02 Mar Are you at risk of losing your construction contracts for this reason?
Are your employees aware of you Corporate policies and quality standards?
Are you risking your contracts?
Most organisations have a set of quality procedures, processes and forms. They issue these as standard documents at the tender stage, or the start of the project. These showcase how the quality will be managed on the sites and within the company.
When managing the quality requirements on site, the project team do not always seem to be aware of the company quality procedures and client requirements. A disconnect between the Head office, and the site team, who will be administering the actual system is usually the cause.
On most sites the Supervision consultant or client, will request evidence from the site engineer for quality inspections and supporting documents to validate the work. This request can often cause a blank expression on the face of the site engineer. Who often do not have the necessary documents and controls available.
Site engineer will re-actively try to compile and issue the necessary documents. This leads to a very frustrated client and, or, Supervision Consultant.
Why does this happen?
This frustration is primarily caused by a lack of employee training and awareness of the quality systems or the tools to use for effective application. This can result in staff using their own procedures or “perceived processes”. They bring these from previous employers and information received from their peers. This can be “bad practice” masquerading as “best practice”.
A project management company learnt the hard way and faced this situation recently.
Our client had signed a contract with a Project Management company to provide Supervision services for their new project. The signed contract stated a number of activities and project controls that the PM will use to oversea the contractors work. This included specific quality tools.
PM was asked by the client how they intend to manage the quality of the work at site and to issue their documents.
The PM company management replied. “ This is not our work and it will come from the Main Contractor who will manage their own inspections and quality”.
As a result of this seemingly innocent reply (along with a number of other inefficiencies and inconsistencies) the client decided to terminate the contract.
The client concluded that if this is the belief of the management. The likelihood is that the project team would have a similar same mindset towards quality, and may not deliver the required quality standards. Our client decided “No thank you”.
How to minimize the risk
To minimize the risk on your projects. It is essential that you take a proactive approach towards quality.
Educate your employees and provide the practical tools and information, through training and workshops.
Create a quality culture. This will enable effective administration and application of the quality system and quality standards for your company. Your employees are a representation and reflection of your company. What quality messages are you sending to your clients?
The process has to start from Senior Management. Promote and embed a quality culture into the organisation in every department and business function.
Quality is not simply focusing on the end product and result. It needs to be part of every process in the construction cycle. A holistic approach is necessary.
Make sure every employee is aware of your system and the requirements. They have an important part to play in the overall outcome of delivery of your products and projects. Their actions directly affect the work of others. This interaction needs to be understood.
6 ways to communicate your message
If there is limited time available, which is often the case. Here are 6 simple ways your organization can effectively and efficiently communicate this information to your teams:-
2.Short Quality workshops and Tool box talks
3.Practical hands-on training on the sites
4. Quality Management Review meetings
5. Lessons Learnt
6. Quality notices and bulletins
Are you at risk from losing your contracts because your personnel are not aware of your company quality requirements?.