your profits and impacting progress?
Construction project health tests
We are encouraged to undergo regular health check-ups. In the same way our construction projects undergo health check-ups. These may include:
The problem with most health checks is that they aren’t always reliable. They also sometimes detect the problem when it’s too late or the problem is already large. Of course some problems are misdiagnosed or the wrong treatment is prescribed. Then there are many who choose to ignore the warning signs and carry on as normal. Don't make these 10 mistakes with your cost reports
"Do not ignore the warning signs when your construction project is in trouble"
How to detect problems in construction projects early
Unfortunately, many construction project managers try to manage their projects from the office, relying on meetings, emails and reports to monitor their construction project. However, there’s nothing that beats actually walking the project, being in the field and interacting with your team.
When you do these walks, it’s usually obvious when the project isn’t healthy.
Is the project neat and organized, or is it chaotic?
Is everyone busy or are some standing around underutilized?
Is all the equipment being efficiently used?
Does there appear to be a plan in place?
When I walk around my construction projects I constantly look for 3 things:
But it’s also important to talk to your construction team. Observe how they interact with each other. Are they working as a team? Are they motivated to produce quality work, safely and as productively as possible? Do they have the right skills and equipment? Is morale good? Happy workers will be more productive than those who are simply waiting for the next pay-day.
As I walk around the field I also ask the following questions:
If the answer to any of these questions is no, there may be reasons to lodge a Variation Claim.
Have you talked to your customer recently? What do they think of the project’s progress and quality? You may be surprised at what they have to say – but hopefully not disappointed! But they will almost certainly appreciate the opportunity to share their thoughts.
Does your company actively promote the reporting of problems?
Know when there are problems on your construction projects
"Is your construction project performing like a well-trained and fit sports team or is it wheezing?"
Is your construction project performing like a well-trained and fit sports team or is it wheezing like a group of old men who’ve just climbed a flight of stairs? Is your project healthy, or are you waiting to assess those health checks at the end of the month? What will those health checks tell you, and will you know how to react to any bad news?
Being in the field enables you to perform a quick health check on your construction project – kind of like taking its temperature and checking the pulse. Detecting an unhealthy construction project early may enable you to take early preventative action to prevent the problems becoming worse, or perhaps just simmering away, sapping the project’s energy every day.
10 Commandments for Construction Project Managers
This article was first published on the ClockShark website - Get The Industries' #1 Time-Tracking AppRunning a field service or construction business takes coordination and a great team. With ClockShark you get the industries' #1 timesheet ap
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The opinions expressed in the attached articles are those of the writer. It should be noted that projects are varied and different laws and restrictions apply which depend on the location of the contractor and the project. It's important that the reader uses the supplied information taking cognisance of their particular circumstances. The writer assumes no responsibility or liability for any loss of any kind arising from the reader using the information or advice contained herein.
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