Everyone knows how hard it is to run a construction project. You may feel burdened with a lot of heavy responsibilities – you need to keep to your schedule and budget and ensure that it meets the quality that the owner and other stakeholders are looking for.
While people have different ideas about quality, having a standard in construction is critical, especially when safety is at risk. Having a sound quality management system allows you to set standards for quality, keep track of it, and make any changes you need to meet those standards. As a result, you need to place the entire focus when it comes to ensuring quality is met at every stage of the project. It significantly affects the success of any project.
What Does Quality Control Mean in Construction?
Quality control is a management system that guarantees that the finished project meets the client’s standards and rules. This means finishing the project within the scope of work, time, and budget while ensuring high-quality craftsmanship and suitable materials are used. There are several ways to set your standards for quality – it can be by the client, government agencies, and policy and environmental guidelines.
Quality control ensures that a finished building will not crumble, renovated spaces will not have leaks or finishes that will not wear out quickly due to workmanship, and last for a long time. It is essential to instill the importance of quality in everyone in the company. Even though most companies have some quality control rules, not every company will go above and beyond the basics, and this might result in possibly worst-case scenarios.
In construction, there are two parts to quality: quality assurance (QA) and quality control (QC). Quality assurance tells quality management what to expect, how to achieve quality, and how to implement the process. The plan to get there is quality control.
Having good monitoring and tracking of your project will help you keep an eye on the quality of the work. Using construction project software can help you make the process more manageable.
Why You Should Prioritize Quality Control in Construction
You have worked hard to complete your project. However, it all comes down to one thing – if your client is unhappy, something in your project did not go well. Construction quality control should be prioritized since it can significantly improve customer satisfaction – a happy client will hire you again, boosting your company’s profitability. Also, if you do not have to redo work that should have been done right the first time, you save money and stay on schedule. This is also an excellent way to keep your crew’s spirits up, making them work harder.
Quality control is essential because it is the key to the success of your project. It affects everything that goes into building something. That means that everyone should always think about quality from the beginning of the project to the end. Poor quality can lead to problems that could have been avoided – like flaws, buildings that do not last, misunderstandings between the people involved, and many changes during construction. Also, cost control and quality control go hand in hand, making it less likely to make mistakes that cost a lot once construction starts.
Putting more attention on quality control can also make a project safer. Defects and failures cost a lot of money and can also be dangerous because trade partners may have to return to work in less-than-ideal conditions. Accidents can often be avoided if people pay attention to the details and try to do their work right the first time.
Helping Your Subcontractors Achieve Quality
Contractors and subcontractors go hand-in-hand whenever a project needs to be completed. Most of the time, subcontractors want the same things as you when working on a construction project: a quick, error-free finish, happy customers, and enough money.
The best way for you and your subcontractor to get back to making money and keeping customers happy is to help stop common problems from happening in the first place. Getting quality right the first time comes down to communication, openness, and improving quality control. Using construction management software for subcontractors can help everyone get access to updated information, communicate, and monitor everything that is going on in the project, down to the littlest detail.
The Five-Step Checklist to Ensuring High-Quality Projects
When working on quality control in construction, there must be a set of quality control procedures to follow. In this section, we have listed five steps to create an efficient quality control system.
Define Which Areas Have to Be Inspected
What areas of the project do you need to control the quality? Was the layout of the reinforcing bars correct? Or were the roof tiles appropriately aligned? Once a part of the project is defined and cleared, share the conclusion with your superintendents, crew, subcontractors, and anyone involved in the construction to ensure everyone is on the same page.
Plan Your Inspections
Check the finished work carefully to see if it meets your standards for acceptable quality. Make a plan for inspections to decide what will be checked and let the team know when. The person in charge of quality control and relevant parties, such as the subcontractor, should be present during the inspections.
Make A Checklist for Quality Control Items
Make a quality control checklist so that you can check everything and are less likely to miss something. Be specific. For example, does it have complete hinges and screws when inspecting a simple door installation? Was it appropriately aligned? A checklist ensures quality control is met and tells the crew what needs to be done.
Note All the Punch Lists
When a quality management inspection shows that a task does not meet the standards, the work must be reworked and fixed. Mark the work that needs to be fixed, fix the problem, and document the fix to ensure that it now meets your quality standards. A punch list should be given to the crew to discuss how to do the work before they start.
Review and Recheck the Work
The work is not done when you find a mistake and fix it, and it would be best if you made sure that the quality is up to standard. Review what happened and talk with your crew about how to keep it from happening again. No matter the answer, it should be shared with everyone on the construction crew to ensure the same problem doesn’t happen elsewhere. Project management software can help you monitor the progress and cascade information to the right people.
How Software Can Help You Make Your Quality Control Process More Efficient
If you want to improve the quality of your construction projects and have long-term business success, you will need a robust quality control system. Software for construction can help you efficiently and effectively perfect processes to ensure the project’s success. This section lists five ways to create an integrated quality control process with the help of software.
Accurate and Thorough Inspections
Inspections have come a long way from the old paper checklists. Preliminary inspections and comments that could be easier to read or understand used to be a problem. It would help if you planned how the data is stored, managed, and used. Papers get missed, lost, and mixed up. Most project managers now switch to apps and software to create inspection reports, where inspectors must follow a set order and ensure that all necessary inspection items are checked off.
Updated Photos for Documentation Purposes
Contractors have always taken pictures of problems, but mobile technology takes a couple of steps further. Top construction management software, like Pro Crew Schedule, lets you take photos from a mobile or tablet and upload them to the cloud. Notes can be written on the photo and shared with the stakeholders for comments.
Easily Generate Inspection Reports
With software, quality management data is available immediately for reports, so trends, the status of completion, and “punch list” items can be tracked in real-time. It is easier to find and keep track of missed inspections or pending open items which pose a significant risk to any project, and reports can show what actions need to be taken and when.
Updated Forms and Checklists
Paper inspection checklists can be hard to keep up to date, and it never works perfectly to remember old forms because someone, somewhere, is always using an old one. This process is made more accessible by software, where you can create automated lists and update their status with a few simple clicks.
To do an inspection, you have to look at, measure, test, document, and take pictures of work in different stages of a construction schedule. You may have to carry many things – from a clipboard, pens, or a camera. With construction technology, all this can be done on a phone or tablet, making it much more accessible and convenient.