The core of a construction company is the project itself. What happens when managing those projects can literally put a company out of business. This makes project managers the most important position in a construction company. Others may be responsible for certain tasks or roles, project managers have to be about to do everything well. They must know all project plans as well as all of the workers, tasks, goals, and budgets. They also represent the company’s reputation by producing a quality finished job that exceeds expectations.
Even though there have been huge strides in software and technology in construction software, many companies are still relying on outdated processes and systems. It was noted that only 52 percent of construction project managers were using a construction management software solution geared toward construction project management. An unbelievable 37 percent said they were wasting at least two hours or more per day on project documentation alone. Darin Bailey, project sponsor for Hunter Contracting, a Gilbert, Arizona based heavy highway contractor, said they felt “this is how we’ve always done it” His company, thankfully embraced leading-edge software recently and are saving time and increasing profits because of it.
The core of a construction company may be the project, but the core of the project is the people working on it. A company needs to hire intelligent capable workers to get good result. Hire workers ready to join you in your company’s vision for the future. Construction is now growing again after the recession. Because there are so many jobs available it might be hard to find skilled labor.
“It’s changed how we choose our construction teams,” said Dallas Williams, vice president and general manager at Red Deer, Alberta based general contractor Scott Builders.Williams, who has served as lead project manager on many of his company’s projects said decisions are being driven by money. “Right now, it’s based on price and it should be based on value, experience, reputation, etc.”
Projects managers don’t get to choose the members of their teams. Construction projects differ somewhat and there for people are often changing. A project manager for a medium sized construction company might be responsible for thousands of workers that have to do with the projects in some way. Because of this they probably don’t know the different skills these works might possess.
It is the project managers job to make sure every worker has the capabilities and is certified in their field. They must also make sure the whole team understands the individual project deadlines and special circumstances. “We start each activity with a pre-activity meeting that discusses all aspects of that scope of work, including budge,” Hunter Contracting’s Bailey said. “We talk about crew size, productions, safety, and more and we make sure the foreman or superintendent is on board with knowing what the expectations are. It makes it easier to follow up during the construction process to discuss how things are going. My most successful projects involve sharing as much information as possible.”