Jon Hall of GGLO walks through specific examples of Project Management. He’ll show us a project schedule, project work plan, and a construction budget. He will also explain how to handle change in scope and scope creep.

Practical Applications

I am a Principal and Project Manager here at GGLO Design in Seattle, Washington. Today, I am going to be talking with you about how we do project management at GGLO.

Secondly, we'll consult with our project team and find out, you know, what the duration of each task needs to be, as well as looking back at our history of how we've done projects in the past and just, you know, using that experience to build a project schedule. You know, an example here of a schedule that we've created, bar chart type of a schedule, just to be able to see to the notable overlapping processes of the design process, the jurisdiction may have their own process and timelines, and all the approvals that we need to get to work through a project from design through construction. So, once we have the schedule in place, then we can start building our project fee.

So, it's in consultation between the project manager and the project architect, and the production staff about what needs to happen when looking at the overall project schedule, and then breaking that down into more defined tasks. We have an example here of our typical project work plan where we just look at the different tasks that happen every week. Whether it's a design task, we may have a client meeting that's coming up and some deliverables that happen for that meeting.

Talk about the schedule, talk about milestones and just give the client updated information about the project design. We also have internal meetings, where we talk with the team on a weekly basis about, you know, about their tasks, about their roles and inform them of information that may have come back from our client meetings so that everybody's informed. We'll have consulting meetings, where we bring in the out of house people that are also involved with the project and make sure that they are all sharing knowledge.

Usually for smaller projects, that's what we'll do or for the first phases of a project that's just getting underway. As we move into the larger projects, we may use an AIA agreement, like this, this a B109 for a multi-family project. This is for again, for larger projects, more complex and with more risk and more liability for those types of projects.

And that's summed all the way up down to the bottom into a total construction budget that can be then divided by the cost per square foot of the total project to evaluate and compare to other historical information.

So oftentimes, a client will come back and ask for more, and it's important to evaluate that, it's important that the whole project team understands what their scope of work is, what they are responsible for, so that if you're in a meeting and a client comes to you and asks for more, to be able to say "Yes, we can absolutely do that, "but it's gonna take this much additional time, "it may take this much additional fee." And that's how we get through that. Scope creep, happens often, when either a client or a contractor will continue to ask for things. It's in our nature, being service professionals to want to please our clients, and so we'll often just keep on working.

They're our most senior architects, they have experience both in design and in construction, and they will follow a project through the life of a project, so they'll review it at schematic design, they'll review design development, and they'll review at construction documents to make sure that things are where they should be. The quality management and quality control process really looks at taking our lessons learned, taking any best practices that we may have evolved through projects in the past an' makin' sure they're spread across the office. With a large firm, things may happen on one project that another project may not know about, so those quality management reviewers are kind of our conduit of making sure that information is passed around, that our documents are proper and can be buildable and we don't have any errors, make sure things move forward smoothly.

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