Are the old ways you’ve been keeping track of and registering construction quality assurance (QA) records too time-consuming, not good enough, and requiring too much work that cuts into your ROI? Or maybe you want to bring order to your complex, large-scale QA process.
With these things in mind, it’s easier to see how important quality assurance is in building projects and how it affects the schedule, budget, and measures of how well the project is done. Everything hinges on how it’s handled. Using quality management software that speeds up the whole process from start to finish can help improve the quality.
If you’re still using a paper punch list system to track defects, it’s time for an upgrade to a digital solution. Paper systems are slow and inefficient compared to more modern options. They also have a high risk of error and can’t be accessed by everyone involved in the construction process.
A digital quality assurance system is easy to access from anywhere and share with multiple people. It also allows for easy, real-time updates that can be seen by all users, making it a great way to track progress and defect management on your construction project.
What should I look for when selecting construction management software?
Defending against building defect claims can often be costly and time-consuming, even when the problem is small. The discovery typically happens long after construction has ended. Different issues such as inadequate quality control, training, or planning can potentially lead to these defects.
By reducing the possibility of construction defects and the subsequent expensive claims, quality assurance becomes a fundamental element in all aspects of designing, building, and operating a construction project.
The best quality assurance software goes far beyond simple note-taking and photo documentation, with a range of additional features to annotate, record, time-stamp, and collaborate when tracking, identifying, and resolving defects on a constriction project.
With this in mind, here’s what quality assurance software features can help your company take quality control for a construction project beyond the basics:
1. Provides a tamper-proof digital audit trail
A construction project’s quality is ensured by following written procedures. Documents like quality control procedures, checklists for inspection, compliance, quality control testing, closeout specifications, change orders, handover packages, vendor data, site crew credentials, and many others fall into this category. If those files are difficult to access when needed, it could cause significant delays in the project’s completion.
Because of this, it is important that the defect management software can store all the necessary documentation in one place, in a reliable single source of truth where the most recent versions of all project files and data can be found.
There are many advantages to using quality management software for everything. Having this system in place shortens the time spent looking for the relevant paperwork. Also, it makes it easy to record and change items on a checklist without entering the same information twice. Lastly, it prevents people from having to pay for problems that were caused by a lack of documentation or a delay in getting documentation.
2. A single source of truth
If the documentation is not communicated to the project team and the stakeholders, then it serves little purpose. The challenge is getting it to the people who need it, whenever they require it. Rather than relying on slow and disjointed methods like email, text, and fax, try digital-based solutions.
When it comes to immediate defect concerns, dangerous site conditions, change orders, and inspection reports, the software used in quality assurance must act as a central hub for real-time collaboration and communication.
Construction management software can alert the right people immediately if a critical flaw is found during an inspection. This gives them time to work together on a solution before the problem causes more delays or costs so much that it threatens the project’s on-time completion.
3. Customizable form and template builder
By using the standard forms in defect management, all internal tests, audits, and inspections can be done with the same level of care and consistency. No details are overlooked.
With the help of an online form builder, this can save a lot of time and effort in this respect. Quality checks using specialized forms to ensure that work is being done according to plan, code, and owner specifications can be very helpful for such projects.
4. 24/7 cloud information access
Any quality management has to be cloud-based. This way, it can be accessed from any computer, smartphone, or tablet anywhere there is an internet connection. This will allow an entire team to work more efficiently and effectively.
Think of how much easier quality assurance, inspection, and commissioning would be if this were in place. A member of the quality assurance (QA) team can take a picture and record any differences from the standards on their smartphone or tablet for future reference. They can also send an immediate alert to the construction company to get things fixed before they become a big problem.
Also, the cloud provides a safe place to store the growing amount of data and paperwork that a project generates. This is especially helpful for large-scale construction management projects like building a new building or renovating an old one. Unlike when files are kept on a company server or an individual’s computer, there is no reason to worry about storage space limitations.
There are a few key things you can do at each stage of your construction project to minimize the chance of defects and legal issues later on. By being proactive, you can save yourself time, money, and headaches down the road.
Since quality assurance is all about reducing the chances of problems, you should make a detailed construction quality assurance plan to use as a guide throughout the project. The plan lays out the steps that must be taken to avoid problems and construction defects, and it also serves as the basis for the schedule that all teams follow.
PlanRadar is a B2B SaaS provider that specializes in construction, quality assurance and defect management, used by over 120,000 customers all over the world for document, communication, project and construction site management.
To learn more about how PlanRadar helps you manage defects in construction projects, start a free 30-day trial today.