Saturday, February 7, 2015

The Build Process - Project Control Cycle Components - Part 3

The project control cycle applies just as readily to activities such as demolition, installation of  plumbing fixtures, floor and wall tile, and painting as it does to the suppliers who are providing the materials and products used to build your renovation. Your project’s success, and especially for a seemingly small one like a bathroom, needs to follow a Project Control Cycle  because one small deviation can have a significant impact on the progress of the work.
Here is a more detailed explanation for each of the Project Control Cycle components.

Set Initial Goals

The first task in the project cycle is to set goals for each of the activities. This step needs to be completed before the job is awarded to the contractor to do the work.  Many of the goals you are required to identify are the project pricing, materials selected, and the completion of the contract documents such as the detailed working drawings, scope of work and specifications.
The pricing allows you to arrive at an initial cost for the project. The working drawings, scope of work, and specifications identify who is going to do the work, where it’s going to be done, what materials are to be used, and how long the project will take. Simply put, the budget for the construction should not exceed the costs anticipated in the estimate nor can the time planned in a schedule exceed the number of days permitted.
Why? Under the terms of the contract, expectations for the budget and schedule are clearly disclosed.
It is important these initial goals are established and agreed to in writing before any work starts. Knowing what these goals are allows you to measure the project’s progress enabling you to address issues in a proactive rather than a reactive manner. So if your scope of work outlines a task needs to be completed in 1 day, and 3 days later the task is still not complete, the damage this delay causes to the project becomes extremely evident, especially if it’s the early stages, such as the site preparation activity.
Establish Job Plans
Establishing your project’s Job Plan is a three step process.  
First, the job is broken down into its composite parts or activities.  
The second step is to plan and optimize the activity for maximum efficiency.  For example, some of the activities may be Site Preparation, Demolition, Mechanical Rough-in, Framing, etc..
Lastly, with the activities identified, these are then strung together in a realistic order of work.  This order of work is converted into a diagram and calculations are applied to determine at what time and on what dates the activity should take place.  
The result is a plan you can use as a guide for all of those involved with building the job. The job plan is used to effectively cope with the inevitable changes that will occur.
Monitor Progress
Monitoring progress of the project is a two step process.  
The first part is carried out on the job site at regular intervals and involves monitoring the actual events occurring. This may happen once or twice a day, typically being at the beginning and half way through the day.  The purpose of this monitoring activity is to determine who is on site and/or confirm if the materials have arrived or are available for the work scheduled.
The information gathered from the monitoring activity is compared to the working drawings to confirm the work is being done to meet the design developed. The specifications are consulted to ensure the correct materials delivered are those purchased. Jobsite health and safety practices and standards are important, and the trades doing the work are observed to confirm they are meeting those standards.
The second step of the process is to monitor the schedule, or schedule monitoring as it’s called, and this is done on an activity by activity basis to measure if: the work starts on time, is performed within the time allocated, and is completed according to the schedule.  Schedule monitoring is done at all stages of construction, from set-up to the final cleaning. This includes the performance of all of the required inspections too.
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