Construction resource management sees the optimization of construction resources, such as labor and equipment. Resource management specifically seeks to allocate resources efficiently to improve efficiency and reduce construction delays.
It increases efficiency, particularly by minimizing the risk of duplicated work and construction waste. It also seeks to reduce delays by increasing productivity and identifying risk mitigation strategies that managers can use to counter risk.
Benefits of construction resource management
The main benefit of construction resource management is that project managers will have a full understanding of the number of resources at their disposal. Project managers can then reduce risk if they better understand labor availability. That way, it becomes easy to plan workloads and accurately estimate when a construction project will be completed.
Project managers can also accurately allocate resources, such as labor and equipment. This eliminates the risk of under or overutilization of resources.
Other benefits of resource management include the following.
Resource management helps construction managers create better forecasts. Managers can then accurately estimate the completion date of a project since they’ll be fully aware of resource availability. The same data is also used to estimate a realistic recovery plan.
Project owners can increase profits using construction resource management platforms like ALICE. This optioneering platform lets project managers allocate resources efficiently, track material usage, optimize resource schedules, and effectively coordinate different labor teams. This helps increase profit and reduce risk.
Enhanced communication at the construction site
Resource management makes it easy for different construction teams to coordinate and better understand what is required of them. Better communication reduces misunderstandings, especially when several projects are required to be done at once. In addition, enhanced project transparency enhances employee engagement, which increases productivity.
You get a 360 view of the entire project
Having a 360 view of a construction project is essential, especially when dealing with a large construction project. The larger a construction project, the riskier it is to implement.
Project managers with a 360 view of their project can identify opportunities and threats before they cause delays. Also, with a 360-degree view, construction managers can more efficiently allocate resources.
7 common construction resource management errors to avoid
1. Failure to create or confirm a contract
Construction contracts are important in resource management because they protect the company from legal lawsuits.
A good construction contract should be comprehensive and include details like the scope of work, deliverables, and execution timelines. It’s also important to have a penalty clause in case the project owner delays funding. Project owners can also use a penalty clause to punish contractors who do not deliver as promised.
The contract should also have a termination clause based on the non-performance of either the project owner or contractor. Contractors should also sign contracts with subcontractors detailing the scope of work and penalty clauses in case of an error caused by the subcontractor.
2. Hiring unskilled labor
According to a report, there are more than 440,000 unfilled construction positions in the United States. This labor shortage, if not controlled, has the potential to significantly slow down the construction industry. It can also result in higher labor expenses, increasing the overall cost of construction.
Project managers should not hire unskilled construction workers when planning and allocating labor, even if they may be tempted to do so. Though unskilled construction workers might help fill temporary positions, they can become a liability in the long run. An example is when a floor is built using the wrong measurements. This can cause significant loss and delay.
3. Poor scheduling
One error construction managers make when creating a resource management plan is poor scheduling. A construction schedule is a detailed plan that describes how a construction project will be implemented. It includes details like the activities to be done, resources required, and timelines for completing identified activities.
A schedule may be full of errors when a contractor allocates resources (such as equipment) to non-existent tasks. Similarly, the manager might assign resources (such as labor) to tasks that don’t require an additional workforce.
4. Failure to have a risk assessment plan
Another error project managers make when creating a resource management plan is the failure to develop a risk assessment strategy. Risk assessment is the process of identifying risks and developing mitigation strategies. If the risks are inevitable, the manager should develop a mitigation plan.
A risk management plan is crucial for the success of a construction project because it enables the project owners to be proactive instead of reactive to emerging threats. By being proactive, threats will be controlled before they cause delays.
5. Using inaccurate estimates
Construction estimates predict how much a project will require to be implemented successfully. When calculating a project estimate, the project manager must factor in the scope, rough timeline, cost of materials, hiring labor, and equipment. Wrong cost estimates mean a resource management plan full of errors.
A common resource management error is, for example, a construction project requiring 100,000 bags of cement, but an estimate of 90,000 bags being confirmed. If not rectified on time, this can cause the construction project to stall.
6. Not having an efficient ordering process
A good resource management plan is helpful if resources are made available on time. Remember: material, labor, and equipment are all connected. Construction workers cannot build if they don’t have the right materials. Similarly, a site cannot be cleared without heavy equipment like bulldozers and excavators.
Therefore, project managers should have an efficient ordering process broken down into realistic milestones.
7. Poor communication among team members
For the resource management plan to be effective, senior managers should promote effective communication. Team leaders need to know what is required of them, and should be fully aware of the available resources they have at their disposal. This is important because it eliminates the over or underutilization of resources.
In conclusion, resource management is not only used to increase profits, but can also reduce waste and protect the construction project from unforeseen risks. However, for the plan to be effective, project managers must ensure that they use accurate construction schedules.