Project schedules – we love them and we hate them but in facility contracting projects we can’t live without them. If you’re less familiar with the world of facility contracting, a project schedule is created in order to identify which smaller tasks need to be completed by who and by when, in order to keep the larger project moving on time.  We use them to see if our team is taking too long on something and we need to quickly jump in with a contingency plan, to tell us when key materials must be ordered and sent to the job site and to discuss overall project progress when meeting with our client to discuss their facility contracting project.

Some Facility Contracting Projects Where Project Schedules Saved The Day

For one of our facility contracting build outs at FIU, once we received our Purchase Order for the Renovation Project, we created our draft schedule. We then held a meeting with the Project Manager and the end user. At this time we discussed the logistics of the project in comparison with the user’s needs. Part of the project involved fabricating and installing multiple storefront glass systems. Upon review of the schedule and the lead time of the storefronts, we proposed to the Project Manager to construct the space over the December holiday break during which time the storefronts were still being fabricated. We completed the space over the break and returned one month later to install the storefronts when fabrication was completed. This allowed the user to continue teaching in the only available classroom, and students to not be interrupted since the majority of the work was completed while the University was closed. The project was completed ahead of schedule.

At Nicklaus Children’s Hospital during one of our facility contracting build outs there, during the construction process the hospital had an unscheduled surprise inspection by the State ACHA department (those are always fun). This State agency is involved with the certification and operation of hospitals in the State of Florida. During the two week long inspection, interior construction work was not allowed. This unforeseen delay could have caused the project completion to not meet necessary move in dates. At the time of the inspection the job was 2 days ahead of schedule. During the inspection the schedule was adjusted with the facility, sub-contractors and suppliers in order to make up for the stop work time. A vigorous schedule was created with all member buy-in. Working together, supplementing hours and working with the County Building Department inspectors, the job was completed 2 days prior to the required date. Hurray for the project schedule!

At FIU during our Labor Center facility contracting build out, once we received our Purchase Order for the 2nd Floor Renovation Project, we created our draft schedule. We then scheduled a meeting with the Project Manager and the end user. At this time we discussed the logistics of the project in comparison with the user’s need. This project involved a complete renovation of several offices, a conference room and kitchen. The user needed the project to happen over a period of 1 month including winter break (you may be starting to see a pattern with the needs of education construction projects!). We modified our draft schedule and adjusted work shifts to provide two shift workdays over the winter break. This allowed us to compress the schedule and meet the user’s requested completion date. We updated the schedule on this project multiple times per week to ensure that all materials would be on site when needed and subcontractors would have the proper time to schedule themselves accordingly.

Preparing a project schedule for a facility contracting project may not be the most fun part of the job (think of it like doing your taxes as compared to actually running your business), but it is so critical to keeping a project running on time and on budget that there simply is no substitute, even for smaller facility contracting projects.  We simply won’t live without them!