Five warning signs that your project is heading for trouble

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  1. All valid pointers especially item 3. However Clients who look for the quick fix and rely on “free” work pre-contract can create all these symptoms.

    Who decides the level of risk is the question. The bank’s representative?? The Lawyer?? The project team????

    Could it be that all are hiding away relying on the “Contract’ to muddle through.

    I started my career in the Building Industry in 1965. Are we still floundering!!!

  2. Some very good pointers here that all Ops Directors should be passing onto their teams as basic guidelines.

    The industry will only improve when the SME market manages to stop looking at the procurement process and a transfer of risk rather than doing the works in the correct way for the right price.

    This is not just a contractor or subcontractor issue it starts with Clients, then Professional teams and Principal Contractors we all are too focused on risk transfer and making it someone else’s problem whilst piously sitting there stating we have done the right thing and expecting others to do what we are commercially scared to action. Shame on Clients, Professionals and PCs.

  3. I understand No.1 all too well, having spent enough time in my career in Architecture fixing avoidable mistakes in order to avoid bigger problems, just in the nick of time.

    I’ve spent the last 3 years on a 6-building project highlighting design failures, often enough being ignored by the people who either created the problem, or who have been complicit in allowing it to become a problem through their own inaction or their blocking resolution of issues.

    [It was all in my head apparently, and then they ‘fessed up]

    It’s depressing to be highlighting design and coordination problems, and for your trouble, being completely ignored; until the Contractor realises its a problem and then raises an RFI and only then the designers start to deal with it.

    Lately, I’m simply giving up bothering, no one wants to know!

  4. At point 4, “if a contractor is experienced, reputable and presenting a realistic programme of works for a reasonable price then problems are less likely.”

    Well, yeah, right, good luck with that. In the last 25 years I have not seen a construction program that was not just plain junk and no better than window dressing. I have never met a lawyer, architect or QS who knows how to read or interpret a Gantt chart properly , or can identify any of the half dozen typical and common beginner’s mistakes. The planning and programming is universally woeful, and the progress tracking and reporting is worse.

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