How To Avoid Surprises on Site

Every day on a site is hectic. Part of your job is being prepared for the unexpected and being able to adapt. While it’s a testament to your ability to navigate changes and mishaps, so is eliminating surprises all together. Avoiding surprises will ensure that you stay on schedule and on budget, making the most of your resources.


Missed deadlines, slow contractors, materials arriving behind schedule, and a lack of streamlined processes all lead to breakdowns in communication. Sound familiar? That’s because these are just a handful of daily issues that builders encounter.

 

These issues happen for a variety of reasons. Missed deadlines have a variety of negative consequences. Poor scheduling stems from: relying on memory to meet deadlines, not promptly informing the impacted parties of a schedule change, and having to manually follow up with subcontractors to confirm they can perform the scheduled work. 

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A major root cause of the issues mentioned above stem from communication. Whether it’s from a lack of communication, slow and untimely communication, or, little to no record of communication, this is a costly error that can be seen all over the country. These inefficiencies go both ways; sometimes, the error is on an underperforming subcontractor, a client who doesn’t remember what they communicated, and at times, the error is on the project manager for not having a tried and tested process to professionally manage their people and projects.

As a result of these inefficiencies, money gets lost, the pace of the project slows down and deadlines are not met. An influx of schedule changes also effects other parties who become upset by your inability to be punctual. Not to mention bruising your reputation from the clients point of view.

As surprises are part of our industry, establishing a proven process goes a long way. Creating a weekly report will help keep clients up to speed with project status. Weekly reports should feature items such as: Current status of project, customer financials, latest project pictures, approved change orders, and more.

Creating these weekly reports on a digital platform makes distribution and documenting all items much easier for both your company and your client. Digital documentation also increases transparency to display your teams responsibility and control of the project.

Managing time more efficiently allows a project manager to follow up on delegated tasks and avoid mishaps like a client showing up to a site where no one is working.

 

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What is the key? One central database. With a central point of communication, parties involved can post questions, comments, and view deadlines in real time. Leveraging technology allows us to centralize important communication across an entire project, ensuring everyone is always on the same page.

With these techniques at your disposal, you’ll meet and exceed expectations. You will be well prepared to tackle these common problems that present themself on a daily basis.



BuildTools provides a framework that enables builders and remodelers to accomplish all of the above steps using one tool.

Find all changes and updates in one location with BuildTools and cut down on pesky surprises.

 

About the Author
Sven Gustafson