Commercial construction is complicated and fast moving. While those characteristics of the job may be why you love it, they also might be the contributing factors to what make these projects tricky.
From the beginning of your project all the way through to the final steps to get you to the very end, you’re going to be spending a lot of time and money on your commercial construction.
With a lot on the line, let’s make sure you use that time and money in a productive manner from the get-go.
Keep reading to learn the 8 rules to follow to ensure a more productive commercial construction project.
8 Rules To Follow To Improve Productivity In Commercial Construction
Rule #1: Plan For The Right Planner
Before you even begin your commercial construction project, spend some money.
You’ll want to make sure you are hiring a competent, experienced Planner, so set some money aside for this person.
A Planner is a construction professional who is concerned with developing time plans on construction projects. This person will ensure that the project is completed on time, and within budget, and helps you to avoid poor construction site safety.
With all that responsibility on one person, you’ll make sure you are paying for one that is competent and experienced.
(Keep in mind that these folks are the highest paid in commercial construction, so you will likely be spending a good chunk of change.)
Rule #2: Lock In The Right Location
When it comes to commercial construction, you’ll want to work with an organization that has these two things ready to go:
- A large land portfolio
- Relationships with those who have land.
This rule is imperative to project success because your future location will make all the difference.
Find a location that works for both the business that you transact and for your employees.
Your site location will be one of the things that differentiate you from your competitors. This means you’ll want to choose the place that offers signage and access to take your enterprise into the future.
Rule #3: Negotiation Know-How
Work with an organization that knows the ins and outs of how negotiation and incentives work.
Tax incentives are often available for green building construction, such as the Internal Revenue Code Section 45L Tax Credit, the Section 179D Deduction, and the Section 48 Investment Tax Credit.
If all of those phrases went right over your head, this is exactly why you’ll want to find the right organization to negotiate both local and state incentives.
In the end, this will help to save you some money, so pick a construction organization that has a track record of success in this area.
Rule #4: Site-Based Management Musts
Before beginning your project, make sure you have Site-Based Management on staff that are up to the job and then some!
If you don’t want your commercial construction project to run smoothly, you can forget this rule. Otherwise, do your research and choose a site manager wisely.
What is a site manager?
Sometimes going by the title of construction manager, building manager, or site agent, this person will oversee operations on a day-to-day basis. He or she will ensure that work is done safely, on time, within budget, and to the right quality of standards.
Rule #5: Time Is Money (So Don’t Waste Either)
You want to keep your project on budget and on time, right?
Do some digging and find an organization with a reputation for both delivering on time and on budget.
A little research can go a long way when it means knowing the integrity of the people whom you will work on the project with.
Construct more than just a commercial project—also construct a solid team. Your team should be able to deliver from land selection to financing, construction, and management.
That being said, your builder should have relationships with subcontractors. This will ensure transparency and focus on pricing and time efficiency.
Rule #6: Put An Emphasis On Collaboration
While for most projects people would answer “sure, we collaborate,” when asked, this is not a time to go easy on the collaborative efforts.
Collaboration means more than designers preparing a design and sharing it with a construction manager to review and provide constructability comments.
Instead, collaboration means to have everybody sit around the table and collectively study the plan and any problems.
Bring your team together much earlier in the process. Then, study the problem together and brainstorm a range of solution.
This means you really are looking to create innovative solutions as a collective.
Rule #7: Learning + Action = Success
Tightly couple learning with action during your project.
Since projects are often too long to wait for lessons learned at the end, use the project management throughout as a learning experience.
Commercial construction projects are a temporary social organization that is put together. The goal is for everyone to learn every day from what occurred the day prior.
You may want to implement innovative Plus/Delta reviews every day or after every meeting. This way, you and your team can constantly be reflecting on what happened that day, what you’ve learned from it, and how you can implement innovation as a result of that learning.
Then, use that knowledge in the way you approach the work the next day or following week.
Rule #8: Increase Relatedness Between Workers
For your next commercial construction project, try to increase the relatedness of the project participants.
With traditional projects, individuals often come together on projects as strangers, and they might even leave as enemies.
Because of the dynamic nature of project delivery, all projects have will have rough spots along the journey. However, by creating durable, personal relationships among those that have to deliver the project, will help you in the long run.
Increasing relatedness will allow you to be able to withstand the ups and downs of a project more rigorously than if your team members just viewed each other as commercial entities.
What have you found makes you and your construction team the most productive during commercial projects? Tell us about your go-to productivity protocol and construction tips in the comments!
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