There’s nothing more stressful than a construction project running behind schedule. And when an already-delayed project moves into an inefficient defecting period, things only get worse.
It’s a near-impossible task to meet looming PC deadlines when you are reliant on spreadsheets, or even worse – pen and paper.
So, what is the fallout of a sloppy defecting process? And how can you avoid it?
The implications fall into three categories:
1. Financial impacts
In the construction industry, PC deadlines and quality control are normally associated with financial rewards and penalties. That means that every defect counts, and so does every day.
One of ACCEDE’s construction customers described the temptation to “turn a blind eye” when a manual system of capturing defects was used. The problems came back to bite when it mattered most. “There is nothing worse than having to go back and rectify defects after demobilisation. What would have been an easy defect turns into a big problem.”
Another client describes how they use an automated system from ACCEDE to remain ultra-vigilant during the defects liability period (DLP). “It provides assurance that everything is done and we will get money in the bank faster.”
When you look at what it costs to use an automated system vs the financial risks and rewards, it’s simply a no-brainer to tackle construction delays.
2. Legal and reputational
In the worst-case scenario, poorly-managed defect management and construction delays end up in court. In the news recently has been the construction of the new Royal Adelaide Hospital, Australia’s most expensive building. A court case is in play “over the many defects that cannot be fixed”. (The Australian)
Australia’s construction industry is small enough that news travels fast, and reputations are made on quality control. A tight defect management process enables a smooth handover and minimises opportunities for dispute.
It should be noted that recent legal changes may affect contractual obligations for the Defect Liability Period, as explained by Thomson Geer in a recent article.
3. Wasted resources
Here’s a secret. Employees and contractors want to work with purpose. It’s one of the key drivers in engagement, which has many flow on effects on turnover and productivity. Slogging it out on inefficient spreadsheets isn’t working with purpose. Chasing contractors to rectify defects using chaotic systems isn’t working with purpose. Letting defects slip through the cracks isn’t working with purpose.
Instead, imagine a scenario where you are proactive and rigorous about defect management, with the right tools and communication. A customer of ours described how they include ACCEDE in their induction and when executing agreements with subcontractors.
“The dashboard is a great tool for project team meetings. The project manager or site manager can table defects on a weekly basis at these meetings and look at who’s got the issues – is it a contractor, internal person, are the defects being closed out? It’s also useful at subcontractor meetings, and if there are difficulties getting contractors to close out, we use the data to delay month end payments. It’s there in black and white.”
With a determined focus on quality and the right tools, you can lift your quality game. This has many tangible business benefits, but it’s also a great way to pull your team together with renewed focus and pride in the job they do. ACCEDE is an automated construction quality system designed to greatly improve the defect management process and minimise construction delays.