Consulting and Project Planning: asking all those difficult questions

With the pandemic going on, construction firms and competitors we are talking to are often wondering about the strength of their pipeline.  When this problem has been solved (we have very successful competitors, creating a healthy business activity), another question comes quickly in mind: will the project remain on budget despite social distancing, covid related protocols, personnel safety requirements, etc. 

The ability to position an operational team for success (and safety!) should be our common, highest priority as an industry. However, many owners and customers want to skip or bypass the preconstruction phase of their project. This is not what we recommend. We believe the initial preconstruction expense will end up being a great investment to control costs, scope and risks.

Communication with the Owner about their needs for foundation, framing, land survey, or ADA compliance is critical to ensure future success. We compiled a list of questions to help preconstruction managers cover their grounds:

  • Do we have an operational standard for preconstruction? 
  • How will you approach project roadblocks?
  • Is our preconstruction process established? 
  • How will you address budget shortfalls?
  • What innovative construction methods will this project use?
  • What is the project’s greatest risk and how will that risk be addressed?
  • How will this customer become a promoter for the firm?
  • What crew blend maximizes utilization, productivity, efficiency, quality, etc.?
  • How will you increase profit margins during the project?
  • What project aspect provides the most cause for concern?
  • How will the team develop itself internally?

We hope this list will get you started!