A Simple Strategy for Tracking Construction Progress in Real Time
Typical construction projects are very complex undertakings with numerous moving parts (both literally and figuratively) that need to be kept in order. However, this is a lot easier said than done, especially if it is a big project, or you are overseeing more than one at once. Fortunately, there are ways that you can improve your progress tracking. In the same way that a laser level provides new capabilities over an analog spirit level, so too can modern tools and techniques help with project management.
1) Get Your Data Collection in Order
One of the main challenges of good progress tracking is the number of disparate data sources that most construction teams have. You may have information being tracked on the site, financial data, supply inventory data and more. In many cases, these data sources are siloed and occasionally even contradictory.
This can create trouble for any attempts to efficiently track progress, especially in real-time. So, the first step should be simplifying where information is coming from. Ideally, this can be achieved by integrating systems to create a single source of progress data.
2) Don’t Forget Preconstruction Processes
The preconstruction stage is important needs to be tracked as clearly as any other part of the project. However, this is often overlooked as a key part of progress tracking. It can be helpful to have a platform that can track submittals and requests for information.
Starting with your progress tracking from the beginning is essential. Preconstruction delays can be very impactful if left unchecked.
3) Track Tasks and Schedules
At the heart of every project is a set of tasks that need to be completed. Being able to track all these tasks as they get done is one of the best ways to ensure the successful progression of your project. This is even better when you can organize tasks by dependencies and outcomes.
Additionally, you will need to have organized scheduling. This is both a key element of organization and a powerful data point for understanding where bottlenecks and holdups are happening. It is a good idea to schedule equipment as well as people. You may not need to track who is using each laser level or hammer, but you should track heavy equipment that is scarce and hard to move.
4) Track Productivity in the Field
With the above information, you have some valuable insights to help you keep track of productivity. You can infer how quickly each individual and team is completing tasks. It is also helpful to gather reports from managers in the field.
This can also serve as a communication vector for asking and answering questions. Sometimes misunderstandings and slow communication can be among the biggest inhibitors to successful progress. By allowing for clarifications and addressing issues, your progress tracking can directly improve project success.
5) Take Full Advantage of Photo Documentation
Photos can be very helpful for progress tracking in the construction field. Unfortunately, this is usually only helpful in the moment. For most projects, looking backward on the progress of a project is a series of untagged and unhelpful photos. This can significantly hinder any future evaluation.
So, if you want to take full advantage of photo documentation, you need a system that will help with automatic tagging and organizing photos. GPS tagging can help as can user-submitted metadata.
Find the Tools You Need To Make Your Project a Success
With the right strategies, you can keep your construction project organized. You will also need the right tools and supplies for everything from drafting and design to construction. Engineer Supply has the tools you need including safety gear, must-have tools and tech-enabled time-savers such as laser levels. Place your order today.