Scheduling a workforce can be a challenge for any manager. Scheduling construction crews can be even more problematic.
With the vast number of factors facing a general contractor or foreman, scheduling is often one of the most difficult tasks facing them.
Dealing with delays and scheduling setbacks are a common experience for construction professionals. Not only are they frustrating and costly, they tend to complicate the process of scheduling construction crews.
Top Reasons for Scheduling Delays
The International Journal of Project Management (IJPM) published an article reporting on a survey identifying the most prevalent causes of delays in construction projects with traditional type contracts. An abstract from that article noted,
"Results of the survey indicate that contractors and consultants agreed that owner interference, inadequate contractor experience, financing and payments, labor productivity, slow decision making, improper planning, and subcontractors are among the top ten most important factors."
Along with these can be weather, accidents and labor issues with construction crews.
While many of the causes may be out of the control of the contractor, some of the top reasons can be addressed, such contractor experience, slow decision making and improper planning.
Addressing Construction Workforce Scheduling Issues
According to an article by one construction software firm, a lack of accountability in construction scheduling is one of the most common issues impacting contractors. This is largely due to the practice of project scheduling based on when each element of construction project should be complete.
The weak link in this approach is the concept of "should." Although each element and function should occur and be completed at certain times and intervals, this cannot be guaranteed. One problem lies in how these missed "should" dates are dealt with. Unfortunately, too often the original schedule isn't adjusted and updated with all the details as the project proceeds.
The other problem is the typical approach to planning the schedule. The person or team responsible for making the schedule do not include those overseeing the actual work in creating the schedule. And this can result in a schedule that is too aggressive or unrealistic from the start.
According to the authors of the article mentioned above, effective production planning is the key to scheduling accountability.
"Production planning is the process in which all contractors, subcontractors, and others involved in construction collaborate to create a realistic schedule. Including them in the original scheduling process will help devise a more realistic schedule from the start, and give the people actually doing the work more of a sense of ownership in the project.
To further maintain accountability, production planning needs to incorporate the SHOULD CAN WILL DID process. This process clearly states what needs to happen on the project, what tasks are expected from each team member, aligns their tasks with their skillset, and provides an avenue for them to make their updates as they complete their work."
Remembering Certified Payroll Requirements
Another key aspect to scheduling and planning for your firm's construction crews is your construction payroll and prevailing wage reporting. While not every construction project requires a certified payroll, almost any government contract will involve this process and the need for prevailing wage reporting.
In brief, a certified payroll is a construction firm's accounting of all items paid out for work performed on a government client contract. Certified payroll involves maintaining and submitting a detailed report that records all the hours worked by employees, the wages each employee was paid, and the specific jobs the employees performed.
A certified payroll is formatted with a special payroll report that consists of these two pages:
- A Certified Payroll Report: This report contains information on who worked on the job, how much they were paid, the type of work performed, etc.
- A Statement of Compliance: This document requires the original signature of a company official and is signed under penalty of perjury.
The primary purpose of the certified payroll process is providing the contracted government agency with documented oversight. This, in turn, assures that government contractors have paid their employees in accordance with requirements of "prevailing wages,." which are typically the average wages paid for a given job in a particular local area such as a state or county.
The legal basis for the prevailing wage requirement was established with the passing of the Davis-Bacon Act in 1931.
Certified Payroll Process Made Easier
As a contractor, you know that accurate and timely management and compliance are crucial in the construction industry and for their HR professionals. This is especially true for certified payroll and managing this can be challenging.
Fortunately, there are options.
Accuchex is a reputable workforce management services provider and can not only assist you with the burden of your ongoing compliance demands, but can potentially prove to be a more cost-effective solution, as well.
Click the button below to learn what how we can help you certified payroll management best practices. For more immediate information, feel free to call Accuchex Payroll Management Services at 877-422-2824.