Document management in the preconstruction phases of a Construction Project
Preconstruction is one of the most significant phases of a construction project. Yet, in the past, it was often considered a rather discrete transition period between the designing and building phases. However, this is no longer the case with the construction industry slowly embracing technology!
Companies across the globe are looking into ways to iron out the hiccups they face while in the preconstruction phase to ensure the smooth running of the overall project.
Construction project managers are now focused on improving communication in the preconstruction phase to drive success. Construction projects involve extensive paperwork and documentation that must be consistently shared, monitored, and modified during preconstruction.
Unfortunately, since most construction companies lack comprehensive software solutions for their processes, these documents are spread across disparate locations, making it difficult to collaborate or share information effectively.
The construction industry needs to invest in new integrated methods to ensure efficient document management and collaboration as it progresses. This article explores the document management challenges that typically occur in the preconstruction phase and how BUILDFitters can help overcome them.
What is preconstruction:
Preconstruction is the phase of a construction project that occurs before actual construction work begins. It includes all the planning, design, and preparation that takes place before the start of construction. During preconstruction, the project’s scope is defined, budgets and schedules are developed, and necessary approvals and permits are obtained.
The project’s design is also completed during preconstruction, and contractors may submit bids to complete the work. Once a contractor has been chosen, a preconstruction meeting is typically held to review the plans, schedule, and budget.
Preconstruction also includes procurement, in which the purchasing department orders any materials and equipment needed for the project. It also includes site preparation, in which the site is prepared for construction. Finally, the team begins mobilization, bringing in the personnel, equipment, and materials needed to start construction.
Challenges in Traditional Document Management
Traditional document management processes in the construction industry face several challenges during the preconstruction phase. These challenges include the reliance on paper-based documentation, which can lead to difficulties in organizing, storing, and retrieving information. Manual tracking of document versions can be time-consuming and prone to errors, making it challenging to maintain an accurate record of document changes.
Additionally, the lack of centralized storage often results in documents being scattered across different locations, making collaboration and sharing of information inefficient. These challenges hinder effective communication, decision-making, and timely access to critical project-related documents.
By embracing construction management software, such as BUILDFitters, construction companies can overcome these challenges by implementing centralized document storage, version control features, and streamlined collaboration tools.
This enables efficient document management, simplifies workflows, and improves overall productivity during the preconstruction phase.
Effective document management during the preconstruction phase:
Effective document management during the preconstruction phase of a new construction project is crucial for ensuring the smooth and successful execution of the project.
Construction management software can manage and organize documents throughout a construction project. Some common features of document management in construction management software include:
- Document storage: Construction management software often consists of a centralized repository for storing and organizing all project-related documents, such as plans, drawings, contracts, and reports.
- Version control: It is important to track document changes as a project progresses. Construction management software can help with this by maintaining a record of different versions of each document and allowing users to view previous versions.
- Collaboration: Construction management software can facilitate collaboration between team members by allowing them to access and edit documents in real-time. This can help to ensure that everyone has the most up-to-date information.
- Document approval: Some construction management software includes a document approval process, in which specific team members must review and approve documents before being finalized.
- Document security: Construction management software often includes features to help ensure the security and confidentiality of sensitive documents. This may include user authentication, access controls, and data encryption.
Importance of Effective Communication in the Preconstruction Phase
Effective communication is a crucial factor in the success of the preconstruction phase. In this phase, numerous stakeholders, including architects, contractors, engineers, and clients, collaborate to define project scope, develop budgets and schedules, and obtain necessary approvals. Clear and efficient communication among these stakeholders ensures that everyone is aligned, reducing the likelihood of misunderstandings, delays, and errors.
It allows for timely modifications, proactive problem-solving, and effective decision-making. By embracing technology and utilizing construction management software like BUILDFitters, project managers can facilitate seamless communication by providing real-time access to project-related documents, enabling collaboration, and maintaining version control.
Improved communication leads to enhanced coordination, transparency, and ultimately, a successful preconstruction phase.
Advancements in Technology for Preconstruction
The preconstruction phase of construction projects has witnessed significant advancements in technology that are revolutionizing document management. Building Information Modeling (BIM), virtual reality, drones, and cloud-based solutions have emerged as powerful tools in streamlining the preconstruction process. BIM, for instance, enables the creation of detailed 3D models that encompass various aspects of the project, facilitating better visualization and coordination among stakeholders.
Virtual reality technology allows for immersive virtual walkthroughs, aiding in design reviews and identifying potential issues before construction begins. Drones are being used to conduct aerial surveys, gather accurate site data, and monitor progress. Cloud-based solutions provide centralized storage, easy access to documents, real-time collaboration, and enhanced security.
