The construction industry is constantly growing and facing many problems simultaneously. As a result, project managers need help to keep up and solve them.
Many things could go wrong with a building project. Project managers juggle a million moving parts to ensure a site runs smoothly, safely, on time, and within budget. You may undoubtedly find yourself running around, needing help to keep track of everything to prevent unnecessary roadblocks from popping up and becoming more significant problems.
Luckily, there are also different ways to deal with construction problems, whether communication, scheduling, document, or crew management problems. But before we go into this, let us talk about some of the most critical issues in the construction industry. So, what is causing these delays and problems with the budget, and what can project managers do to get ready?
Biggest Challenges in The Construction Industry
The construction industry is prone to problems, and a rise in the market has kept them from disappearing. A project manager’s job is to ensure everything runs smoothly to deliver on time, within budget constraints, and of the best quality possible. Whether it is a delay due to inclement weather, lack of workers, or even document mismanagement, it is essential to deal with it immediately so it will have a manageable impact on the project’s overall progress.
Let us take a look at some of the common problems that construction managers are facing today.
Compliances with Regulations and Ordinances
The world is changing quickly, as are the building rules and laws. Many laws and regulations affect construction differently, and ensuring that your project complies with them is critical. Yes, it is a lot to keep up with, and it is easy to miss a notice about a new rule or a change to the current laws. When that happens, you can finish a project only to find out that you just wasted tens of thousands of dollars because you have to go back and fix the problem.
Limited Skilled Workforce
Another one of the biggest problems is that more skilled workers are needed to meet the market’s growing demand. And this one gets worse yearly, too, because fewer young people want to work in construction, and more older workers are getting close to retirement age. Demand keeps rising, but only a few people are qualified to work in construction.
One standard option is to work with various subcontractors to do a specific scope of work. Another is to take on mentoring work or apprenticeships to people with little or no work experience and skilled workers who already have jobs. This lets more potential employees be hired.
Delays in Completion
One of the biggest worries of a homeowner is that the project will be done as soon as possible without compromising its quality. As stated earlier, it can be due to something unpredictable, like the weather – or it might be something that could be easily prevented, like miscommunication.
The construction contract should include a construction milestone schedule which you can use to track the project’s progress. Milestones are like checkpoints – you can use them to check them against what is happening with the project. You need to know the reasons why the project might be late. But delays should be taken care of immediately, and the homeowner and the contractor should talk directly.
Poor Communication and Collaboration Between Teams
The success of a project, regardless of its industry, depends on how well people talk to each other. You must collaborate and communicate with various teams to ensure each activity is done on time. Miscommunication is often the root cause when things go wrong with a project. Because construction technology, such as software, is becoming more common, people have access to information about how the project is going and what is happening in real-time. It is one way to reduce slowdowns and speed up the bumps when communication breaks down.
Unorganized Workflows and Tasks
A project manager must make decisions and set up various processes that fit the project plan’s schedule. This ensures that everything is done right – for example, each task is done in the correct sequence. But if the project’s management is struggling to keep up with the speed and size of demand, it could be a big problem. People managing the construction project should have the right skills to ensure everything is streamlined and organized.
Financial and Budget Problems
You may have to pay employees, vendors, renters of equipment, and suppliers, but the money you owe is due when the project is done. As the contractor, you need enough money to deal with this problem. Getting an open line of credit for your business will help you pay these bills and keep your good name.
Scheduling Management Problems
Scheduling is one of the most frustrating problems that have come up in construction so far. Some subcontractors can’t be on the site simultaneously, or there could be work conflicts or injuries. Even if everyone agrees on a date and time in advance, someone will always have a conflict or call you to say they cannot make it.
Another example is when a supply chain has stopped necessary building materials from getting to the site. Some days, everyone can get to work on time but cannot finish the task since they need specific materials or equipment. This is where an efficient construction time management system should be in place.
Resistance to Adapting Construction Technology
For decades, technology has been a big part of the construction business. Even though it sounds good, one of the biggest problems in the industry is that most people need to be faster to adapt to changes in internal operations when using construction technology.
As a business owner, you can only spend thousands of dollars on new software, thinking it might help your organization in the long run. While construction software can offer powerful, easy-to-use features, it will only be worthwhile if your crew and staff can utilize their property.
Missing Documents and Paperwork
It is not surprising that construction usually involves a lot of paperwork – given its scope, size, and complexity. A project manager must keep track of many documents, such as contracts, receipts, insurance certificates, materials orders, etc. Having to deal with that regularly slows down document management and makes mistakes more likely. Luckily, many systems and solutions can help manage documents in many ways, like sorting, due dates, project deadlines, and more. You can now get access to updated information with just a simple click.
Irregular Inventory and Equipment Management
To be more specific, many companies often need to remember construction equipment costs, such as maintenance and replacement costs. Managing construction inventory and equipment is another cost driver, especially when replacing some resources. You must keep a close eye on your inventory and equipment levels to ensure that you have the right resources on-site whenever you need them.
How Construction Software Can Help You Manage Project to Success
Construction is a highly complex business involving dozens or even hundreds of people. Some of the construction industry’s problems have been around long, while others have only worsened in the last few years. The good news is that many ways to fix our construction problems exist – one way to do so is through construction software. Even though people have been building things for thousands of years without software, technology has given contractors a way to make building faster, easier, safer, and more profitable.
Construction management software tries to solve problems that managers of all types of construction have in common. You can benefit from centralization, billing, on-site development, managing resources, and getting real-time information. Let us look at how software can help you lead your project to success.
As stated earlier, construction projects involve many people, such as construction workers, plumbers, masons, contractors, architects, and project managers. Each one has a long list of things and tasks they need to do to finish a project. No matter how big or small the information, construction software helps put it all together. Everyone can get a clear picture of everything that is going on with the project.
Billing and Invoicing
Billing and invoicing are one way for contractors to get paid for the work they have completed. However, sending out billings and invoicing is easier said than done – you need a designated team member to work on the project and ensure that accounts receivable and payable are in order, that there are tickets or invoices to prove transactions, and more. Construction technology helps you quickly go through all the documents and numbers, ask team members to upload their information and collect and send payments.
Daily Project Reports
On-site workers are the best people to ask about the day-to-day progress of your building project. Using construction software gives construction workers an excellent platform to share ideas or problems easily and quickly. They can quickly grab their phones, take a picture of the problem, upload it to the platform, and share it with their boss.
Project managers need a complete picture of what resources they have and do not have to plan out the activities or tasks that can be done for the day. In this case, it can significantly affect the project’s schedule when you need the materials or even the crew on site. Construction software gives project managers a clear picture of which resources are being used, when, and where.
Updated, Real-Time Information
With today’s digital advancements, the internet and the cloud have enabled software to work together in real time. It lets everyone access the most up-to-date files and even sees the changes as soon as they are made. As a result, stakeholders can make sound business decisions for the benefit of the project.