One of the major dilemmas that faces contractors on construction sites is how to verify that the estimated material resources such as steel reinforcement, cement, blocks, premix mortar, ceramic tiles, plastering, painting, false ceilings, pipes and others for actual work in place are inline to what was originally estimated. The want to be sure that the actually consumed materials that go into a building, are within the range 2.5 – 5% usually assumed by quantity surveyors and estimating engineers while preparing the bid proposal.
On capital construction projects, usually the detailed schedule developed by the contractors will be resource loaded. Those will include labor, material and equipment resources. The resource loaded schedule which must be aligned with the project’s resources estimate will be the perfect solution for monitoring, evaluating and reporting on planned material resources usage and earned material usage for approved work in place which will be calculated from the updated percent complete values for completed and in-progress activities. Nevertheless, the actual quantities of consumed or used material resources can be best captured from the daily report where the details of work in place and all types of consumed resources will be documented as well as formally communicated.
The planned, earned and actual quantities usage of material resources for each period of the project’s duration will be used to monitor, evaluate and report on how good the project’s cost estimate as well as quantifying the volume of materials consumed on the capital construction project. The analysis will use the Earned Value Management (EVM) method to quantify the material quantity variance (QV) and the Quantity Performance Index (QPI).
For each material resource type, the Estimated and Actual Material Usage report will detail the planned, earned, actual and estimate to complete for each period. This will be the basis for creating the visuals for comparing earned and actual material usage, quantity variance per period and cumulative, and the Quantity Performance Index (QPI). The report will include filters to select the material resource and the periods to be reported on. The report can be a for a single project or for a portfolio of projects although it is a must to have the material resource code values the same for all projects to be reported on.
Project Management Information System (PMIS) solutions like PMWeb will be used to capture the actual quantities of material resources as well as other labor and equipment resources actually consumed on each day of each project. The Daily Report module will be used to capture the details of all activities performed on daily basis as well as the labor, material and equipment resources consumed in performing those activities. Of course, on a capital construction project, each site engineer or site superintendent will submit the daily report for the scope of work and labor crews assigned to them.
The actual quantities of labor, material and equipment resources consumed on any particular date will be captured in the Timesheet tab of the daily report. PMWeb allows associating each captured resource consumed quantities with its relevant project schedule activity. In addition, it is highly recommended for material resources to identify if the reported quantities are for approved work in place, re-do work, damaged material, etc.
This is needed when it comes to verifying the accuracy of the estimated material quantities as additional material usage due to low workmanship, damaged completed work, etc. are not related to how accurate the cost estimate was. Of course, the additional quantities of materials actually consumed and wasted due to those actions could exceed 10% of what was originally. Nevertheless, this will be handled by actions to stop material wastage.
Similar to all other business processes managed in PMWeb, supportive documents that are usually associated or required for each daily report transaction can be attached to the daily report default template. It is highly recommended to add details to each attached document to better explain to the reader what is being attached and viewed. In addition, links to other relevant records of other business processes managed in PMWeb can be also linked to the reported progress.
It is highly recommended that all those supportive documents, regardless of their type or source, get uploaded and stored on PMWeb document management repository. PMWeb allows creating folders and subfolders to match the physical filing structure used to store hardcopies of those documents.
To ensure that the submit, review and approve dates of each daily report transaction submission are captured, a workflow will be assigned to each business process. The assigned workflow will map the submit, review and approve tasks, role or roles assigned to each task, task duration, task type and actions available for task. In addition, the workflow could be designed to include conditions to enforce the approval authority levels as defined in the Delegation of Authority (DoA) matrix.
When a daily report transaction is initiated, the workflow tab available on the relevant template will capture the planned review and approve workflow tasks for each transaction as well as the actual history of those review and approval tasks. The captured workflow data will include the actual action data and time, done by who, action taken, comments made and whether team input was requested.
The completed daily report can be printed so it can be formally communicated to the project owner or his authorized representative on the project site. The layout and format of the daily report can be designed to match the branding required set for each project. The daily report template can be also designed to consolidate the daily reports data captured by the different site engineers and site superintendents so enable formally submitting a single daily report to the project owner.
About the Author
Bassam Samman, PMP, PSP, EVP, GPM is a Senior Project Management Consultant with 40-year service record providing project management, project controls services and project management information system to over than 200 projects with a total value in excess of US $100 Billion. Those projects included Commercial, Residential, Education and Healthcare Buildings and Infrastructure, Entertainment, Hospitality and shopping malls, Oil and Gas Plants and Refineries, Telecommunication and Information Technology projects. He is thoroughly experienced in complete project management including project management control systems, computerized project control software, claims analysis/prevention, risk analysis/management (contingency planning), design, supervision, training and business development.
Bassam is a frequent speaker in topics relating to Project Management, Strategic Project Management and Project Management Personal Skills. Over the past 40 years he has lectured at more than 350 events and courses at different locations in the Middle East, North Africa, Europe and South America. He has written more than 550 articles on project management and project management information systems that were featured in international and regional magazines and newspapers. He is a co-founder of the Project Management Institute- Arabian Gulf Chapter (PMI-AGC) and has served on its board of directors for more than 6 years. He is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) from the Project Management Institute (PMI), a certified Planning and Scheduling Professional (PSP) and Earned Value Professional (EVP) from the Association for the Advancement of Cost Engineering (AACE) and Green Project Management (GPM).
Bassam holds a Masters in Engineering Administration (Construction Management) with Faculty Commendation, George Washington University, Washington, D.C., USA, Bachelor in Civil Engineering – Kuwait University, Kuwait and has attended many executive management programs at Harvard Business School, Boston, USA and London Business School, London, UK.