Quality is the most common word in this industry than any other. In an industry where schedules are decreasing and budgets are now becoming leaner the quality requirements seem to go up.
Bringing on all of the consultants such as Architectural, mechanical, electrical, LEED, structural, building envelope, etc at the start of the project allows everyone to start working and coordinating together.
Preventing The Quality Issues
We can be mindful of the types of issues and what efforts can be made to improve or reduce the occurrence of quality issues. Understanding what causes an issue is the first step in prevention, here are a few causes of potential issues on construction sites:
- Time Schedules are too aggressive or owners on a single trade
- Poor contract documentation and design
- Overly complicated detail and designs
- Site conditions
- Inexperienced selection of contractors, subcontractors, and consultants
- Poor quality building materials
What and Where Investments Made To Improve The Quality?
The question is a relevant one because there are lots of areas where time and money can be spent to improve on quality to prevent issues. This starts from the very early phase of the project and that doesn’t necessarily mean spending a ton of money on expensive materials.
Another good idea in preconstruction and during construction is to invest in mockups. Mockups provide everyone the ability to build a physical sample of what the drawings are calling for. This lets everyone see it and look for tricky details that may come to light before the project goes into total production.
Spending a small amount on mockup up front can save a significant amount of time and money rather than correcting issues down the road.
Selecting a quality vendor is also important for delivering a good product. If a glass guy only does window walls then there is a good very chance that the contractor might not be able to deliver the custom glass ceiling specified. Understanding which vendor is good at and awarding to them accordingly is important. If something is a specialty item find the specialty company that delivers it and give work to them, then don’t give it a generic trade and hope things will work out.
The same comment can be said for general contractors and consultants. As not all consultants and contractors are good at offices, residential, and retail. Always choose a vendor who is specific to what you are doing, they will have experience and know how to get the project done.
In days past there were numerous ways of performing the task and no matter who you talked to it is always the most feared and dreaded part. In recent years technology has made the process much more smoother and easier to manage.
Meeting the targets can sometimes be a challenge, and you will inevitably meet new people throughout your career just through exposure to various projects, however, if you are looking for other opportunities such as networking events. Trade shows, talks, and other events bring together a large group of individuals that have similar interests in a great way.