Streamlining Construction Workflow

by Brian Frederick
March 13, 2018

Work smarter, not harder

In construction, like most industries, efficiency is the name of the game. And while there’s something to be said for a hard day’s work, elbow grease is no replacement for efficiency and labor maximization. Think about it: you could bust your butt all day digging a hole with a shovel, but mini-excavator could do a better job in a matter of minutes. It’s not working harder, it’s working smarter.

The key to getting things done in a timely and cost-effective manner is working smart and efficiently. Here are some strategies to help you maximize every aspect of your business, streamlining workflow and getting more done in less time:

Prioritize communication

A study by the Project Management Institute reported that 56% of the risk involved in construction projects in the US boils down to one issue: ineffective communication. Despite the fact that this is the primary contributor to job failure one-third of the time, many companies don’t prioritize communication, often because they don’t know how.

To eliminate misunderstandings between stakeholders, companies need to find ways to close the communications gap. This means speaking a common language and tailoring communications to different groups. Acknowledge the importance of project management and develop standardized practices. Develop and implement a solution that includes benchmark reporting and performance indicators that identify deliverables and highlight tasks that are behind schedule.

Keep planning

Planning is a huge part of efficient workflow. Design, pre-construction and procurement all require extensive planning, including multiple revisions, but it’s also important once a job is underway.

All sorts of things can happen during a build, and a successful manager will incorporate changing circumstances into plans as they happen. You’ll need to adjust timelines and refine plans as delays caused by shipping delays, labor shortages or equipment failures arise. Planning is never truly done on any jobsite.

Maximize delivery

Everyone in the industry knows the frustration of waiting for materials or equipment to show up. Luckily modern technology is helping provide a solution to this problem. Use GPS to track deliveries and set up geofences to receive notification when a delivery is inbound. This keeps you from wasting your crew’s time waiting around for a truck that’s stuck in traffic or was sent to the wrong place.

Streamline work orders

One of the biggest reasons for project delays, and the costs associated with them, is equipment downtime. A study by Information Technology Intelligence Consulting found that for 98% of companies, a single hour of downtime costs over $100,000. Make sure every asset in your fleet is up and running as quick as possible by using a digital work order systems like the one offered by ES Track.

From a single dashboard, fleet managers and operators can identify work that needs to be done and assign it to a field technician. The tech takes all the necessary parts and tools before leaving the shop, and drives directly to the asset using real-time GPS. By eliminating poor or incomplete communication about machine status and the game of hide-and-seek often required to find jobs on big sites, the entire service and maintenance process is maximized. And this means less downtime and greater overall efficiency.

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