Key responsibilities of a construction project manager

key responsibilities of a construction project manager

What are the responsibilities of a project manager in construction?

Not all construction project managers know what they do all the time. Sometimes, they get too overwhelmed with so many tasks and with the multiple stakeholders they have to communicate with.

The construction project manager is the key figure of the construction project team. Without the project manager, the team will fail hard. Imagine what would happen if the project manager doesn’t know what to do with the team?

Read more: Quick guide to Lean practices for construction professionals

This article is written to show both present and future construction project managers on what to pay attention to. Developing the following key responsibilities will allow them to manage the teams and the overall project better. These skills will also help individual project managers further their careers.

1. Planning

The construction project manager not only needs to plan his work but also lay out the tasks for his team. A thorough project manager needs to forecast and determine the work that needs to be done for the proposed project. A project manager’s responsibilities include:

  •      Preparing work for the whole team
  •      Estimating costs
  •      Developing deliverable schedules as a roadmap for the construction team
  •      Following the project in case there is a need to handle or supervise some tasks
  •      Reviewing the project in depth to determine if everything is done according to plan

Recently, lots of helpful and handy (smart) tools have been developed to help the project manager do a better job.

2. Hire, fire and supervise

The project manager is considered the boss on the construction site. The project manager is responsible for getting the right people to handle all the tasks for a single project. Hiring and firing people are probably the hardest things to do. Supervising comes as the cherry on top – this part sometimes gets a little difficult and complex because of the need to pay attention to the details that someone in the team has missed. The project manager has to do all the coordinating and directing the construction workers.

3. Set goals

Setting goals is what the construction project managers often forget about. It’s one of the most important responsibilities that the project manager usually end up skipping.

The project manager needs to set specific goals signed by the client and do everything to meet the goals. On top of that, the PM is in charge of reviewing the contractual conditions of performance, determining the precision of the work, handling requirements and deliverables, etc. The goals establish how many workers and types of supplies are needed. Project managers who got everything ready with set goals usually end up being the most successful ones.

4. On time

There are several construction project managers I’ve worked with in the past. They were always on time. The project was completed even ahead of time. I still collaborate with the same people. It was a difficult path I needed to walk to find them. The previous construction project managers were always a week or month late with one single project and that’s unacceptable.

A job comes with a specific set of constraints and objectives. There is a huge time frame in which everything needs to be ready. Time is crucial because there are many penalties included against the builder if the project is late.

5. Stay on budget

Construction projects are commercial endeavours. As the project manager, you need to keep the money in mind while planning the whole project and work. The key is in estimation. There are software that could help you get the job done more effectively.

When the project starts, you are the one who needs to make sure the crew doesn’t go above the budget. See costs, estimate, compare and cut unnecessary costs to stay within budget limits.

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