Guide to Project Management for Contractors

Industry background is necessary as each industry has its own intricacies and language but at the core of project management is information management.

Duane C Barney

Project Management: Whether you are in Event Planning or Construction, IT, etc. …The Process is the Same.

  • Review and understand the contract requirements

In contract management, you need to understand the legal rules of the road so you can ensure as you move forward the information and requirements you are imparting to others match those that have been agreed to. You are gathering the legal information, so it can be passed on as you buy out and execute to the contract.

  • Review and understand the scope of work

This is critical. Study, study, study. Know the project from every angle, how every piece fits together, almost literally. For a mental image of the finished projects, walk through the bathrooms, around the exterior, and visualize the swimming pool, the fireplace, and appliances in place. This mental image is critical for quick recognition to verify verbal and written instructions which are sometimes contrary to the architectural plans. If you can’t get a clear picture, go back to the architect for clarification, and make sure it is clear. If you can’t pull the picture together no one else on the team will be able to do it either.

  • Develop a schedule to execute the work

Now you know what you are building, it is time to build the map to your destination. That is what your schedule is a project management roadmap. Roads may close, the weather may delay you and detours will need to be found. Look back at the map and find a clear alternative route. Review this in detail with your execution team for any new ideas, or conflicts so every member of the team is headed in the same direction, together

Buy out the necessary trades to implement the work.

Now you have gathered the SOW and mapped out a plan you can buy out the job, you have gathered information now you will divide up the work required for execution. The contract information will keep your subcontracts aligned with the owner agreement. The S.O.W. will direct the trade requirements and the schedule will drive your timing to have the subcontractors ready to go.

just gather information and pass it along

This is really so simple, just gather information and pass it along. Of course, someone or something will always throw a wrench in the plan. Now the information you gathered becomes a building block. As changes occur, the problems need to be identified, solutions devised, and the information required to execute will need to be passed on the those impacted. Just follow the moving target and keep all the money and payments in order and it will build itself.

Gather the information and pass it on to those who need it, rinse, repeat. It’s simple project management. Of course, I have simplified it a bit, but that sums it up. Gather information and pass it on and keep in mind that all information for execution passes through project management. You are either the funnel through which all information smoothly flows or the cork in the bottle. Manage the information smoothly.

Tip: There are new programs for builders like CoConstruct and they are invaluable to executing the smooth flow of information from the first lead call to warranty. Check them out and find one that works for you and implement it into your operation.

If you need help with project management skills, give me a call today to schedule a consultation for business coaching from a construction industry expert.