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Here’s how you can streamline a construction site and maximize your productivity. Read on!
Every industry experiences its fair share of inefficiencies and bottlenecks in workflows.
The construction industry often needs help with these challenges because of several factors, including labor management, contracting, project management, planning, and more. When disorganization and injuries occur, efficiency disappears, and the contractor’s bottom line suffers.
If you’re in charge of a construction site struggling to meet deadlines, it’s time to take control of the situation before a string of delays makes it impossible to meet project expectations.
The following recommendations will help you better monitor your construction crew and implement ways to improve your team’s productivity.
Health and Safety Directly Support Streamlining Construction Operations
On-the-job safety is a hot topic in the construction industry because this field experiences the most work-related injuries. All it takes is a single incident to completely shut down your worksite and cost your firm thousands in related workers’ compensation claims.
Taking a proactive approach to this threat by recognizing and addressing the risks that lead to accidents. More often than not, contractors and their crews get hurt because the work environment needs to be more organized and safe. Creating an orderly construction site begins with managing waste effectively.
Keep workers from leaving discarded materials and debris anywhere possible because this often leads to obstructed pathways that cause trip and fall injuries. Instead, designate a couple of dumpsters for waste and consider investing in low profile hoppers for smaller work areas on site.
Additionally, insist crew members complete a daily cleaning chore list to ensure all tools, supplies, and equipment aren’t scattered around the job site. By not having to spend time looking for the needed machinery, your team finds what they need quickly and gets right to work.
Regularly Measure Productivity Rates
One of the best ways to improve your construction site’s productivity is to keep track of it. Every aspect of your project is measurable, so if a slowdown occurs, you’ll know right away and can address the issue causing it.
As the job continues, you’ll pick up patterns that reveal what aspects of your project might experience delays, such as:
- Poor machinery maintenance
- Supply chain hold-ups
- Employee turnover
- Workload demands
- Job-related Injuries and illness
It’s easy to assume employees are unproductive, but when you look at the metrics, you may find this isn’t the case at all.
Clearly Communicate Expectations
A challenging aspect of construction work is ensuring all team members are on the same page. Communication is often the culprit for mistakes, so employees must understand what their duties are, how you measure their performance, and who to notify if issues arise.
While you can deliver instructions verbally, consider a brief onboarding meeting so that questions get answered. Daily morning huddles between yourself and your contractors help address new project directions, share progress reports, and more.
Don’t Be Afraid to Delegate
Overburdening a team of workers with a disproportionate amount of work leads to mistakes, burnout, and rework. Therefore, it’s important to recognize when delegating tasks to other crew members is necessary. In addition, you should insist on cross-training some of your workers to ensure you’ll always have someone onsite to get the job done.
When delegating work to others, make sure those chosen have the necessary skills to do so.
Stay On Top of Building Materials
Imagine being in the middle of a construction project and discovering you are out of drywall. You go to your vendor’s website to order more and see it will take at least five business days to arrive. Because you’ve already framed in the walls, there is only something else to do once more panels get delivered.
Keeping track of your inventory helps your team estimate how much time they have until they are out of stock. With this information, schedule orders to arrive right before materials run out.
Invest in Construction Management Software
There isn’t a single industry on the planet that hasn’t incorporated technological tools into its processes. The construction industry is no different with the introduction of remote sensors that can track production and management software suites offering digital tools to streamline operational flows.
Imagine how much more informed your decision-making could be, having measurable insights about job performance, employee productivity, and client trend tracking.
Construction management software does more than simplify invoicing and track employee hours; it provides a window into the foundational processes of your firm.
Implement a Just-In-Time Inventory Strategy
Due to the dynamic nature of construction, managing inventory can be challenging. However, you may find implementing a Just-in-Time (JIT) Delivery strategy better supports leaner operational practices and boosts productivity. The goal is to cut down on unneeded inventory and only receive materials necessary for your current project. This means you’ll have fewer roofing tiles to throw away after sitting on a pallet exposed to the elements for a year.
JIT supports the elimination of D.O.W.N.T.I.M.E. (Defect, Overproduction, Waiting, Non-Utilized Talent, Transportation, Inventory, Motion, and Extra Processing), the eight wastes to avoid in lean construction practices.
However, to succeed using this method, your construction company needs to be proactive about planning and managing materials and job-related equipment.
Hire Performance-Conscious Site Management
Anyone you hire for a management role should understand the value of operating at peak performance. Finding talent to fit this bill may take more time to recruit, but will be well worth the effort in the long run. They will be able to identify potential issues that might arise during construction and work to find solutions before the project gets impacted.
Your construction site can maximize productivity and achieve project baselines with the right management strategies and best practices.
These accomplishments keep clients satisfied and increase your profit margins and give your construction company a reputational boost that edges out your competition.
So don’t let high worker turnover and runaway deadlines hold your firm back from success, and start implementing some or all of these recommendations.
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