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The art of coordinating trades on site

Construction management is an art that requires the skill to build relationships and deliver exceptional interiors.

The second half of that statement can’t happen without the first. Especially when the relationships in question are the ones built and maintained with all of the different professional tradespeople and craft workers on a construction project. This is the art of construction management.

Orchestrating logistical challenges

Built Interiors has developed close relationships with many of Ireland’s top trade practitioners, and built a foundation of practical knowledge and expertise in addressing the logistical challenges when it comes to orchestrating them.

The construction project needs to be completed on time, within budget, and to the required quality standards. To achieve this, it is important to coordinate various trades on the construction site - drywall installers, electricians, plumbers, carpenters, and specialist joiners. Excellent communication skills are needed on site to ensure that all trades understand their roles and responsibilities, and are working together to achieve the project goals.

Underpinning the work is the safety culture.This includes providing training and supervision to all trades to ensure that they are working safely and following all safety protocols.

The time cost quality paradigm

We understand the relationship between the three primary forces in a project - time,cost and quality. As a contractor, we work with the design team to control the budget, maintain the schedule and deliver a quality project.

The nature of the construction industry, and projects happening in different locations, is that teams of people who do not necessarily work with each other (or even know each other sometimes), come together to collaborate on the delivery of a design with many moving parts and interdependent elements on a temporary basis. Ensuring these diverse teams who come together temporarily work in harmony towards a common goal requires careful management.

Successfully coordinating trades can help to reduce costs, delays and the disruption that can be caused by problems on site and the need for any remedial works or redesign.

What happens when trades are not successfully coordinated?

When coordination fails to happen, you can end up with a combination of the following situations, all of which are going to cause delays, add expense and perhaps worst of all, result in frustration with and between your contractors and suppliers.

  • One trade can end up unable to begin their task because the previous, dependent task, which another trade needs to complete first, has not been finished or even begun yet.

  • Trades work on tasks that are a waste of their talents and expertise… and your budget.

  • Trades can show up to the site unannounced, forcing you to rush or delay other processes.

  • Trades arrive on site with the incorrect skill sets, tools or supplies, due to poor briefing and instructions.

  • Workers wait around unproductively standing by to be told what to do next.

The keys to effective construction management

Here are what we at Built Interiors see as the building blocks to successful site management and coordination of trades.

Communication: Possibly the largest root cause of bad construction management and the coordination of trades on site is poor communication with trade partners. Lines of communication need to be open and transparent at all stages of the project.

Time management: When schedules slide, so too does the budget.

Data management: So much time can be wasted by, for example, trades looking for the most up-to-date drawings or, worse, working off of the wrong ones.

Conflict management: It is critical that there are processes and procedures in place where project data misplaced or mistakes are made.

Training: Verifying the skills, certifications, credentials and training of all trade partners will help reduce mistakes and injuries on site.

Technology: The latest construction management software can improve efficiencies and help address some of the challenges with each of the building blocks mentioned above. One of the software solutions we employ at Built Interiors is the Common Data Environment.

Benefits of using Common Data Environment (CDE) in construction management

A Common Data Environment (CDE) is a central repository that acts as a single source of information for each construction project. It is updated throughout the course of the project and holds relevant information such as drawings, documents, contracts, reports, bids, and model information.

The CDE enhances collaboration between the trades and increases security around the documents they need to complete their tasks. It also streamlines systems and processes used within and between the contractor and the trades. The CDE reduces errors and provides a clear and secure record of all changes and amendments made on site.

It ensures that all stakeholders are working from the same information, which reduces the risk of misunderstandings and conflicts. It enables all stakeholders to collaborate and communicate effectively, which reduces the risk of delays and cost overruns.

Future of coordination of trades on site

The future of coordination of trades on site is likely to be driven by technology. The use of Building Information Modelling (BIM) is becoming increasingly popular in construction management. BIM enables all stakeholders to access and share project information in real-time, which ensures that all trades are working from the latest information.

The use of drones and other digital technologies is also likely to increase in the future. Drones can be used to survey construction sites and provide real-time information to all stakeholders. Other digital technologies such as augmented reality and virtual reality can be used to visualise construction projects and identify potential conflicts before they occur.

Let us manage your next construction project

Built Interiors has a proven track record in planning, managing, monitoring and coordinating trades on live projects with the goal of delivering not only a high-quality finish, but an unrivalled standard of health and safety.

If you’d like to find out more about our construction management expertise and how we coordinate teams, trades and suppliers on site to complete exceptional projects, get in touch with us today.

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