The construction industry is well-known for its project management and communication problems. Issues in a project can already lead to cash flow problems and ruin the reputation of the company.
We listed the most common issues along with potential solutions to address them with the help of digital software and modern tools.
Effective communication is essential for successful project management, as it helps to ensure that everyone is on the same page and working towards the same goals. However, communication breakdowns can easily occur due to a variety of factors, such as lack of clarity or transparency.
Solution: To improve communication, it’s important to establish common channels of communication to ensure that all relevant parties are up-to-date. Even though email and phone are good tools in many cases, in a long project with multiple stakeholders, information can easily get lost and miscommunication happens.
One good option is to manage all communication between stakeholders with a specialised construction collaboration or construction management software solution. Now, all communication and project information can be found in a central place, which saves time by not having to do constant status checks via email or phone.
Unclear project overview
Construction projects involve many stakeholders, various stages and many different documents and tasks. At the same time, projects take a long time to complete and big changes happen frequently. In the worst case, not having a good overview of the project can lead to delays, risks and financial issues.
Solution: Managing projects in a spreadsheet can solve some issues but can easily become a part of the problem as spreadsheets get outdated fast. However, modern construction management software can bring everything together. Using the right software, the project’s stakeholders, tasks, documents and schedule can be managed in one place, giving a good overview on the project and presenting the next steps clearly. Things that are not going forward as planned can be easily spotted.
One of the most important things for the project manager is to keep the project within budget. However, budgets can grow because of various factors, such as underestimated costs, poor planning, and bigger cost changes in the market.
Solution: In some cases, budget overruns are impossible to avoid. Nevertheless, automating parts of the project financial monitoring will help project managers spot and react to budget overruns before the situation gets out of control. Many construction management tools provide financial tools to help project managers with budgeting and tracking. Keep this in mind when choosing the tools.
Delays occur for various reasons, including unexpected events, supply chain disruptions, or issues with subcontractors. Often, delays are related to communication problems.
Solution: With modern scheduling tools you can bring the needed flexibility to your schedules and monitor them easily. Big schedule changes will be automatically noticed and the schedule can be edited if needed. Many construction management software solutions offer built-in scheduling tools and it is recommended to keep everything within the same software solution if possible.
Quality issues and risk management
Construction projects come with a variety of risks, such as safety hazards, legal issues, and financial risks. Poor-quality work can lead to costly rework, delays, and damage to the company’s reputation.
Solution: To ensure high-quality work, it’s important to have clear specifications and standards in place, as well as a process for quality control. One of the best ways to ensure quality is to have a common operating model / playbook in place.
When everyone is following the common model:
- All the stakeholders can collaborate more easily
- Everyone will know their responsibilities and the deadlines are clear
- Quality standards are written down and easy to follow
- Possible risks can be taken care in advance
In time, the model will improve and possible risk situations can be taken into account in future projects.
Many critical and expensive mistakes can be avoided with transparent and well-operated project management. The good thing about project management nowadays is that the market offers multiple good solutions that can support any professional in that field. Modern construction management tools are essential to ensure successful projects and happy customers.
Toni wants to help construction companies take advantage of the opportunities brought by digitalization. He is interested in understanding how the industry works and is always ready to talk about technologies in the industry.