If you are an experienced project manager, then you are familiar with concepts of contractor management and other processes related to project management. However, if you are new to site planning and project risk management, contractor management may sound new to you. You will need to understand this to work effectively with contractors.
Contractors play a very significant role in the success of a project, and they come in all shapes and sizes: some are great to work with whilst others are not so pleasant. It is necessary to control what they do as well as manage their preferences in order to ensure the project goes on as planned. Doing so can save valuable time trying to fix mistakes, make corrections, and reschedule after the project starts.
If your contractors are poorly managed there is a high risk that your project will be rescheduled frequently and your planned deadline or timeline will be missed. This could have detrimental effects.
Excuses provided by poor contractors are likely to include complaints about failure to locate materials, and other issues revolving around subcontractor failure. These are the typical excuses likely to delay your project completion time. Since contractor management is your responsibility, you bear the consequences of these excuses and actions. Therefore, their failure is your responsibility, just as their direction and success is.
Getting the Right Contractors to Do the Job by Following Proper Project Management Practices
Here is how to get the right people to do the job at the right place and in the right time:
Proper procurement planning is extremely essential and it is important to get this right for every project, as this is where a successful system starts. Make effort to design your selection criteria in advance including quality, capacity, and cost that the contractors should have so you can get the best and most suitable suppliers for your project.
After you get tenders, do get in touch with the referees provided and research the previous projects they have worked on. While the size of the contractor may not matter much, check and ensure the contractors ability to complete your projects, including the availability of resources you will need.
Also be sure to evaluate the subcontractors they use so that you can acquire enough information on suppliers and understand their commitments to delivering the best projects on time. The quality of subcontractors will give you an idea of the contractor commitment and performance you are likely to get.
Request for a proper scope of work and ensure they agree with your construction schedule and deliverables before selecting a specific supplier. Contractors may want to maintain an open scope but this won’t work well for you as the project costs may go up to cater for additional work not covered in the original specification.
Stick to the above supplier selection guidelines and half of the proper contractor management is catered for. This exercise reduces project risks and ensures that the work is completed on time and according to scope.