Time management in the construction industry may get a bad rap, but it’s one of the most important aspects of any construction project. Two of the biggest reasons time management is so important on a construction project are time and money.
The construction industry is, unfortunately, often known for both low jobsite productivity and traditional approaches to the construction process. The productivity in the construction industry isn’t just low, though. It has continually dropped over the last 40 years. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has recorded a declining rate of 0.6% over the last four decades.
How You’re Losing Money on a Construction Project
So, what exactly is time management and how can focusing on it help with your budget and timeliness on a construction project? The process of recording and controlling the time spent by staff on a project is the definition of time management. Good time management can lead to more productivity and a better performance, which in turn fuels cost effectiveness on a construction site. On the other hand, bad time management can negatively impact your project, leading to lost money in more ways than one:
- Salary Cost: One way you can lose money on a construction site is through your workers’ salaries. Skilled workers are paid hourly, and additional hours, days, and even months of work means more money toward these skilled laborers that you may not have anticipated.
- Contract Complications: Honoring a legally binding contract throughout a construction project is a must. Not getting a construction project done on time may void your contract or be a breach of contract – both of which can cost big money.
- Future Projects: Bidding on future construction projects with a bad reputation of not getting work done in a timely way can hinder your efforts. By utilizing time management and getting construction projects done on time, you can help to maintain a positive reputation for the future.
Effectively Manage Your Time
It’s easy to fail at time management on a construction project. There are dozens of project risks, like unexpected events, poor weather leading to lost days of work, and even failing to realize and account for the complexity of a project. But, with a simple three-step process, you can meet your budgets and hit your targets on a construction project.
- Set Goals
An effective planning strategy is to identify all tasks that need to be completed, and set goals based on those tasks. Both long-term and short-term goals should be identified at the very beginning of your project and maintained through specific daily goals.
Distinguish which tasks are urgent or important. Then, create a schedule for all of the construction project tasks as well as a good estimate on their completion. Sticking with this schedule will help you meet your goals.
Looking back at the goals you set periodically to make sure you’re staying on schedule is an important step to time management. If you’re falling behind, head to step two and figure out why it’s happening and ways you can alleviate the problem.
Time Management in Construction
Time management on a construction project is so much more than creating a task list and marking it off your planner at the end of each day. Effective planning includes setting goals, prioritizing, reviewing, and even problem solving. Successful time management leads to better productivity, time, and money on a construction project.
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