How to create a winning game plan for your construction projects

Hut, hut, hike!

It’s time to get in the game. Better yet, it’s time to tackle all your upcoming jobs like the champion you are. However, planning is probably the most overlooked – yet most important – part of the entire construction process.

Planning is more than just creating a thorough schedule. Although, that’s a big part of it. It’s your way to make sure you’re not playing defense against unseen cost overruns as the job progresses. Proper planning not only limits liability, but it clarifies budgetary objectives from the client, reduces the chance for expensive change orders and gets your team and trades on the same page … or playing field in this case.

With the Big Game coming up and frigid winter weather likely slowing things down until spring blooms, there’s no better time to focus on your business’ game plan.

Of course, you want it to be a winning plan – that’s a no brainer. So, take off the training pads and stop playing like a rookie. Here’s how to win again and again and again … you get the point.

Step 1) Establish the scope of the project – and your budget

The idea of the San Francisco 49ers or Kansas City Chiefs playing against one another blindfolded is crazy, right? Starting a construction project without first analyzing its scope is a lot like that.

Take the blindfold off and analyze everything. And we mean everything. Timelines, options for equipment, potential risks, site plans, design specification and more. The contractor shouldn’t be the only one in the loop, though. It’s important to keep communication with your team open from the start, so be sure they are thoroughly familiar with these details as well.

When understanding the scope of any big (or small) project, the B word takes priority. Yep, we’re talking budget.

Run a cost analysis to see if the plan can go according to … well, plan. Sure, the budget will to flux between the pre-construction and construction phases; however, conceptual estimates help establish an initial scope when taking material and logistical costs into consideration. This all helps avoid overspending – a client’s worst nightmare.

To store all your planning documentation and budgeting in one convenient place, construction project management software can act as your referee – keeping an eye on every penny and every detail.

Step 2) Assemble a dream team

There are those teams everyone remembers: the Green Bay Packers in the ‘60s, the Miami Dolphins in the ‘70s, the Patriots pretty much any year. You want that kind of team. We’re all looking for the Tom Brady of subcontractors.

The best way to land the best support? The best tech.

Streamline everything and use just one software to bid on trades, relay all need-to-know info and pay them. They’ll know you’re easy to work with and want to do so again – soon. Then, you’ll be able to draft who you want, when you want to ensure every home you build is a dream home.

Step 3) Schedule

If you really want to be the MVPP (most valuable project planner), you’ve got to put some serious work into your schedule. Start by simply assigning deadlines for every milestone, so all parties involved know when critical junctures need to be completed. In fact, think of these deadlines as yard lines and the project completion date as the endzone.

Detailed schedules help maintain an efficient and cost-effective job. Creating them in a smart, adaptable platform means you can edit as the project progresses, too.

Laying a house’s foundation pushed back a week due to weather? No problem. Consult your handy dandy schedule to see how quick things need to be done to still meet the endzone in time. Or, push things back and everything will move in accordance.

The other advantage to creating schedules in software is you can add to-do’s to each schedule item. Why just see when things need to get done when you can see how to get them done, too? Best of all, you can share it all with your clients, trades and team. Sounds like the making of a MVPP to us.

Huddle up …

… for some serious success. After all, success in football is a lot like success in construction. You have to nail the basics first – blocking and tackling. These three steps are the basics when it comes to planning.

For your next project, don’t just rush the field. We’re talking strategic long-pass plays. Need a coach to help nail down all this pre-planning? Buildertrend can be that coach.

Try our cutting-edge cloud-based construction project management software risk free to take the pain out of planning.

With planning before the project perfected, check the scoreboard. It’s only touchdowns from here on out!

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