We all have schedules for almost everything: meetings at work, family plans — and the list goes on and on.
Construction is no different.
We start with a schedule that normally spells out the sequence of operations. There is always a start date and an end date, but what else should an owner look for in a schedule?
Is the project schedule in line with your critical-path needs?
There may be an area within the project that needs to be open by a certain date, or there may be an area that contractors can only have access to “after hours.”
This is critical-path information that should be included on the schedule that an owner can easily track.
Milestone dates are also an important part on the schedule for the owner.
Some major items may need to be completed before other tasks can begin.
For example, the building may require a new electrical service before we can start using new elevators or the new HVAC units. Another milestone date may be when staff needs to move back into a certain wing or area.
These milestone dates should all be clearly identified on the schedule.
Once we have critical-path needs and milestone dates built into the schedule, we need to track the progress up to these dates.
Scheduled weekly or bi-weekly progress or team meetings are a great time to get input from everyone involved with the project.
We all know that schedules change.
Some plans go quicker, and some plans take longer than we anticipate.
Be sure to make time to pause and look at the big picture to keep the construction schedule on track.