The larger the construction project, the more that can go wrong during any step of the process from the design creation through project closeout. The key factors in ensuring a construction project is successful is understanding things that may cause delays and then to implementing a plan to manage and schedule these issues before they become big problems.   

Given that construction is inherently complex, and delays are more the norm rather than the exception, it is very important to have a schedule that was built with best practices in mind.

Here are a few key reasons why schedule quality is important from the start of the project.

It’s Realistic

A schedule of high quality requires a lot of thought and input, particularly around trade flow, resource constraints and logic.  A key factor in the effectiveness and feasibility of a schedule is whether or not it is risk adjusted. People who put in enough time to build a schedule of high quality will have thought about risk, which inevitably makes it more accurate and achievable..

It’s Logical

There are a lot of moving parts in construction, and inherently more things that don’t go as planned as the ones that do.  In order to effectively develop and manage schedules one must have ALL the necessary logic in place. All too often people make mistakes, such as;  having too many constraints, neglecting trade logic and stacking trades with too many start to start and finish to finish ties. If logic is missing, the schedule has a lot of float embedded in it, which usually results in delays going undetected until late in the game.  Having more logic is always better, and crew logic is a must!

It’s easy to understand

A quality schedule requires that it is straightforward, succinct and not too detailed.  Most people working on the site (albeit the ones with a sophisticated PM team) believe the schedule is the “Bible”.  As such, it is shared with all and essentially the road map towards the completion of a successful project. It needs to be understood, and let’s face it, a 40 page chart isn’t that simple to comprehend. So, one must do their best to make it “speak” to the trades, which in turn, will only facilitate better understanding and appreciation of the overall schedule.  

Garbage In Garbage Out

The opposite of a high quality schedule is one of low quality, which is essentially garbage.  If a schedule is not of high quality, the PM teams will basically be managing without a plan. This may not be a problem early on, but once the trades really start moving, delays and inefficiencies will get buried and no one will know until it becomes apparent that the schedule is unachievable —usually about 4 months prior to the original planned completion.  

The Bottom Line

Delivering a project on time relies on good management of the development process, assessing timeframes realistically, choosing the right professionals to work with, and anticipating unforeseen issues that may come up. By developing a high quality schedule up front, stakeholders reduce the overall risk of the job in a big way, especially if the schedule is updated and analyzed frequently. SmartPM Tech is a technology that ensures schedules are of high quality and are managed effectively throughout the entire project lifecycle.