Dealing with the Common Problems of Big Construction Projects

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Construction Projects
  • Currently, commercial construction costs range from $250-$350/sq meter.
  • Common construction project issues include budget constraints, unexpected changes, schedule delays, and communication problems.
  • Proactive measures like contingency planning, prompt adaptability, and resource tracking can mitigate most challenges.
  • Open communication and regular meetings can break down barriers, ensuring everyone understands the project scope and goals.
  • Safety equipment like synthetic web slings is crucial to prevent accidents such as falls, enhancing site safety and efficiency.

Construction projects, especially large-scale ones, can be overwhelming to manage. Apart from the pressing deadlines, there are many challenges construction managers ought to face. Budget constraints, unexpected changes, schedule delays, and communication barriers are just a few examples of the problems that can arise during big construction projects.

These setbacks can be frustrating and stressful for those in charge. However, as a construction manager, if you can anticipate these issues and take the necessary measures to address them, you can keep the project rolling smoothly. Here’s what you need to know about the average cost of construction projects, the common problems contributing to higher costs, and how to deal with them.

Average Cost of Construction Projects

It’s estimated that commercial construction can cost between $250 to $350 per square meter. As a construction manager, it’s essential to be aware of the costs associated with a project. By clearly understanding the average cost, you can better plan and budget for your project. Additionally, knowing the estimated cost allows you to compare it with the actual cost as the project progresses.

The average cost of construction projects can vary depending on multiple factors such as location, materials used, labor costs, and project complexity. For example, building a high-rise in a major city will likely cost more than constructing a single-story structure in a rural area.

Common Problems in Construction Projects

Aside from the initial budget, several factors can contribute to higher costs during construction projects. Here are some common problems that may inflate the cost of your project:

1. Budget Constraints

One of the most common roadblocks in any construction project is money. A project that exceeds its budget can have severe consequences for the company. Thus, construction managers should always monitor the budget, review it frequently, and, if necessary, adjust it accordingly.

Budget constraints can be mitigated in various ways, such as planning contingencies, setting aside funds for unexpected events, and taking advantage of cost-effective resources. By following these guidelines, construction managers can minimize financial risks and ensure their project stays on track.

2. Unforeseen Changes

Construction projects are often subject to change; sometimes, these changes can happen quickly. Unexpected weather conditions, new design requests, supplier delays, or other issues may arise, causing a domino effect throughout the project.

To deal with these changes, construction managers should immediately adapt to new situations by updating the schedule and deliverables. They must also assess the impact of the change and adjust other components of the plan accordingly.

3. Schedule Delays

Time is money in any industry, and the construction business is no exception. When site workers are behind schedule, it can cause a ripple effect of delays. These delays can cost as much as $15 million annually for individual projects. Poor weather conditions, broken equipment, and lack of resources are some common reasons for such schedule disruptions.

A construction manager should take a proactive approach to avoid such schedule delays. This approach might include creating realistic schedules and contingency plans for potential disruptions, ensuring adequate resources and supplies, and closely tracking progress to intervene when deadlines are missed.

4. Communication Barriers

Communication is critical in a construction project where multiple parties are involved. Collaboration between clients, architects, contractors, and site workers is essential to ensure everyone understands the scope and goals of the project, including safety procedures, materials and equipment, and deadlines.

Communication barriers can arise with misunderstandings, lack of clarity, or hidden agendas. A construction manager should, therefore, encourage open communication among the parties and make sure everyone knows the details of the project. Weekly meetings, periodic site visits, and an open-door policy are some practices that can help break down the communication barriers.

5. Falls

Big construction projects are vulnerable to accidents, and falls are one of the leading causes of workplace fatalities. To prevent such tragedies, proper safety equipment, including robust synthetic web slings, must be used. These slings are designed to withstand heavy loads and provide a secure grip for workers at elevated heights. Additionally, it’s cheaper than hiring cranes or forklifts to lift and move materials around the site.

Construction projects can be challenging, but with proper planning and management, these challenges can be overcome. By understanding the average cost of construction projects, being aware of common problems that may arise, and taking proactive measures to address them, construction managers can ensure their project stays on track and within budget.