A Brief Introduction to Construction Project Management

Construction management is a broader concept that deals with various aspects from project conceptualization to completion. It includes project scope, planning, assessing project risks, organizing multiple activities, controlling initiatives, scheduling, and implementing effective strategies and tools to achieve repeatable success throughout the system. There is an essential link between clients’ expectations and acceptance of a completed project. A project management company is supposed to ensure an uninterrupted and smooth transfer of a project from the design process to the completion of a project.

A project life cycle involves four stages which include planning, execution, and delivery. Project stages play a critical role in providing better control and management. A project usually starts gradually, touches the peak and then declines to final delivery of the project to the client. What follows are some of the basic construction project management activities:

Resourcing

A project manager can use bar charts to resource the project. This simple way of resourcing can help plan a logical breakdown of activities for the project and the expected time required to complete these activities. Each activity demands a different set of resources which needs to be identified. Materials, labor, subcontractor, and equipment are some of the fundamental resources required to carry out a construction project. We can adjust the chart bar by moving different activities back and forth in time to reduce the quantity of a resource required to streamline the requirements for that resource.

Material Ordering

The bar chart can help a contractor identify when a material is needed for a project and order it accordingly. Delivering a project on time is of supreme significance. Therefore, it is important to consider the delivery time when a material is ordered. This systematic approach reduces storage costs and decreases the chances of spoiling, shrinkage, and a material being damaged.

Contingency plan

Some projects can get complicated as not everything on site goes as per planning or expectations. Events like heavy rain, injuries, and absence of employees due to sickness can affect the flow of work leading to delays and pressure on the managers. The inclusion of an appropriate amount of slack time can allow a contractor to deal with contingencies. Slack time or float can be treated as a separate activity. However, float is often included in the activities themselves, adding more time than anticipated to get the work done.

Risk management

Construction is a complicated and challenging process which drives contractors to interpret and ensure compliance with codes, laws, regulations, etc. Communication and coordination among stakeholders may highlight differing interests, purposes, and expectations. Risk, therefore, should be considered as an important component of a project.