How to ensure your construction project costs don’t spiral out of control

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In any industry, cost management is the most essential part of any project. You can have the best people on the job, but the project will not be completed if you run out of money. The team responsible for cost management needs the project to be delivered on budget, on time, and without hassle. Below we explain how easy it is to ensure your construction project costs stay manageable.

Choose the right management software for your construction project

Cost management has been made a lot easier thanks to technological advancements. In recent years, remarkable developments have seen companies utilize project management software to help manage your construction project costs. Project stakeholders need a system to communicate, collaborate, and share data and documents throughout the entire project lifecycle and between separate companies’ instances. Collaboration is improved through effective construction project management workflow, and all stakeholders can keep track of project status and documents. From one application to another, from one company to another, and from one phase to another, workflows should be carried over.

Select the correct project materials

When ordering materials for your project, you must also choose the right ones. Getting your order in on time can ensure a project’s completion on time, eliminating unexpected costs. Delays can also result in delayed claims that require a skilled construction lawyer to resolve. Be aware of what materials may have an extended lead time in advance so you can plan your project accordingly. The following factors should be considered when selecting materials: cost, durability, quality, availability, delivery timelines, and compatibility.

Sometimes, you can even test materials ahead of time, especially if you are using a new supplier. Then, if the need arises, you will have alternatives. Remember, cheaper doesn’t always mean better, but you don’t always have to sacrifice quality. Work together to find suitable materials for the right price.

Plan for Unexpected Changes

Poorly planned projects can be derailed before they even start, resulting in wasted costs and time. Be sure to accomplish what needs to be done before the last minute. For instance, it may take longer to get permits when many construction projects are underway. Legal trouble can arise from failure to obtain the proper licenses, so ensure you have done your research thoroughly and are set to embark on your project. Otherwise, the legal fees will add up, but the contracts will still stand, meaning you are paying workers for not working in some cases. Work with the specific teams on the project to gain the special licenses as early as possible so that the project will be completed on time. To determine everyone’s unique timetable, schedule time to communicate with everyone from the designer to the engineer to the subcontractors. 

Here are some tips for planning for the unexpected in the following ways:

  • Transparency: ensure teams are transparent with each other about the costs and timings
  • Identify: try to utilize your team’s experience and learn from possible past mistakes so you are one step ahead of any issues that may arise.
  • Budget: always have a little extra budget. In the construction industry, unexpected materials can always affect. 
  • Cut off: for intentional changes, set a deadline. Therefore, once everything is agreed upon, no people interrupt and interfere. This would only delay the project.
  • Analyze: keep meeting notes when you have meetings, document them, and find ways to minimize, eliminate, and accommodate them on your next project

Limit travel times for meetings

While every project requires communication, only some issues that arise need to be a meeting. Sometimes you will have Managers and workers dotted in different parts of the country. If this is the case, you need to resist the temptation to set up a meeting unless there is the scope that it can be a phone call or done online. Many companies would be tempted (and quite rightly) to charge for extra travel time and time taken when everyone always wants a meeting. Picking up the phone can solve many issues, and you don’t want to gain a reputation for calling meetings that ‘could have been an email’. 

Communicate with each other

Effectively, the overall theme for ensuring construction projects do not spiral out of control is communicating with each other. The majority of issues that could result in rising costs can usually be solved by just picking up the phone. It really can!

So consider that as the most essential part of completing your construction project, as well as finding the right project management software to help streamline the process. If you can automate it, you should. It does help to eliminate human error which can be easily avoided.