For a construction project to be successful, it all comes down to one factor—the abilities of the project manager.
If you’ve just been hired as a manager for a large (or small) construction project, there can be a lot of pressure to deliver. How can you get the job done on time, under budget, and in a way that will impress your clients and supervisors?
While it’s a tough job, it’s much easier if you know a few tips. To learn more, keep reading to find eight key tips that can help you successfully manage a construction project.
Safety Should Always Be Your Number One Construction Site Priority
As a construction project manager, safety should always be your focus. Without a safe work site, nothing can be done—keeping in mind that any accidents or injuries can also delay your project and cause serious delays and expenses.
Keep your site clean and safe, with regular OH&S training sessions for workers. This can help create a culture of safety, where workers value the importance of cleaning up each night, following the rules, and doing the right thing.
When you’re in charge of a huge project, it’s physically impossible for you to make every decision that needs to be made. If you try to micromanage everything, you’re likely to end up stressed and exhausted.
Make life easier on yourself by delegating certain responsibilities to people you trust. If you have a handful of experienced workers or managers who understand what needs to be done, this can help reduce some of your stress.
You’re not giving up control—rather, you’re trusting others to make the right decision on your behalf. Just be sure to properly train the person you elevate into this role, so you can be sure they have the confidence and ability to make the right decisions.
Manage Your Budget Closely
Pay close attention to your expenses if you want to keep your project on track. Even though construction projects can be hugely expensive, that doesn’t mean money doesn’t matter—your client is going to be very unhappy if project costs balloon past what you’ve estimated.
Make your job simpler by using project management tools to enter and code each expense type. Then, take time each week to sit down and review your finances, cutting costs if necessary.
You can also provide financials in your weekly project update to your client, as this will give them reassurance that everything is on track.
Construction projects often a have a large amount of stakeholders, including the client, workers, consultants, and suppliers. For the job to run smoothly, everyone needs to be clear about what’s expected of them and where they need to be at what time.
Frequent, thorough communication is key to keeping everyone happy and preventing any errors caused by miscommunication. Always communicate clearly with everyone involved—morning briefings for all workers can help with this.
If something does go wrong, or a mistake is made, be honest with your client and let them know right away—honesty is always the best policy.
Hire the Right People
Hiring the right staff can make a huge impact when it comes to completing the construction to the highest standard. For example, does your job site need a civil or a structural engineer—and do you know the difference?
You not only need to hire people with the right skills, but also with the right mindset. Look for experienced and reliable workers who team players and will come to work with a can-do, positive attitude each day.
Build Extra Time Into Your Schedule
One of our top construction management tips is to always include a buffer in your scheduling timeline. No matter how organized you are, delays can happen—due to weather, shipping delays, or problems with permits.
Build a buffer into your schedule to account for any unplanned delays, as this will help you complete your project on time—which is sure to impress your clients.
Acknowledge Great Work
Promoting positivity in your worksite can be fantastic for employee morale—keeping workers motivated, happy, and supported. A happy job site means lower employee turnover, which can be a huge problem in the construction industry.
Grow gratitude, acknowledge a job well done, and smile–it can go a long way! Good workers can be hard to come by, so make them feel valued and appreciated.
Don’t Completely Outsource Oversight
As the site manager, you don’t want to completely outsource all of the site supervision. While delegation is important, you’re ultimately responsible for the project, so if it fails, you’ll be blamed.
Take time each day to walk around the site, check progress, and chat with workers. This can allow you to catch small problems before they become big ones.
A supervisor should be on the job location—not spend all of their time tucked away in an office.
Use These Tips to Complete Your Construction Project to the Highest Standard
While it’s not easy to manage a large construction project, the tips above are sure to help. You can use them to develop a management strategy, allowing you to complete the project on time.
The secret to achieving everything above is organization. An organized project manager will have the time, resources, and energy to get everything done each day, so develop a detailed project management plan to get started.
That way, your latest construction project is sure to be a success!
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