Construction Management for Estate Projects

Facilitating communication to manage a highly functioning team
The most important task in a high-end estate project is to assemble the right professional team at the outset. A principal may or may not already have an architect, interior designer or contractor with whom they have a good relationship, but many other professionals are required: entitlements expediter, engineers, consultants and landscape designers, etc. A construction project has an enormous number of “moving parts”: a successful project demands that the professionals involved are experienced, have the same mind-set, and are team players with complimentary skill sets – and that they are managed to bring out their best work to meet the vision and goals of the project.

Assembling the right professional team:Choosing the best professionals for your project is more than a matter of design and inspiration. An over-the-top design that is impractical or beyond the owner’s budget is of questionable value.You must set yourself up for success by realistically evaluating an the different firm’s temperamental and procedural compatibility with the owner and the balance of the project team. All too often, for example, the firms may be excellent in conceptual design without the ability to produce drawings on time and in sufficient detail for the contractor to build efficiently. Which means that coordination and communication are key. As the first construction chain of command, it is typically the owners rep’s role to facilitate communications between the team members. If the correct team has been assembled, coordination of the design and engineering has been done properly, and planning and preconstruction are correct, problems will have been anticipated and mitigated. That way, the General Contractor can accomplish the project smoothly, on time and within budget. During the construction phase, constant presence on-site serves to monitor the contractors’ work, coordinate any remaining engineering and all the owner’s consultants, perform quality control inspections and manage the budget and schedule.

The balance in every project will be different. Reliance on the construction manager to manage the hard construction issues will enable the rest of the employees to attend to their own domain. The goal is for the workers to have the level of input needed, and still have sufficient time to perform their usual duties. If there are decisions to be made, the construction manager will present these in a timely, organized manner to the appropriate party. A good construction manager will protect the owner from unnecessary liability, will centralize communication and act as project liaison to fully and seamlessly integrate all project participants, all while saving money, accelerating schedule and ensuring quality. A good construction manager is truly an impartial advocate for the owner and for the whole project team.