Satisfying Needs from an Owner’s or Investor’s Perspective
All throughout the construction project lifecycle, owners and investors must rely on construction site project managers to run the technical and managerial activities at the job site—including the performance of outsourced contractors—to protect their investment and maximize their chances for success. Understanding what’s important to an owner or investor and how to use the tools you have at-hand to meet their needs will greatly simplify a project manager’s life, and may build relationships that result in being awarded future projects. The construction industry is built on a large foundation of trust and reliability, so anything a project manager can do to foster that type of relationship with an owner or investor will help their end game—and the best way to do that is by showing them, not just talking them through it. The more transparent a project manager can be regarding the details of a project the better—so get ready to be comfortable standing behind that proverbial transparent shower curtain, project managers! The more visual insight you can provide to your owner’s and investor’s, the better.
There are some key aspects of an owner or investor’s role in a project to consider:
- Each project comes with an associated level of risk for the owner or investor—understanding the level of risk they’re taking on will help a project manager successfully manage the project. Also, the success or failure of a project is often tied to an owner’s or investor’s ability to choose a competent, professional construction team—that’s a lot of pressure to pick the right people and it’s why trust is such a critical part of this process
- Owners and investors need to be sure that project managers won’t protect their own interests ahead of that of the owners and investors when stakes are this high
- They also need to ensure that builders won’t cut corners in order to improve their own profit margins
- They are concerned with life cycle costs of a constructed facility; meaning not only the construction costs but ALL the costs associated with procuring, building, opening, running, and maintaining the facility
- Saving small amounts of money during the construction project may not be worthwhile in the long run, and they are therefore concerned with the quality of the finished product; as well as, the cost of the actual construction project itself
- They will focus on people maintaining their proper role on the job site and for all the various activities of the participants at all stages—this reduces risks, slow-downs, and costs
- Owners and investors are often the ones left to mitigate conflicts, provide regulatory compliance details, and manage crises before they get out of hand—helping to offload some of the pressure of that by using proper documentation and process procedures will really help a project manager
- They are concerned with the amount of basic units of work that the various laborers can perform—understanding how fast someone can get a quality product completed is important to them
- They are experiencing external pressures from non-traditional companies bidding on their projects—sometimes from a different country or from a different segment of the industry, which causes cost pressures; they are looking for every opportunity to understand their current costs and manage them more efficiently
- Owners and investors care about the documentation of change orders, the reduction of cost escalations as a result of those changes, and keeping projects on time
- Defect identification and defect correction procedures are important—they can prevent litigation issues due to flaws in the end-product
- Owners and investors are not only concerned with the building project at hand, but they’re also always laying the groundwork for future projects—this means that giving them an easy way to document and provide historical details of their prior projects makes their next “sales” pitch a breeze
All of these factors and concerns can be addressed with a structured, enterprise-grade auditable documentation system of record. While different companies use different systems, one of the strongest, most reliable tools in a project manager’s toolbox is the construction job site camera. If you re-read the bulleted list above, you’ll see that each of the owner’s or investor’s concerns could be addressed using an enterprise-grade construction camera system that has a best-in-class web software interface on the backend.
These systems foster collaboration, demonstrate construction site progress, audit on-site crew performance, and allow a project manager to do everything from document job site conditions to create online photo albums documenting project progress, respond faster to job site crises, provide awe-inspiring time lapse videos that can be used for promoting future projects, and even job site security during off-hours with security recording features.
Many aspects of construction site project management have been impacted by new technologies, but one thing is for-sure—NOT using technologies like construction cameras to manage projects has pushed construction contractors out of the mainstream project bidding process. The advantages they provide are undeniable and the impact of not meeting owner’s and investor’s needs is that they can’t compete. The ultimate test of a construction site project manager is their ability to solve problems in new and unfamiliar situations. One of the ways to solve that problem is with construction cameras—it’s a win-win for owners, investors, and project managers.