When taking on an electrical contracting job, it is imperative that you invest a good deal of time in careful electrical project planning with attention to detail. You should have a game plan for every step of the job including:
- The initial stages of electrical project planning and development
- The construction phase and project delivery
- Project close out
All members of the project team (such as construction project managers, engineers, estimators, foremen, etc.) should be involved in the electrical project planning process and should be in close communication with one another throughout the job in order to ensure that any changes to the plan are understood by all and to make certain that everything goes smoothly and according to plan.
Pre-Construction Electrical Project Planning
As soon as you receive a bid invitation, the electrical project planning process should commence. Project engineers, managers, and estimators must work closely together at this time to determine the cost value of the job. Utilizing design-build software and engaging in project planning meetings will allow estimators to get a firm grasp on how much the combined cost will be. These costs include:
- Design labor
- Field labor
By having a valid perception of the costs, an accurate proposal may be put together to win the job.
Once the bid has been awarded, the pre-construction project planning will continue to develop. Meetings with the project owner will require the involvement of all members of the electrical construction planning team in order to draft a firm scope of work, agree upon goals, and to determine a project schedule. These meetings will be crucial for drafting contracts and ensuring that all parties are on the same page with the project. Investing the time in pre-construction electrical project planning will go a long way for building lasting customer relationships, bettering construction quality, and preventing costly mistakes.
Construction Phase Electrical Project Planning
Even after the contracts have been signed and work has begun on your electrical project, the planning is far from being complete. In fact, it is a good practice to establish a schedule for regular project management and planning meetings with all affected parties on a weekly basis. The intention of these meetings is to keep everyone on the same page with regards to:
- What stages have been reached in the construction project
- Whether or not things are going according to schedule
- What has and has not been completed
- Any problems or potential problems with the project
- Any additional materials or labor that will be required to complete the project as directed
Construction phase project planning and management meetings should be accurately recorded into minutes which will serve as written documentation of each planning session. Should any changes need to be made to the original plan (i.e.: additional materials or man hours), these should be drafted onto a change order request which will break down the additional resources needed and the total cost change to the project. All affected parties should be required to sign off on the change order as approval before moving forward with any changes to the original plan.
Project Close-Out Electrical Project Planning
You must also have a plan in place for closing out your electrical project. As you draw near to the end of your job, you must work with your team to establish a plan for turning over any submittals, As-Built, and getting your construction project signed off by the building or electrical inspector of your city. You must also have a plan for handing off any manuals, training the project owners on utilizing their new electrical equipment, guarantee/warranty letters, etc.
Fixxbook can help you find a contractor that’s right for your job. We offer a number of useful resources for facilities managers. Check out the Resources for Facilities Management page to learn more about sourcing hardware and choosing the right electrical contractor for your job.