Pre-construction services, as the name suggests, are used before any actual construction begins. These services are part of the pre-construction planning stages of a construction project and are very important to make sure any job goes smoothly.
A more modern construction practice and part of the broader construction project management, pre-construction is the first phase of the overall planning, coordination, and control of a construction job. Pre-construction aims to nail down the planning of the project and give the client a clear picture for what their job is going to look like, how it is going to get done, and when every aspect of the job will be completed.
And remember, this all happens, before a single piece of construction is conducted. So what exactly are these pre-construction services that help make a project run so smoothly? Let’s take a look.
During the pre-construction process we will work directly with you and your architect to create cost estimates to help with the your decision making. These early estimates are supported by schematic designs and previous jobs of similar scope. From here, the job would move to a design development stage and finally the construction document state. It is at the final stage that we will be able to host a job walk with our suppliers and trade partners and create a Contract Estimate to review with you the owner. The Pre-Construction steps are as follows:
Project Development Schedule
1) INITIAL MEETING & REGULAR FOLLOW-UPS
The contractor will first have an initial meeting with the client to go over the client’s objectives. In this initial meeting, the contractor will learn the client’s goals for the project as well as their budget. The contractor and client will meet several more times during the pre-construction process to stay up-to-date on progress and allow for any changes to be made.
2) AN OVERALL EVALUATION OF THE PROJECT
The pre-construction process starts in broad terms with an overall project evaluation. This will emerge from the initial meeting between client and contractor and is the big picture elements of the project. This initial evaluation lays the foundation for the rest of the pre-construction services as well as the actual construction.
It is here that needs and expectations for the project will be clearly defined and understood by all those set to participate in the job.
3) INITIAL BUDGET ESTIMATES
There are several components that go into estimating the budget for a construction project. These may include the cost of materials, subcontractors, suppliers, equipment, and more. It is likely that multiple estimates will be provided as the contractor works through various options with the client, and any budget estimate should always be rated against the project budget.
The contractor will also need to identify the cost of potential issues, as well as evaluate any opportunities for potential savings. Finding cost saving alternatives can be a major benefit of the pre-construction process.
4) SELECTING MATERIALS & EQUIPMENT
Another pre-construction service is the choice of the materials and equipment that will be used in the job. This starts first with the building systems that will be used and the equipment required to use that system.
Sustainable building has become very important in recent years, and we know clients are looking for opportunities to make their building more “green.”
5) SITE ANALYSIS
Here the contractor will visit the construction site and will look into the site’s feasibility. This means they will be checking to see if the site is a good fit for the requirements of the project. They will attempt to predict any future issues and costs that may be encountered.
The contractor will even look into the existing infrastructure, capacity, and the proposed routing and location. All of this goes into whether or not the site will be suitable, or feasible, for the intended project.
6)THOROUGH REVIEW OF DESIGN DOCUMENTS
We will pore over this set of documents to make sure that it reflects what the client is asking for. Every detail and possible oversight must be considered.
Materials must be evaluated, the systems and product delivery in place can be reconsidered, areas of concern will be targeted, and more. The project won’t move forward until there is a consensus among the entire team that they have considered absolutely everything and gathered the opinions of everyone involved.
7) SET A PRELIMINARY SCHEDULE
A vital part of pre-construction information is creating an initial schedule. This preliminary schedule will identify key milestones and schedule everything in the entire project, from start to finish. This will help organize the project and set a clear outline for how it will make it to its conclusion.
All design and construction activities will be clearly defined with start times and approval milestones. The project sequencing plan will be formed, and the subcontractor and client input will be given to finding a final schedule that works from everyone. This will be the baseline schedule from which the entire project will be run.
8) ESTABLISHING A FINAL BUDGET
The client will likely come to a pre-construction meeting with a budget already in mind, but it will take some thought to reach the actual project budget. Much of how the budget is created will depend upon cost control measures taken by the contractor.
9) PROCUREMENT MANAGEMENT
Long lead items will also be considered at this phase. It can be easy to overlook lead times when procuring certain materials which may cause senseless delays during a project.
Long lead items are those that are necessary to meet the project schedule, but which take a long time to deliver. By planning ahead for the lead time, there won’t be any delays caused by waiting for any items during the construction.
10) BID PACKAGING
Now comes the time to bid on all of the work that is needed for the project. There will typically be a few qualified bidders for each trade and a detailed analysis will be given to developing a comparison baseline. The entire scope of work will be evaluated and a final schedule will be created once a bid is secured.
11) SAFETY CONSIDERATIONS
Last but not least, pre-construction services should always include a focus on safety. Beyond adhering to local, state, and federal regulations, every person on site must be kept safe as well. Every worker and situation must be evaluated to make sure that all workers are safe at all times.
Pre-construction services give contractors and owners the opportunity to evaluate the entire project and create a plan that will take it all the way through its conclusion: the post-construction phase. This is a major cost-saving opportunity that will allow a construction project to flow more smoothly. Much of the job will heavily rely on the decisions made during this initial planning stage. For more information, please contact us to schedule a meeting today!