Work on site is usually slow (P1)
A contractor’s capability to execute the work needed is a determining factor in completing any project on time. As a client, there are measures you can take to make sure your vision is understood, and the contractor is on the same page. In our local market, it is common for contractors to take on too many projects. This spreads their resources thin and does not allow them to allocate enough for each project. It is therefore important to remember it is not the Managing Director (MD) or General Manager (GM) of the contracting company that gives you the right finish. It is the skilled and unskilled labour on site. The client or the independent Project Manager (PM) needs to ensure that the contractor selected provides the required labour skill-sets and organizes the necessary equipment as and when needed. And keep in mind the three pillars of Project Management – Quality, Cost and Time
Working off site improves precision (P2)
In other countries it is common that specialized finishes are done off site in a workshop, where adequate tools, and facilities are available. However locally we don’t have such workshops. Therefore a lot of work ends up being done on site which results in many avoidable errors and delays. Furthermore, the quality of the finishings suffer as they are not up to standards achievable in a factory setting. Many contractors subcontract their labour and as a result end up matching inadequate skills with high expectations from clients. Which is a common reason for many projects to fall behind schedule.
Currently in Sri Lanka there is a shortage of Blue-collar workers qualified in Civil, Mechanical, Electrical and Plumbing work. For contractors, it is essential they train their labour adequately on site, and find ways to retain them. This will lead to the development of the contractors themselves and the market as a whole.