It’s widely known that a large number of construction projects fail. It’s the exception not the rule when a project goes to plan and is completed as designed. Budgets are more frequently overrun, schedules are pushed, milestones slip, and quality suffers. The projects may ultimately be completed, but they experience failure, delays, and changes throughout. It’s almost expected when launching a construction project that it will cost more and take longer than originally estimated.
Why is this?
As referenced previously on the Linarc Blog, three of the main reasons construction projects fail or fall short of their goals are:
- Inaccurate or Incomplete Plans
- Time Mismanagement
- Poor Team Management
Linarc helps construction teams address these in its upcoming Construction Management Software Solution. With it construction teams can mitigate a wide variety of inefficiencies and escalations before they ever happen. By using a well thought through tracking system you’ll naturally follow the protocols that will foster a well run project.
Let’s look closer at how Linarc assists with these three areas that frequently cause delays in construction projects .
1. Inaccurate or Incomplete Plans
Plans and plan management are essential to a successful construction project. The project plans and designs are the guiding source of everything that will be built. While architects are well adept at thinking through the entire design in advance, invariably construction teams and project managers will encounter different scenarios when out in the field. Plans are dynamic documents that may change, or need clarifications, throughout the course of the project. With teams in the field, offices, and across numerous companies, any changes and updates may be slow in finding their way to the hands of those that need them.
Linarc provides a centralized place to not only upload and view your construction project plans, but also mark them up, comment on them, or upload a revised version. Thus, everyone throughout the entire project always has the latest plans with current comments, all the time. For example, if the owner decides they no longer want to build a section of the building due to budget concerns, the architect can remove that section, and roll out the revised version of the plans to everyone on the construction crew. Project leaders will know right away that the design has been changed, and their teams will be notified accordingly. The newer plans will be the first version they encounter, so they won’t accidentally reach for the outdated versions.
Take this in contrast to how projects work without automated plan management. If the owner makes a change, the responsibility to let everyone on the project know about it falls on specific individuals. They need to get a revised copy of the plans out to everyone on the project. Some key stakeholders won’t be as organized as others and may continue to reference the previous plans longer than intended. And even if they do get the right plans, they have no practical way to see all the markups notes and comments by project leaders. Not only do the plans need to be rolled out for every revision, but every time the architects and project managers leave comments on them too. Manually managing plans is only feasible for smaller projects where there are fewer changes, and fewer contractors on the entire project.
2. Time Mismanagement
The next way Linarc’s Construction Project Management Software helps keep build projects on track is with its advanced time management and scheduling tools. At the heart of every project is a well thought out and organized schedule. As outlined in detail in our article Building a Reliable Construction Schedule, we note how to use Linarc to employ the Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) method to define your schedule. With WBS, each task of the project is broken down into subtasks, and then more tasks, until you have manageable sections of work to be completed. Each of these sections of work has a budget associated with it, and a schedule. In fact Linarc tracks both the expected budget and schedule, and the actual results. That way if the project starts early and runs late, it will be noted in the system and reflected to all.
Without an advanced Construction Project Scheduler like Linarc, any variations in the budget can quickly begin to compound on each other and cause entire projects to get out of sync. By having a centralized time tracking system that’s constantly updated with the current status, teams will know right away if their section of work is on schedule, ahead of schedule, or delayed a bit.
The Master View allows you to see the calendar in multiple views so project managers can have complete visibility into the tasks to be accomplished.
- Outline view, which is a sequential list of the tasks that need to be completed, listed in the order they need to be completed. This is a great starting point and tells you exactly what needs to be completed right now.
- Tree view, which is a high level view of every task on the project and how they relate to other tasks. This is helpful for visualizing the scope of the project, and each of its subtasks.
- Gantt chart, which includes the construction project phases on a timeline and their respective subtasks. Gantt charts are the most helpful for time management as they put all tasks on a timeline in the order they need to be completed. They show each predecessor, subsequent, and concurrent task so you have complete visibility in your project’s schedule, and its expected timeline.
In contrast, using time management tools that are not designed specifically for construction management may not be detailed enough to meet the comprehensive time management needs of a construction project. Construction projects comprise a multitude of teams and crew across a variety of companies. Linarc unites them all under one cohesive system so they can operate as a single company. Its permission system gives each the level of access and visibility they need for the part of the project they contribute to. In doing so, everyone on the project will stay united and on a cohesive schedule that fluidly integrates each team and task.
3. Poor Team Management
At the end of the day, it takes the right team and crew to build your construction project. While Linarc isn’t a tool to manage the hiring process, it helps greatly with employee and expectation management. Clear communication is key to keeping your project on track. As previously discussed, robust plan management and industry leading schedule planning are two of the core fundamentals to successful team management. Linarc Construction Management Software helps with every critical aspect of managing your employees and contractors.
- Each company contact, whether employee, contractor, or vendor can be added and given the appropriate amount of access for the part of the project they’re working on. Linarc’s use of permissions and hierarchy system give each member the granularity of task assignment and project visibility they need to get the job done.
- All types of work orders can be managed and tracked including Change Orders, RFIs, Punchlists, and Submittals. These are essential for keeping the project on its original plan, and tracking when alterations are made.
- Equipment & Materials management are essential for managing your team as well. Without the right tools and materials to complete their parts of the project, they have no chance of being successful. Linarc provides resource and material tracking tools that make it easy to manage and track. Getting all teams their tools and resources on time goes hand in hand with great project management.
Among the best ways that Linarc helps with team management is with contextually relevant communication. If you’re looking at an RFI or Punchlist while viewing Linarc, people you communicate with will be able to see what you’re referring to. You don’t need to send files separately when communicating with Linarc. This saves time and removes any confusion while conveying key details about the project. It makes it much easier for all involved to stay in sync with each other.
While some projects can be finished to successful completion without overarching construction management software, using a dedicated construction management software tool like Linarc gives you an edge in managing your project and keeping it on track.
Three ways it does so is by complete plan management, best-in-class time management, and well designed people and resource management. By adding one’s project and all its personnel and resources, you can be sure that your construction project is poised for successful completion.