By Brian DuBose, Varo Engineers
Successful project Delivery doesn’t just happen when delivering a completed project; it’s a process that begins at conception and continues through execution and completion. It requires careful forethought and planning to be done effectively, which is why it’s important to have defined processes in place from the very beginning. Without a process for getting it done, things can easily go off track and completely derail the project’s scope, schedule, and budget. We’ve learned to prevent this from happening by applying and following the Varo Way – our process for successful project delivery.
The Varo Way consists of eight steps that begin at project initiation and end at construction completion. These steps serve as a guide for how we work with our clients and partners at each phase of a project.
Step 1. Listen
Before initiating a project, the project owner needs to communicate what they want to accomplish; this often comes in the form of the functional scope of work. It gives everyone a chance to understand the end goal.
Step 2. Collaborate
Once the functional scope is established and distributed, there needs to be an open discussion between all parties involved. For Varo, this means working with not only the owner and all of our in-house disciplines involved, but with any other firms or contractors as well. In doing this, intersection points of the design, or anywhere one design would affect another, can be identified and addressed to help determine the best path forward and prevent any issues during the design phase.
Step 3. Understand
Now that everyone has a clear understanding of the goal and how everyone is working towards it, a site visit should be conducted to ensure everyone’s on the same page. It allows the consultants and contractors to see what they’re working with and help the owner understand what’s possible and what the best solution is to achieve their goal.
Step 4. Define
After conducting the site visit and compiling all the information collected from it, the project can be well-defined through a detailed scope of work that includes the budget and schedule.
Step 5. Execute
Once the green light is given by the owner, the design phase can begin using the detailed scope. During execution, it’s critical to have different stopping points for design reviews with the owner. By involving the owner throughout the process, there won’t be any surprises at the end when the final designs are being delivered.
Step 6. Deliver
When all the designs are complete, they can be turned over to the owner to issue for construction. At this point, there should be no surprises or changes that need to be made.
Step 7. Learn
Once the project complete, it’s important to gather feedback from various parties involved in the project, from the firms involved to the construction crew and owner themselves. The key to collecting valuable information is to request honest, constructive feedback on not only what went well but also what didn’t go as well.
Step 8. Leverage
When it’s all said and done, the feedback received should be presented to and discussed amongst the project team, and applied as lessons learned for next time.
While these steps may seem like common sense, it can be easy to gloss over one (or a few) if they aren’t part of a well-defined process. Whether you’re an owner or a contractor, using these steps as a guide will help improve the delivery of any project.
Read 8 Steps for Successful Project Delivery on Columbus Chamber of Commerce.
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