The construction industry is a dynamic one, with new developments coming to the market every day. With this comes the need for Quality Assurance (QA) professionals who can keep up with the changing landscape and make sure that their projects are completed on time and within budget.
Quality assurance in construction is an often overlooked, yet vital part of any project. quality assurance managers manage construction projects and build quality by ensuring that compliance and regulatory standards are adhered to, and Quality Control (QC) processes are followed both on-site and off-site. However, quality assurance management is not without its challenges.
In this article, we will explore some of the common challenges construction quality assurance managers face today and what can be done to fix, mitigate or avoid them completely.
The role of quality assurance and quality control in construction
Construction quality assurance is the process of ensuring that the construction project being delivered meets the expectations of the customer.
Quality control, on the other hand, is the process of evaluating, monitoring, and improving the quality of the construction project. It’s often used in conjunction with quality assurance which focuses on ensuring that all components are properly assembled and tested before being installed on-site.
Quality assurance managers are responsible for making sure that all aspects of construction are done according to specifications: from how materials are handled through building construction planning and scheduling, right down to testing at every stage along the way – before final delivery is done (which includes inspections).
In short, quality control is used to make sure that all products are created to high standards, while quality assurance is used to ensure that products are made according to specifications.
The role of defect management in the construction industry
Defect management is a process that helps to identify and correct defects in construction projects. It refers to the actions taken during construction projects to identify, manage, and minimise the risk of defects occurring during or after the completion of a project.
Construction defects can occur due to multiple reasons:
- Poor planning – If a project doesn’t follow proper planning guidelines then there is an increased chance for issues with quality control.
- Poor quality materials – It’s important that all materials used by professionals meet certain standards set forth by local laws before they begin working onsite.
- Poor supervision – Sometimes a project manager or foreman might not be aware of the issues that are happening on-site until it’s too late.
- Poor communication – Lack of sync between team members who are working on different parts of a project.
Top challenges faced by construction quality assurance managers
In the construction industry, quality assurance managers can face many potential challenges that can threaten their ability to deliver a quality project on time and within budget.
The most common ones are:
- The lack of a clear definition of what constitutes “good” or “bad” workmanship.
- The lack of strong internal controls for monitoring and reviewing contractor performance during build construction and delivery phases.
- Poor communication between project stakeholders regarding change orders and extensions to contracts, which results in increased cost pressures on all parties involved
1. Lack of clear definition
Construction quality assurance managers are tasked with ensuring that all workers on a project meet the standards set by the project’s owner. Without clear definitions of good and bad workmanship, the manager may not be able to effectively do this.
The problem may be that there is no clear definition of what constitutes good and bad workmanship in a construction project. This can make it difficult for the construction quality assurance manager to understand why certain things are being done or not done, what should be done about it, or even how to explain it to other workers on the job site.
The result can be confusion among workers who don’t understand why they’re being asked to do something or why their work is being criticised by their manager. It also puts pressure on them because they don’t know what kind of effort they should put into their job if they want it done well.
One important way to solve a lack of clear definition of construction project outcomes is to establish clear policies on how contractors should perform their tasks (e.g., what documentation is required). The goal here is to keep everyone informed about what needs to be done so there is no confusion about responsibilities or expectations around deadlines or completion dates for milestones.
Another useful way is to use software to help define the standards by which quality assurance managers want their workers to measure their work quality. Another option is to have regular meetings with their team members so that they can get together and discuss how they think a job should be done, what parts of the job are most important, and so on.
A critical thing that can help with the problem is having clear goals for the company’s workforce. If there are goals in place, then it will be easier for people who work on projects or jobs to know what they need to do to make sure that the project meets those standards.
2. Poor communication
Poor communication between project stakeholders regarding change orders and extensions to contracts can result in increased cost pressures on all parties involved.
Digital collaboration is one of the effective ways to reduce the chances of poor communication in a construction project.
Digital construction management software can be used as an effective tool to improve stakeholder communication by eliminating time wasted on inefficient processes. These digital platforms allow employees and contractors to communicate with their teams faster than ever before, allowing more information sharing between team members at every stage of a project’s life cycle.
3. Inconsistent or lack of quality control monitoring
Sometimes, the most common challenge is a lack of strong internal controls for monitoring and reviewing contractor performance during the build construction and delivery phases.
Monitoring contractors, sub-contractors, and employee performance during different construction phases can be challenging because they are often spread out across multiple locations with a multitude of project tasks to complete to fast deadlines.
Whether the project manager is managing a single-site project or an international building, it’s important to know what’s going on at each location and with each team member involved in the project.
Using digital tools, construction project managers can improve the monitoring of construction partners and employees. This is a very effective way to address this issue because it provides an opportunity for an owner or manager or project manager/supervisor to monitor projects more efficiently than ever before.
With changes, new solutions are required to improve existing processes and tools. Digital platforms play an important part in construction quality assurance today as it provides a platform for better efficiency, productivity, and cost-effectiveness.
By addressing these common quality assurance challenges, managers can play an essential role in ensuring the quality of construction projects. With the right processes and systems in place, managers can ensure that quality standards are met and construction quality assurance is maintained.