Very few things in life are certain, but there is one you can count on to be true: No matter how much you plan, something will come along that requires a change, especially when you’re managing a construction job.
Sure, there’s a scope, budget, schedule and contract documents that everyone wants to stick to, but despite these plans, something will surely prompt a deviation. It could be differing field conditions, oversights or mistakes in the plans, resource availability or something beyond anyone’s control. As a successful project manager, it’s your duty to be prepared for the inevitability of change with a change request management process.
Well-managed construction projects are ones that have documented procedures and processes. If one of your foremen finds that site conditions are different from what the plans indicate, you usually can’t unilaterally decide to make changes to the plans to accommodate the differing conditions. You’ll need to run these changes by the owner/client as well as the engineer or architect who is responsible for the design. You need to formally notify all stakeholders of the need for a change through a change request or a change order request.
Any deviation to the original plan requires a change request. When you entered a contract for the job, you did so with the terms and conditions outlined according to an original plan:
Depending on your contractual agreement, there may be other terms that dictate how the work will be performed or other conditions for acceptance by the owner. These could be requirements related to quality control, safety management and subcontracts. Any change to the original plan should initiate the change request process.
Contractual changes should always be formally documented, so a change request form is necessary to record the following information:
Regardless of the size of your project, you want your processes to be consistent and standardized. This is conducive to better project management, especially related to document control, project closeout and formal and informal audits. Having a standardized, formal process means a more efficient change request process flow.
Imagine having to come up with a different change request form on a multi-year project with hundreds of deviations from the original project. A form or template takes all the guesswork out of figuring out what needs to be included in the change request. Moreover, a standardized form helps all parties know what to expect when (and not if) a change is needed.
When a change is necessary, it’s not only important to have a procedure for processing requests, but it’s also necessary to have one that moves quickly. Imagine having to make a change due to an emergency on site. Suppose a natural disaster or government-imposed embargo makes certain materials unavailable. The change order process should be expedited, avoiding causing undue impact to the project. In other words, if a change requires a month’s worth of work to be added to the schedule, processing the change order request should not have an adverse effect on the project progress itself.
Fluix is your one-stop, cloud-based go-to for automating the change request process flow. You can quickly complete forms and route them to all interested parties for review and approval. Automatically track the progress on any mobile device without special coding or unique operating systems. This flexible, scalable, powerful platform puts you in control for a better way to manage change on your projects. Say goodbye to missing change information, long processing times and improper documentation. Get started today with a 14-day, no-obligation trial that doesn’t require a credit card.