Construction Administration in the modern construction era – Why it‘s important and leads to better results
At a certain point, cost reductions become counterproductive. Sometimes owners skip construction administration in order to lower expenses on architects. But, given the many possible delays that can occur in the final stages of a construction project, this decision seems unreasonable. The major reason why owners strike off construction management from the architect´s offer is that it is thought of as a valid option! The following article will show you why construction management is actually a very integral part of the whole building process and should not be omitted so easily.
In order to understand the importance of construction administration and why one should implement PlanRadar to achieve the best possible results, we need to review the following topics:
- The underrated contributions of the architect
- The relationship between owner and architect
- Modern construction takes place on the cloud
- Improve your results with PlanRadar.
Construction Administration – The architects underrated importance to the whole process
The following graph from Popular Science shows that unforeseen changes have a bigger impact on cost and performance the later they appear in a project’s timeline. This graph is well known by most professionals in the industry. So, logically one would think that the importance of paying attention during the final stages of a building construction is carried out in practice. What is more surprising it is that a number of owners invest in the architectural design services, but forfeit the final phase of the process, which would be construction administration.
An article by EntreArchitect had a very accurate analogy describing the importance of construction administration:
Imagine a surgeon diagnosing her patient, preparing for surgery, making the first incision, then handing the actual procedure off to the anesthesiologist. Imagine an attorney researching the case, spending six months preparing her prosecution, selecting a jury, presenting to the court, then heading back to the office to prepare for the next case on the day before final arguments.
It is no different for an architect. We spend months preparing a design, working our way through three levels of increasingly detailed development and documenting exactly how a structure is to be constructed. We are responsible for the health, safety and welfare of the users of our creations and are legally liable for what is ultimately built. It is our responsibility, as licensed professionals, to observe the construction of our designs and ensure that they are built as documented.
So why do owners seem to have an error in reasoning by withdrawing from construction administration? – It seems, that most think they do not need the architect beyond the point of the final drawings, so they refuse the services for construction administration when offered. Once they receive the final drawings, they decide that the contractor can handle it without the architect´s involvement. While a set of drawings can address the main issues and communicates the intent of the design, no single set of plans can cover everything. No matter how thorough they are, because construction is a very complex process. When owners think that money can be saved by leaving the architect on the sidelines, it is often their first step towards developing future problems. The same goes for a software-aided working method. Integrating PlanRadar into your projects is the most practical way to navigate through any upcoming problems you may encounter. Try the 30-day free trial and let yourself be convinced of its simple usability.
But why keep the architect involved for the whole period? – Because it is a very common occurrence that during a building process the owner may find opportunities to improve or extend the design in a way that was not apparent during the drawing phase. So, who better to oversee this change within the process? Of course, the person who knows the project best and is most familiar with the drawings and the vision. Another example could be on reviewing workmanship or building materials. The architect best knows the intent of the designs. He can ensure that everything is built according to the design documents and that they reflect what was intended by his drawings. So, by keeping the architect on board for this duration, solving problems becomes easier and helps your processes run more smoothly. An Architecture review with the help of PlanRadar will optimize the services offered by your planner.
Modern Construction – The relationship between the Owner and the Architect
When managing construction projects, there are unknowns and variables that can affect the outcome of the project. That’s why having the ability to make quick decisions can be a huge advantage. Projects where the owner and the architect share a close working relationship are very likely to have a satisfactory outcome. The team behind PlanRadar recognized this circumstance and created the ideal functions that benefit all parties. The major one being the decision to having a cloud-based web platform. This, among other things, allows the owner to check in on the project status at any time and be provided with the most current information. This gives him additional peace of mind, which is exactly what you want. The transparency and traceability of the workflows increase accountability and improve collaboration among all parties. Especially owners will be relieved that they no longer need to track everything coming from E-mails. Now they find all the information gathered in one place, which makes them easy to find and share.
This symbiotic this relationship becomes the better alternative for the project. An owner naturally wants the most out of his money, while the architect is also interested in delivering a reputable building. All in all, they both want something of equal value and are equally interested in the project´s success. In the construction management phase, the architect’s role becomes that of an observer and record keeper more than a designer or draftsman. In the modern construction era, this role is best fulfilled when you have the right management tool to help you out.
Modern Construction – The era of the cloud
While there are many features and functions of PlanRadar the most valuable benefit is the ability to find all project-related administrative elements quickly and easily in one place and to share information instantly. Construction Administrators should take pride in the efficiency and simplicity of their workflows. If they still include unnecessary steps then the operations probably have not transitioned to an efficient fully digital work platform. If project members still manually log various types of construction project paperwork into Excel spreadsheets to electronically capture key data, then you have not transitioned into the modern construction era. Unlike decentralized storage options, a cloud-based platform makes it easy to find the right documentation needed for specific tasks from any location or device. This means that the often very long punch lists that contractors provide shortly before a project is completed, can be addressed and dealt with in a more convenient manner.
But, before you go decide on any cloud-based management tool, make sure it fulfills the following minimum requirement features:
- Easy integration into your existing administration and operational processes
- Real-time processing, storage, and management
- Secure, central repository of project data
- Process transparency among selective project participants.
- Immediately get access to the data you need and hit the ground running without any enrollment
- 24/7 secure access to project data from any web-enabled device. Significantly reduce the time required to manage, complete and report on punch lists
- Reduce documentation processing times from hours to minutes. Improve the quality of project handover documentation with an entire process history
- This increases the accountability and collaboration among internal and external team members as well as with the building owner.
PlanRadar for Construction Administration – Results that you will notice
By working with the cloud you will eventually see that it comes with so many more benefits than the ones mentioned above. Unlike workflows that depend on paper notes and folders, a sharable electronic repository of construction documentation allows for better communication and collaboration among all team members. For an ecosystem that is as complex and dynamic as the construction industry, this is more than favorable. Advantageous situations like this are important throughout the entire process, especially in the construction administration phase. Users can check on-site quality, report on-the-spot errors, and instantly create documentation. The only tool a project participant needs is his tablet, cell phone or laptop. Information is never lost and can be accessed at any time. This transparency of data helps to identify and resolve project bottlenecks efficiently. Contact your contractor from the job site, the office or even from home without forgoing any architecture- or design plans with our software solution.
Furthermore, you have the option to export data, statistics, reports, and tickets at any time (as a PDF or Microsoft Excel file). This comes in very handy to a construction administrator, since owners frequently demand reports. When exporting data, custom filters can be applied that allow for sorting only relevant data. Additionally, there is the option to attach a company logo, custom text and project photos to each report. You can work with all our services on the job site or in your architecture office 30 days free of charge!
What the team behind PlanRadar recognized very early is that a successful defect- and documentation software builds around the needs of diverse team members. That is how it managed to reduce the time and costs associated with construction management over traditional paper-based or hybrid processes and systems.
Quality on site, in architecture and design, depends on review processes and optimized workflows. Every contractor takes part in these work processes and can be connected through a software like PlanRadar.
Therefore, make sure to be on the right side of this modern construction era by knowing the importance of construction management and technology. Take time to think of the advantages that the right management tool would bring to the table, and contact us today to see if PlanRadar is a good fit for your organization’s needs.