What Does Good Construction Management Look Like? Four Steps to Use on Any Project

From a client’s perspective, a construction job is considered a success if it is completed on-time, within budget, and without any injuries to workers.  A job that moves along smoothly without any major delays or errors is the sign of a job where sufficient time was spent on the planning process. Efficient and successful construction management requires careful consideration of scheduling, critical path items, permitting processes, materials management, and site-specific health and safety concerns.  The following facets of construction management are typical, regardless of the scope-of-work to be performed, the size, and the budget of a job:

  1. Creation of a clear and complete technical bid document.

A well-prepared bid document describes all aspects of the work to be completed, beginning with site mobilization and concluding with site demobilization.  The bid document serves equally as an instruction manual to contractors and as the basis for determining job pricing.  Most importantly, each section of the bid document must contain explicit requirements and performance standards to set acceptable work quality expectations for the contractor.  Omissions, ambiguous wording, and contradictory statements within the text of the bid document may make it difficult for the construction manager to carry out a job in full accordance with the client’s needs.

  1. Holding interactive Pre-Bid and Pre-Construction meetings.

Pre-Bid and Pre-Construction meetings are important forums for the construction manager to clarify  the technical specifications and contract drawings, ensuring that everyone involved acts in accordance with the client’s desired outcomes.  Within these meetings, the construction manager details the following, at a minimum: a summary of the project scope of work and schedule, licensing requirements, normal work hours, OSHA requirements, shop drawing submittals, communication expectations, use of client facilities, contractor request for payment, applicable local, state, and federal regulations, and policy on contactor-proposed substitutions.  At these meetings, contractors are encouraged to ask any questions that may pertain to the work.  Before site work begins, it is vital that the contractor, construction manager, and client have similar expectations with respect to quality of finished work and contractor health and safety.  It is essential for the contractor to submit a detailed weekly schedule to the construction manager and client for approval.

  1. Periodic progress-tracking and managing the work schedule.

As mentioned above, an approved contractor schedule will be the basis for keeping work moving at the expected pace.  The construction manager will reference the schedule on a daily basis when discussing the completed and upcoming work.  Holding progress meetings (usually once a week) between the contractor, construction manager, and the client will keep all parties informed on the status of the work, and also provides a forum for all parties to raise any concerns or issues. As the job moves forward, the contractor will be required to update his or her schedule accordingly to coincide with the mutually agreed-upon details of the progress meeting.

 

  1. Facilitating the formal close-out of a job.

Once construction is finished, the construction manager must assess if all items within the scope-of-work were completed by the contractor.  If not, the construction manager must create a “punch list” of remaining tasks which the contractor is contractually required to complete.  Once all work is done to the satisfaction of the construction manager and the client, then and only then may the contractor submit a final payment request.  The construction manager must make sure that As-Built Construction Drawings are submitted to the required agencies for final approval, and that all operating permits are obtained for the construction performed.

 

Walden Environmental Engineering provides a variety of services including those related to construction management.  Please call us at (516) 624-7200 to learn more about how we can help you with your next project.

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