Two tips for how to manage construction projects


If you find yourself asking the question “how do I manage construction projects?” you’re probably at a point where that question is causing you (and everyone you work with) a lot of stress and confusion. 

As you know, construction project managers have one goal: deliver a project on schedule and on budget.

While there is no surefire way to manage every construction project perfectly, there are certain tools and tips of the trade that can help to set you up for success, now, and in the future. Here are two tips to help you better manage your construction project.

1. Use a construction project management tool

In the world of construction project management, you need a single source of truth. The amount of time you spend collecting information from different sources and stakeholders, via different communication tools and mediums can too easily lead to confusion and a lack of clarity. Emails, texts, documents, meetings, phone calls, contracts, memos, reports...You name it, you’re managing it. 

Admin is by far the most cumbersome aspect of a construction project manager’s workload. 

Plus, on top of that you need to keep up with what’s happening on-site, even while you’re in the office or busy managing the other one thousand things on your plate. 
Instead of getting bogged down with trying to keep up, let a construction project management tool do the admin for you. One tool that collects ALL your data into one place can significantly reduce the amount of busywork on your plate. As a result, you get overarching visibility into what’s going on, where, when, why, and how it’s all going down. 

Not only can a construction project management tool reduce the busy work and give you a single source of truth, but it can also help train key stakeholders and colleagues to take some of the burden of admin on for themselves. 

Construction project management tools often have the ability to assign roles and responsibilities as well as set deadlines and priority statuses for various tasks...from right within the tool itself. In other words, if you need a BOQ by next Tuesday, you don’t need to hop on a call to track down it’s status. Instead, you can simply task it out to whoever is responsible, assign a due date and empower them to meet the deadline. 

Beyond that, a good feature to look for in a construction project management tool is one that lets you have conversations about a task at hand right there, visibly on the task itself. Comments, @ mentions, and the ability to link tasks to client conversations, is critical for keeping visibility high and staying on top of everything. If that BOQ is going to take an extra week, don’t jump to another communications channel like email to discuss it, instead keep the conversation (and the conversation history) right there inside the construction project management tool so you always have one overarching source of truth.

To recap, your construction project management solution needs to have communication and project tracking all in one to give you what you need to better achieve your desired goals.

2. Master your construction project workflow

It’s the age-old saying: practice makes perfect. Well, when it comes to your construction project workflow, repeatability is the name of the game.

Especially now with COVID-19 affecting how construction projects are run, having a solid, standardized construction workflow should be the least of your worries. Reinventing the wheel on every new job site shouldn’t happen, but if it does, don’t worry—you’re not alone. 

An integrated construction project management tool is one step in the right direction for creating a repeatable workflow. You can use the project tracker for standardizing tasks and for every item on your project to-do list. You will build a specific process to follow (and we also recommend documenting it somewhere so it’s never forgotten, even when you move onto a new project or site).

For example, you can create a workflow for the project punch list that you need to submit at the project closeout. Build yourself a standard checklist template of all the work and tasks that haven’t conformed to the contract specifications. There are bound to be many that come up, but often they’ll fall into similar buckets or repeat across different projects. Standardizing this workflow will make sure the punch list isn’t more stressful than it has to be.

Managing construction projects can be simple with the right tool

When you look at the construction industry today, you can see that agility and innovation is leading to vast improvements across the board. Yet, the construction industry is still one of the least digitized industries in the world. 

So many other industries have already moved far ahead with adopting new innovations to help improve project success, and industry leaders know that technology is the way of the future.

As the champion of project success, it is time for construction project managers to embrace innovation and lead the charge with technology. As a construction project manager, it’s time to get creative with your construction project management process, and that means looking to technology to help you along the way. Why shouldn’t you use something that helps you work better...not harder?

A construction project management tool by your side is key. Not only for streamlining communication and standardizing workflows, but for ensuring that you save yourself from too much admin. With the right construction project management tool supporting you along the project journey, you give yourself the brain space to focus on what matters most: the success of your project.

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