Construction projects are notoriously taxing. Diving into a project without a well thought execution plan causes project delays and wastage of resources. However, employing construction schedule templates enables you to define the method and sequence of your construction project. With so much at stake, you shouldn’t leave anything to chance.
In this post, you’ll find how to make a construction schedule, the best practices, and how to ensure your contractor adheres to the timeline.
What Is a Construction Schedule?
A construction schedule comprehensively describes the chronological sequence of construction activities from start to finish and the resources allocated to each activity. Essentially the construction schedule is a blueprint of materials required, milestones, start and completion date for each activity, budget schedule, and dependencies between different tasks.
What Is a Construction Schedule Template?
A construction schedule template is a predesigned construction schedule you fill with details of your project timeline. There are different templates for each type of construction work.
Construction Schedule Templates & Examples
Why Use a Construction Schedule?
The essence of a construction schedule is to guide the execution of construction activities from start to completion in a specified time, with each involved party delivering on their end. Other major reasons to use a construction schedule are:
You can allocate assets to each particular task through a construction project schedule. Efficient resource allocation ensures you are not strapped for resources which causes delay.
Alternatively, you can use the construction schedule to outline responsibilities to every individual. You can then use the schedule as a reference to take any action for failed or delayed duty.
A well thought construction schedule allows greater project stability. The schedule gets down to minute details that prevent significantly damaging unforeseen events.
Predicting cash flow forecasts is one essential element to completing your project on time. The construction schedule allows you to predict cash flows for constructors to ensure there are funds available for each activity.
Things to Consider Before Preparing a Construction Schedule
Important points to consider before making an effective construction schedule are:
- Understand the whole project first. Sit with the involved parties to comprehend the activities required and tentative dates for each.
- Enlist all the activities and the constraints.
- Establish project milestones.
- Determine the sequence of events in order of priority to save you time when including them in your schedule.
- Ensure you have projected cash flows ready.
- Establish task interdependencies and execution sequences.
How to Make a Construction Schedule
Proper drafting of a construction schedule is pivotal to the project’s success. However, due to the intricate nature of a construction project, many contractors and home developers fail to design effective construction schedules. We breakdown the steps you will follow to ensure you create a good construction schedule:
Step1) Assemble a List of All the Resources Needed
Construction involves a lot of stakeholders and resources. Usually, a sit-down with subcontractors, building materials suppliers, financial institutions, and construction officers enables you to make sound time estimations for your project.
Tip: Liaise with your state construction department weeks before you begin building. State departments are notorious for their work backlog. Early approval is crucial to ensure you start your project as specified in your construction schedule.
When talking to the relevant parties, identify any potential bottlenecks and how they are cushioned against them. It is good practice to ensure constant and reliable cash flow to prevent project delays.
Step 2) Identify and Prioritize Construction Activities
Once you have gathered the list of all resources you need, enlist construction activities and prioritize them in sequential order. Talk to the subcontractors and contractors to understand how and when they can deliver on a particular task. Remember that the more thorough you prioritize your activities, the more accurate your schedule is.
Step 3) Assign Responsibilities and Resources
Assign clear duties to each party and the specific timeline to perform a certain task. Delegate procurement to different individuals from your masons on the ground to prevent delivery delays and efficiently track your construction cost.
Assign each milestone its budget rather than an overall blanket budget. You will still need to compile the milestones budget to get a sound estimation cost.
Step 4) Create a Roadmap
Outline the tentative start and completion dates for each task. Dedicate a reasonable timeline for each activity. Remember, no construction schedule is written in stone. You may need to make changes as you go on.
Step 5) Review and Share
Before sharing your construction schedule with the contractor and other involved entities, ensure that your schedule is up to date with other factors such as local code construction policies, procurement cost, and time, among other on and off-site issues. Share the schedule with everyone in your construction project to ensure successful construction within the timeline.
How to Make a Construction Schedule in Excel
Excel is one of the most used software to design schedules due to its easy-to-use templates. Follow the following steps to create your construction schedule:
1) Open a blank spreadsheet and save the file.
Tip: Pre-saving your file ensures you will have access to your work in case of power interruptions. You will not start from scratch when there is power interference on your computer.
2) In the first column, enlist all big subprojects, each project on its row. Subprojects are the main phases of construction I e, excavating, laying the foundation, and electricity installation.
3) The second and third columns, respectively, state the start and estimated completion date. The fourth column will contain the budget.
4) Assign the fourth column to teams or people in charge of completing a specific task. Enlist their names to avoid duty negligence.
5) The final column indicates the project’s progress. You can write started, pending or complete to show the status of each activity.
Save the document for future use. You can print multiple copies to share with every involved party.
Types of Construction Schedules
The general types are:
The building schedule is the backbone of the whole construction schedule. Gantt chart, line of balance, critical path method, and q analysis outline the resources needed and the timeline to complete each building activity.
A labor schedule is a list of workers, the type of work accorded, and the location. The labor schedule enables supervisors and contractors to track workers’ input efficiently.
A draw schedule estimates incoming cash flow to offset construction costs. The draw schedule combined with the payment schedule creates reliable cash flow projections.
The submittal schedule provides quality control assessment mechanisms to the owner and designers. The reviewing team can check whether the materials are available and in use.
A payment schedule is the list of costs of the project. Such costs may include material, labor, and transportation expenses.
Best Practices for Construction Schedules
- Understand your project.
- Keep the schedule concise.
- Leave room for progress tracking and changes.Utilize construction scheduling software.
A construction project schedule is a chronological sequence of construction activities, start and completion dates, and the cost. Project schedules incorporate budget and cash flow to ensure project completion within the specified period.
Schedules detail method and sequence of activity execution. Also, initial scheduling can help homeowners find the best contractors to deliver within desirable timelines.
Important aspects are the start and end dates, a list of activities, parties involved, budget, and progress report.
Follow the schedule to the letter. Only make adjustments if they impede construction progress. Alternatively, hire a contractor who can effectively manage your schedule.
Ensure you delegate adequate resources. Also, after every milestone, review the construction schedule to ensure your contractor remains on toes.
Every good contractor or home developer requires a construction schedule. The easy-to-design document is the difference between project completion and ineffectual construction. Design your schedule and build your project to success using different construction schedules.