You Can Never Start Closing Out a Project Too Early
January 31, 2018
So, your team just got awarded a brand new project and you’re raring to get started: what’s the first thing you do? I’m guessing that your answer wasn’t “Start my closeout log,” but maybe it should be. Understanding what the closeout requirements are prior to the end of a project can truly reduce the heartache that is usually associated with closing out.
Setting Closeout Requirements for the Team
If your project is like most, you will likely have several volumes of a project manual devoted to closing out. Within both these volumes and the contract should lie all of the information for closeout requirements. Some of these requirements, such as information submittals, inspection results, and reports, will need to be collected long before turnover to ensure that no rework is required. As a result, the sooner you begin the closeout process, the sooner you can resolve issues.
Issues can even be solved well before the build phase, too. Specifications are often re-used from project to project and owner to owner, meaning that some of the items called for may not actually be necessary. Once you have an understanding of what the documents call for, you can initiate a conversation with the owner, design team and other stakeholders about your concerns and ideas. Having done your due diligence in going through the specs as-written, you can present a better argument for you suggestions and alterations, saving you money and increasing your reputation among designers and owners as a GC who knows their stuff.
Shortening the Closeout Process
Agreeing upon requirements early in the project lifecycle gives your team plenty of time to collect the necessary documents and information to ensure a smooth closeout process. Subcontractors and vendors can be notified of their specific requirements and given early delivery dates, padding your schedule further down the line. All of this planning can lead to an overall reduction in the time it requires to collect documents and fulfill closeout requirements, meaning the time after the build phase can be used focusing on creating a polished turnover package. This also allows for staff to move onto new projects faster and reduce the overall cost of closeout.
Release Retainers Faster
Your profit- a few million more reasons to start closing out early. As most project managers have experienced, collecting final payment can be an arduous task. This is usually due to some lingering documentation that the owner needs before releasing your retainer. If you prepared for closeout during the rest of your project, you’ll have gathered all the information you need to identify, locate, and turn in the document. This not only leads to your final payment, but also leaves a client with the best possible impression of you and your firm, which in tun can lead to future projects.
Having kicked the can so far down the road for so long, many GCs believe closing out early to be a daunting task, but there are solutions. Pype Closeout can automatically notify trade partners of closeout requirements, collect documentation, and provide your team with an easy-to-understand platform to review your closeout progress and compile a hyperlinked, digital turnover package. Starting your closeout process early makes it easier in the long term- Pype Closeout makes it easier in the short term, too.