Proper Planning Keeps Construction Projects Moving Forward


A construction project could easily become derailed before ground breaks without the proper planning in place. The potential for project delays, overruns, and unhappy customers exponentially increases if proper planning is overlooked or compromised. Here are some tips to implement before your next construction project.

Before creating the plan, meet face to face with your customer to go over the goals of the project and to ensure you are both in alignment. This includes reviewing blueprints and architectural drawings, answering any questions, and addressing any issues the client may have.

Build a Solid Foundation

A construction project plan should include:

  • Scope of the project, which is basically a description of the project, all deliverables, and project milestones. This will guide the entire project and its different phases and should be agreed upon by all stakeholders involved.
  • Overall budget with cost estimates. The budget is a critical component in realizing the project scope, as it determines the type of materials required, which subcontractors must be hired, and where the construction will take place. Be sure to take into consideration rising labor, material, and fuel costs, particularly in today’s environment. Have a contingency plan in place to cover additional costs.
  • A schedule with start and finish dates for each of the different portions of the project so that it is completed on time. With so many moving parts, you want everyone working together along the same timeline. Each stakeholder should advise you of any potential pitfalls that may cause delays or warrant tweaks to the schedule.

Ensure all building materials are lined up and scheduled, taking into account potential supply chain delays so there are no surprises. Additionally, build into the schedule a progress report/communication plan for the client to keep him or her aware of any adjustments that may have to be made along the way. You want to be able to stay ahead of any potential problems and keep the client informed.

Other elements to consider during the planning phase include creating a safety plan, conducting a risk assessment, and developing a response plan.

Detailed strategic planning is the most important aspect of successful construction project management. The more complex the project, the more planning will be required. A well-planned project increases efficiency and provides a step-by-step road map for completing the work on time and within budget.