Given the productivity issues that continue to plague capital projects, Owners and CMs have an opportunity to become more of an “interoperating” force that mandates the most efficient processes across project teams.
As holder of the project’s budget, the Owner unfortunately pays for every bit of waste created across the project’s team members. But holding the purse strings give Owners the ability to require more consultative training and guidance from their CMs. To begin, Owners and CMs should plan to create repeatable systems and processes. Recreating the wheel on every project just isn’t a good use of the Owner’s dollar.
Though the CM may fear that the establishment of repeatable best practices may decrease their contract size on the next project, they end up contributing to the long-term productivity of the industry, and their client. By leaving a legacy of best practice for the Owner, CMs are actually contributing back to the Owner’s budget, allowing the Owner to build more projects, resulting in more opportunities for the CM.
Three re-useable deliverables the CM can leave behind for the owner to carry forward on future projects include:
1. Efficient contract specifications
Contract specifications that drive efficiency include clear definitions of project roles, ownership of workflow steps, and timelines/communications required for documentation like change orders. Some progressive CMs also include definitions of and requirements for data delivery. This allows CMs to define reporting and communications guidelines that eliminate redundancy across multiple parties. Data delivery requirements may also define specific methods for sharing the information like schedules, submittals and close-out materials.
2. Technology recommendations that can be re-used across a program or portfolio of projects
As Construction Managers are typically engaged on a project by project basis, they have the opportunity to introduce their clients to new tools for improving project delivery. For example, tools that automate, track and enforce contractual requirements can easily be implemented on a single project and left behind to manage the client’s entire CIP program. The most efficient systems provide a single source for functional Construction Management, including cost control, document control, risk management, schedule integration, team communications, automated workflows and reporting. CMs may select tools that encourage adoption, can be accessed from any location, and accommodate unlimited users to support a collaborative culture where project information is accessible to anyone on the project or program when they need it.
3. Methodology for efficient communication structures that mitigate potential claims
Leveraging the CM’s expertise with past projects will allow them to provide a great level of insight into preventing claims for their client. Here are three practices that a seasoned CM will be able to deliver:
- Map project workflows directly to contractual requirements to make it easier for participants to be compliant.
- Set up workflow processes with alerts for actions required in your CM system to prevent missed deadlines.
- Capture all documents and communications from all project participants to create a complete project record. This record serves as the timeline of events and communications to evaluate and defend against claims should they occur.
To hear from a Facility Owner who has mandated technology for use across all projects in the Capital Program department, watch this webinar with Manager of the Capital Projects Division for City of Aurora, CO.