Systems for Maintaining the Schedule

5m 56s

In this ARE 5.0 Project Management Exam Prep course you will learn about the topics covered in the ARE 5.0 PjM exam division. A complete and comprehensive curriculum, this course will touch on each of the NCARB objectives for the ARE 5.0 Project Management Exam.

Instructor Mike Newman will discuss issues related to office standards, development of project teams and overall project control of client, fee and risk management.

When you are done with this course, you will have a thorough understanding of the content covered in the ARE 5.0 Project Management Exam including quality control, project team configuration and project scheduling.

As we talk about these scheduling issues one of the things that you've heard me mention a number of times is the idea of a sort of coordination and what are the systems for having these conversations. A couple of key things that must happen, a project manager has to be reviewing the current billing so has to be going through, how many hours have been spent, the idea of a time sheet, they're collecting the time sheets they know how many hours by each of the different logical players involved and they're reviewing that and keeping on top of that information.

If you're not doing that, there's no way to know whether you're on track or not, in terms of how much fee has been spent through the project. The other thing is those idea of regular meetings. Now, I'm a believer in meetings, I like having meetings, I think it makes sense, it's one of those spots where information comes through, if it's all done through memo or something, it has a certain kind of flavor to it, there's something about an in person meeting that allows sort of side types of information that you wouldn't necessarily get from just an email or a text or a memo or something, so I'm personally a fan of the idea of having regular meetings, but I will also say that Ncarb is very specifically a fan of having regular meetings, that they often will kind of assume that the logical answer is gonna be something like, what's the best way to keep a good coordination?

Well the answer is almost always gonna be, you should have monthly meetings, you should have bi weekly meetings, or you should have weekly meetings, or whatever is appropriate to the scale of the project.

That is one of those opportunities to have those discussions that gets not just the straight forward questions answered, but also all those moments where somebody's sitting at the table and they hear somebody else talking about something, they say, oh yeah, we got the crane coming in for the HVAC equipment and they're like oh wait, there's a crane coming in, we need a crane for the piece of equipment for this other thing, we need the steel needs to be able to get craned in or something like that, so there's those moments of information that can transpire at that spot, that can make everything more efficient.

Endless meetings can be boring and inefficient, of course. But the gist of the expectation is always gonna be regularize and have meetings, be in front of each other and have it be a regular formal system.

It's an informal discussion, but it's a formal system of that informal discussion, and at that, those regular meetings, both in house with the staff, but also with all of your consultants, and also with your clients at regular intervals, not necessarily the same meetings but sometimes, and that idea of those regular meetings is a way to assure everybody knows what's going on, so that if there's important information to be had, that information should bubble up at those meetings.

The other thing, as we talk about these schedule elements, one of the key elements is the idea of realistic deadlines, I already mentionned the idea about leaving time in the schedule for the client to review or for code officials to review, whatever it happens to be, maybe bankers to review, there's a lot of different people potentially, in a project, who may have to have a say about whether something moves on, and if you're saying, well it's gonna take us 40 days to do this work, and you give the schedule to the client and you say alright here's the schedule and it's 40 days, that means there's not leeway in there for anybody to have a moment where they go through and think about it and show their spouse, and you know, what do you think, or talk to a banker or whatever it happens to be, you've made it so tight that it's not really believable, and that can only come back to hurt you, so the idea that you're being realistic about these elements is hugely important.

And then the idea that you have thorough communication, the thorough communication, when I say that, what I'm talking about is, there's a sort of funny line that has to be walked, you're looking to be redundant in the sense that there is nothing that can slide through and not be considered that it's been communicated clearly, but not so redundant that you can have misinformation, that's one of the interesting things about this kind of work is that we always try very hard not to have the same information in two locations, when we're talking about a set of design drawings or contract documents, but when it comes to keeping track of design decisions and information from these various meetings and various things that are going on, it is important to keep the base notes for when you are walking through, you know, you're scratching your notes through the site visit, or the notes that you had for the design meeting around the conference table, that you've got some way of keeping those notes, maybe you scan them, keep them in a set file or something, but then there's also an official version of that information that gets maybe bullet pointed or becomes, this decision was made on Friday and here's two reasons why, and this is the implication from it, so there's some distillation of that information that becomes something that can be sent around to everybody, so what I'm saying here is that, there's these regular meetings, there's this whole process but that you also are then using that information to keep solid track of it, and having it at multiple levels of information, so I have a base information, but then I have the information that's distilled down and given out to everybody, so everybody has a clear access to all the decisions that have been made.

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From the course:
ARE 5.0 Project Management Exam Prep

Duration: 15h 26m

Author: Mike Newman