The construction industry often faces challenges and obstacles when dealing with project budgets and schedules. Luckily, there are a number of methods and tools available that can help site supervisors, business owners, and project managers avoid cost and timeline overruns. The project cost-saving tips we’re going to highlight are:
A survey conducted by IDC revealed that about 75% of project owners report overruns in both budgeting and scheduling in North America. Project owners also report an average of 6 budget increases and 5 schedule changes per project which result in an average cost increase of 15%. Clearly, staying within budget and on schedule is one of the most challenging problems in construction.
Software and technology are changing several industries. While the construction industry might be considered slower in adopting these new tools, that’s starting to shift. The problem that needs to be addressed is the often misuse of these software tools. Many project owners will use general productivity software tools that are used across several industries instead of specialized construction specific software. It is important to use industry specific technology because it will allow project owners to get ahead and better predict budgets. And oftentimes, industry specific technologies are developed by those who faced the same pain points and were developed by those originally in the industry, or are based on specific case studies. This helps allow for easier adoption, better service, and an overall better experience. Here are some of the most widely used construction technologies:
What is data centralization? Data centralization essentially means that the entire team is working with the same information and data. Examples of these would be enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems, customer management software (CMS), or any other tools that help consolidate useful information that is accessible to everyone. This results in less miscommunication and increased productivity as it creates a source-of-truth of information as well as more efficiency in the long run. Centralized databases can also produce more meaningful reports and forecasts for projects and provide you with visuals and real-time information about budgets and timelines.
BIM is a software tool that integrates structured, multi-disciplinary data to produce a digital representation of an asset across its lifecycle, from planning and designing to construction and operations. With this kind of tool, project managers can mitigate risk and reduce cost because they can better visualize projects during pre-construction and have an accurate model based cost estimation. BIM is becoming increasingly popular because of its dependency and ability to allow project owners the ability to set realistic budgets that can be met.
All of the software tools mentioned above can greatly increase productivity and avoid budget overruns but they will not be as effective if an organization can not properly communicate with each other. Hold meetings with the crew, report the valuable data and be sure that everyone is on the same page. Using technology like drones and iPads on the jobsite can also help with sharing information with those who are on-site. Project plans are not always readily available to the site crew and it can help if they were more accessible to the team. When an entire crew is visualizing the same outcome for a project and unified in the goal, there is a great chance that the project will be successful. Communicating timelines and project details my be cliche, but it is still one of the most effective way to keep a project within budget. All that has changed is how they are communicated.
One of the biggest reasons for budget overruns is rushed planning processes that don’t help the crew understand what the project needs to look like and how it will be carried out. The entire process, including what equipment will be needed and how much it will cost should be considered upfront by all managing parties including site supervisors, project managers, and business owners. Even one change that wasn’t planned for can result in extra costs that dramatically change the overall project budget. Although it is tempting to start executing the project as soon as possible, a thorough planning process can save weeks or even months of time as well as several unnecessary costs.
Integrating these practices into your project planning process can save both time and money which will result in more profit and happier clients. Construction software tools are continually enhancing the industry so it is important to become familiar with them in order to stay ahead of your competition.
Here at DOZR, we provide another cost-saving approach to project management in making sure you’re finding heavy equipment at transparent prices. We also ensure we can deliver this equipment on short notice. If that’s a common pain point for you, check out the DOZR rent page for the full list of available equipment. We know budgeting and planning is one of the hardest parts of running a construction project. Allow us to help you stay within your budget for every project.