These technological advancements are transforming preconstruction document management by improving accuracy, efficiency, and collaboration, leading to more successful construction projects.
BUILDFitters – streamlined document management across the entire construction project:
BUILDFitters is a construction management software designed to streamline all aspects of a construction project. It is a solution that combines various software tools and systems to organize, monitor, and refine construction project processes for all stakeholders.
BUILDFitters simplifies and automates many complexities of modern-day construction management, including document management. BUILDFitters moves all construction data to the cloud, now saved in a secure, centralized repository and easily accessible to all stakeholders.
Furthermore, cloud storage allows users permission management, version-tracking, co-editing, and many other features that save time, cost, and effort for construction project managers.
BUILDFitters’ preconstruction module provides a wide range of document management and automation features that either eliminate the need to produce documentation or streamline the process for easy access to required documentation.
BUILDFitters facilitates documentation across bidding management, project management, contract management, in-negotiation collaboration, procurement, and team collaboration functions.
BUILDFitters allows construction project managers to save time and effort manually creating and awarding bids with digitized bids that can be transferred from the sales pipeline.
This eliminates the need for excel documents allowing for a much more efficient and productive approach. Additionally, BUILDFitters estimating capabilities enable managers to estimate from anywhere on any device.
BUILDFitters enables construction project managers to handle project budgets effortlessly by providing access to all estimation details, material purchase orders, and subcontractor services on a dashboard, eliminating complex processes and data silos.
With just one click, the system automatically generates and stores purchase orders and subcontractor contracts in a secure document location. Additionally, BUILDFitters offers project managers complete access to project summaries and team information, both internal and owner-related, in one comprehensive view.
Managers can easily populate service types within the dashboard using templatized features for scope of work, inclusions, and exclusions, eliminating the need for excessive paperwork. Furthermore, BUILDFitters facilitates equipment data and documentation tracking by providing real-time access to information on quantity, vendor, and price within the dashboard.
BUILDFitters, a cloud-based construction management software, saves project managers time and paperwork in contract management with user-friendly dashboards.
In the preconstruction phase, the contract management module streamlines contract creation from estimates with a single click. BUILDFitters automates contract creation, imports schedules from awarded bids, and manages multiple contracts efficiently, eliminating the need for paper documentation.
With the BUILDFitters in-negotiation feature, project managers can easily access an auto-populated list of all the products and services they have in the preconstruction module. This means they no longer must maintain cumbersome lists on their notepads, phones, or computers.
They can easily access all the information they need from the dashboard and say goodbye to long, confusing documents. For example, they can select their preferred subcontractors, vendors, and suppliers by comparing the proposals and related communication.
They can also benefit from one-click proposals and update product and service requests in the module without leaving the dashboard. Additionally, project managers can protect negotiations from disputes and manual, error-prone documentation by taking the negotiation documentation to the cloud.
BUILDFitters gives project managers easy access to the information they need to purchase during the preconstruction phase. This effectively streamlines purchase order (PO) requests as the POs are automatically populated and simplify the complex process of purchase order creation and management.
Additionally, due to BUILDFitter’s advanced document management capabilities, project managers can streamline purchasing requisitions with a comprehensive view of data, approval processes, and progress to save time and costs.
BUILDFitters allows project managers to communicate efficiently with project and contract teams by leveraging Office 365 and Microsoft Teams’ advanced collaborative capabilities.
They can automatically create a project team with Microsoft Teams and keep track of all preconstruction-related correspondence in the team chat. Furthermore, they can share files, messages, and pictures in the chat without security and privacy concerns. BUILDFitters is a robust platform supporting multiple collaborative integrations.
Users can conduct video meetings for up to 10,000 people using Microsoft Teams’ cloud calling and real-time chatting features. BUILDFitters’ construction management solution enables preconstruction teams to overcome geographical limitations with a shared calendar view and filtered access to project emails in Office 365.
If you want to learn more about our case studies, look here.
BUILDFitters is a fully integrated construction management software covering all aspects of the preconstruction phase. Its cloud capabilities and added functionalities streamline document management, whether simple team notes or complex contract documents – BUILDFitters has a dedicated feature.
If you want to take an outsider approach to document management, Capterra has a list of software reviewing document management.
Since many construction project managers are shifting their focus to improving their communication and data management in the preconstruction phase, they need to invest in tools like BUILDFitters that help them consistently monitor, share, and simplify project-related documents and paperwork.
Contact us today to learn how BUILDFitters can benefit your construction company!