Here are 9 tips on how to complete a construction project on time:
- Plan for the construction project.
- Create a detailed schedule for the project.
- Create and sign the paperwork.
- Do prep work before breaking ground.
- Make a list of all supplies.
- Gather the construction crew.
- Oversee the project.
- Provide the client with regular progress reports.
- Prepare for problems that may arise.
1. Plan for the Construction ProjectPlanning a construction project can be complicated, as there’s a lot of information to digest and process. Avoiding construction project problems starts by taking the necessary steps to ensure that the project is as safe and successful as possible. Below are factors to consider when planning a construction project:
- Insurance – The most critical factor in planning a construction project is ensuring that the project is insured. Insurance should cover liability, property damage, and equipment damage. If a project isn’t adequately insured, do not even begin it!
- Budget – When discussing a construction project with a client, ask about their budget immediately. Having a clearly defined budget to work with makes it possible to create a construction plan. Remember to include all material costs, labor costs, and subcontractors in the budget.
- Quality – Quality is everything when it comes to showing a completed construction project. Creating a construction plan that aims for the highest quality build will impress clients and result in further business through referrals and word-of-mouth.
- Safety – When it comes to construction, one of the most important things to keep in mind is safety. While working on a construction project, ensure that safety is first and foremost. Any safety issues will undoubtedly result in a longer than expected completion date.
- Legal – It is essential to keep in mind that certain items can affect the legality of a construction project. Be sure that your construction company is licensed, bonded, and insured. Following the regulations will help ensure that the project runs smoothly and legally.
2. Create a Detailed Schedule for the ProjectMany construction project managers use their intuition when determining how long a construction project will take. However, it is far better to use historical data and project scheduling software to create a more accurate timeframe for project completion. allows a construction company to:
- Organize all the tasks that make up a project.
- Determine how long these mini-projects will take.
- Assign a start date and end date to a particular project.
The Critical Path MethodThe is a straightforward way to schedule projects. This method shows all activities that a project entails along with a completion timeframe. The date for completion of each activity has a soft and a hard deadline. As long as every activity completes before the hard deadline, the project should finish before the scheduled completion date.
Experience Is the Key to Estimating Project Completion DatesIn addition to project scheduling software, project managers with experience can estimate a project completion date with accuracy. Since these experts have participated in many construction projects, they are the go-to source for anything related to construction. Any construction company that isn’t exactly sure when they will complete a project should receive an expert’s advice and get their professional opinion. While consultation may not be cheap, it will save companies a great deal of grief if they can plan their project properly and complete the project before the estimated completion date.
3. Create and Sign the PaperworkEnsure that all documents are created and signed – the contracts, the acceptance criteria, a detailed project schedule, the scope statement, and the estimates. Write all documents in plain English. Paperwork with detailed instructions on all aspects of the project will ensure clear communication with the client, so there will be little chance of backtracking and extending the project completion date.
Creating a Statement of Work (SOW)Define a with input from the client. This document should include the scope of the work and the work breakdown structure (WBS). Write the SOW in simple terms, so the client understands what they are signing. Get a signed copy of the SOW, either handwritten, scanned, emailed, or in a PDF. If you don’t have a signed copy, call and ask your client to send it before starting the project. After the client has defined the overall scope of a construction project, spend time on project logistics, sourcing project materials, and estimate how much time it will take the construction crew to complete this project. Ideally, add on a few weeks to the estimated completion date to account for unforeseen circumstances that may arise. A little buffer zone will significantly increase the probability of completing a construction project on time. With a defined date in mind for completing a construction project, begin writing a rough draft of the project contract.
Signing a Construction ContractConstruction companies should always work with . Lawyers will ensure that everything is legally binding before showing it to a client. When a contract is ready, meet with the client, ensure that they are satisfied with the contract, and sign it. Both the client and the construction company should keep a copy of this contract for their records.
The Acceptance Criteria and the Scope StatementGet clear and accurate acceptance criteria – your client should have clearly defined acceptance criteria in the contract. The construction team should have access to detailed notes, images, and a link to the original acceptance criteria. Make sure the acceptance criteria are clearly defined and include all details. Send the scope statement to the client via a Scope Statement, email, or through the mail. The client should have access to these documents before they sign the contract.
Payments and InvoicingAt every step of the process, be sure to save invoices and payment requests. This includes even the small purchases since they will quickly add up. It is important to document when and how much payment is received. When accepting payment, track the payment to prevent any monetary problems that could cause the project to come to a standstill.
4. Do Prep Work Before Breaking GroundAfter signing a construction project contract, many companies rush in eagerly to start the work. However, there are still , including:
- Ensure that all insurance policies are up to date.
- Determine where underground electrical cables, water pipes, and gas lines are.
- Verify the boundaries of a property where construction will take place.
- After completing all the prep work, it is finally time to start working on the construction project.