Construction project management consists of the direction, regulation and supervision of a project from conception to completion. The ultimate goal of construction project management is to accomplish the client’s goals both functionally and utilizing their budget while maintaining strict communication between all of the agents involved (stakeholders, community and contractors). Your construction project manager has to obtain a variety of skills to establish a functional connection with the numerous teams involved. Projects can fall under the categories of commercial, residential, industrial and heavy civil.
The BE3 team has the ability to plan and manage task orders on environmental projects nationwide including:
- Hazardous, toxic and radioactive (HTRW) projects
- Radiological remediation commingled with incidental munitions or hazardous materials
- Formally utilized sites remedial action program (FUSRAP)
- Landfill permitting, construction and operation
- Client relations from contract awards through task order closeout
- Multi-year contacts with USACE districts, waste disposal facilities, AFCEC bases and stations, medical facilities, USDOE projects and state authorities/agencies
The construction project manager is responsible for planning, coordinating, budgeting and supervising projects from the start to finish. Here are some responsibilities of the construction project manager:
- Put together the budget and negotiate cost estimates
- Arrange the work timetables
- Choose the most efficient construction method and strategies
- Stay in touch with clients for work or budget related issues
- Discuss technical and contract details with workers and other parties involved in the project
- Keep and eye on and oversee the personnel in construction onsite
- Cooperate with building and construction specialties
The construction project manager chooses the contract of the project as soon as the design is completed. The three most frequent methods for which a contractor is picked are: low-bid, selection, best-value selection and qualification-based selection. The primary functions of a construction manager are:
- Specification of the project goals and the plans including drawing of scope, scheduling, budgeting, deciding upon achievement requisites and choosing project participants.
- Boost of the resource effectiveness through the acquisition of the workforce and of necessary equipment
- Conduction of numerous operations through legitimate coordination and management of contracting, planning, estimating, design and construction during the whole project
- Efficient development of solid communication between the agents for resolving any conflicts that may arise
Everything starts with the project manager reaching out to contractors to ask for bids. Those who are interested in carrying out the project will offer a bid to the owner. The bid includes details about the amount of money the project owner has to offer for the project to be completed. An open bid is an auction where any contractor is welcome to make their offer and is normally openly promoted to the public. A closed bid is a private project where the project owner sends a bid invite to a specific number of contractors.
After receiving all of the bids for the project, then the owner selects the contractor by one of these three methods:
- Low-bid selection – the main focus is price and the project owner selects the lowest offer from the lowest bids that were presented
- Best value selection – the owner is choosing the bid on both quality and money
- Qualifications-based selection – qualifications are used as the only criterion and a request for qualifications (RFQ) helps the owner to acquire more information regarding the experience and project organization of the contractor
The type of contract has to be agreed upon before any construction can start on the project. There are four types of contract types to consider:
- Lump-sum – the most popular kind of agreement and a fixed price for the whole project is set by the owner and the contractor. The price remains the same even if the total cost of the project is proven to be higher or lower than the agreed amount.
- Unit price – when there are difficulties in deciding the final price in advance, this method is preferred. The project owner offers materials with a particular unit price in order to reduce spending
- Cost-plus fee – a cost plus fee contract is the best contract agreement for contractors. The project’s total cost, agreed fixed fee for the contractor and any other expenses that may have not been accounted for have to be covered by the owner after in the end
- Guaranteed maximum price – this is very similar to the cost-plus fee where the key difference is the maximum set price which can’t be surpassed
After the bidding process the project can start. Each project has a standard life cycle and all of the people involved must work together to make this happen.
Project Initiation is the first step where the objective and feasibility of the project is determined. This indicates whether the project is a good opportunity or not and a feasibility study is conducted if necessary. The results of this study will become the recommended plan for the project. Once the decisions are made, a project initiation document (PID) is created to provide the groundwork of the construction plan.
The project planning stage is when the team delegates the tasks, creates a strategy and plans the time, cost and resources to be used for the project. This is also known as scope management. A work breakdown structure (WBS) is a checklist that needs to be created that divides all of the necessary work into smaller categories. As soon as the budget, schedule and work have been assigned, the project is close to being able to start. The team should examine all of the potential threats for the project and come up with solid answers during the risk management step. Establishing a communications plan is necessary since it will be the means of relaying information between the project stakeholders.
In the execution phase, the construction project management plan is put to work and divided into two processes: executing and monitoring and controlling. The project team makes sure that the required tasks are being performed while progress is monitored and changes are being made accordingly.
The last stage of the project represents that is officially complete. The project manager evaluates the whole project from what worked to what might need improvement or any potential failures. The team will conduct a project report while calculating final budget and offering information about any tasks that remain unfinished. The project report and the analysis of potential failures are valuable feedback for future construction projects.
Having a reliable schedule can eliminate many risks that may come up during the project. The main goal of scheduling is to improve the allocation of materials and resources within a project. Any potential delays can be avoided and better communication between all of the parties can be guaranteed. Here are a few scheduling techniques a project manager could choose:
- Gantt charts – a Gantt chart can offer you an overview of a construction project and let you know about tasks that are left behind or being completed on time. This is one of the most practical systems that a project team can have at its disposal
- Line of balance scheduling – extremely useful method for repeated tasks such as meeting deadlines and assigning resources
- Critical path method – one of the most popular scheduling tools, it can contribute to the earlier or on time completion of your construction project
- Q-scheduling – allows project managers to put numerous, sometimes conflicting tasks in the right order. This scheduling method is becoming more well known
Defining your project’s budget is one of the most fundamental parameters that should be taken into consideration when you start to plan the construction project. Putting together the budget is one of the most challenging parts of a project and there are four basic parameters that the project manager should keep in mind:
- Analysis of the project – clarification of the different objectives and limitations for the project
- Estimation of the budget – organize your budget to work with your timeline and ask for bids from contractors who may be interested in the project
- Monitoring cost – start keeping an eye on project costs the minute construction starts. This allows you to identify any potential mistreatment of resources before they are all spent
- Accounting – the accounting team will collaborate with the project team for keeping all of the finances in order
One of the key details of a construction project are the legal parameters. A project manager should be prepared and always be ready to offer answers in any legal disputes. The whole project should be based on a strong foundation built up of budget, planning, legal and scheduling. The five legal areas that should be taken into consideration for a construction project are:
- Parties – anyone who is involved in the construction project. This can range from contractors to purchasers and consultants
- Contracts – need for any changes in the agreements
- Legislation & Regulation – all legislations and regulations are followed properly
- Procurement – the purchase of all the materials and services that are necessary for a construction project
- Insurance – project managers should be informed of any risk and be on top of details concerning the insurance agreements
BE3 develops and puts together site design activities including groundwater plume remediation, barrier and treatment wall placement and dispose cell construction. Our team is the liaison between the office design team and construction management team. We design build projects for waste disposal facilities and support activities including procedure development, critical lift planning, closure design drawings, facility permit application development operational support and material procurement.
The BE3 teams has the ability to plan and manage task orders on environmental projects nationwide, including: landfill permitting, construction and operation; client relations from contract award through task order closeout and formally utilized sites remedial action program (FUSRAP).
Putting together a construction project can be very challenging and requires the effort from everyone involved. All parameters should be thoroughly analyzed and trust built within your organization. BE3 Corp is here to help assist with your construction project management plans. Our team will use their expertise in the field to guarantee a smooth and effective construction project from start to finish while providing you guidance and design solutions for your environmentally impacted properties. Contact us today at 716-249-6880 or be3corp.com
Article adapted from: https://www.letsbuild.com/blog/construction-project-management-processes