Construction Administration and Observation: Why They Are Crucial For Successful Projects
If you’ve heard of construction administration and observation, you’ve probably wondered what these services really have to offer. Will having someone coordinate the administration and construction of your project really have an impact on its success? Often overlooked during the construction process, construction administration and observation do, in fact, play an important role in the engineering and construction processes.
Just think, wouldn’t having someone on the job site who communicates with the contractor, observes the quality of the work, and keeps track of important documentation make projects run a lot more smoothly? To answer that question, let’s take a closer look at everything these services can offer. In this blog post, we’ll review what construction administration and observation entail and discuss why these services are a crucial investment for successful project completion.
What Is Construction Administration and Observation?
In engineering and construction, the terms construction administration services and construction observation services are often used interchangeably. Often, engineering firms will provide this service to their clients. The engineer of record for the project will monitor all construction activities to ensure they are in line with the approved plans to help facilitate successful project completion.
In the event these are offered as two separate services, administration may be offered as a basic service, while observation is usually considered an add-on. Why? Construction observation requires a lot more than processing and keeping track of documentation for administrative purposes. It entails services like:
- On-site observations
- Contractor verification
- Drawing and specification compliance checks
- Specialty compliance testing
- Inspection and progress reporting
- Specialty materials reporting
- Punch-list preparation
The Importance of Construction Administration and Observation
When added to projects, both administration and observation can have a significant impact on the final outcome. Here are some of the valuable benefits you can expect when you add these services to your next project:
Project Quality Assurance
In the construction process, quality assurance includes everything from observing construction activities to monitoring progress and even informing contractors when work is not meeting the specifications outlined in the project’s plans. The latter is a critical function of the observer because while quality control ultimately falls on the contractor’s shoulders, quality assurance is the responsibility of the observer. And without an observer on the job site, project quality assurance can suffer.
However, when there is a dedicated person on the jobsite to observe the construction process and progress, project owners can feel more confident that their goals and objectives will be met, as it’s the observer’s job to help them do just that. On top of instilling confidence in project owners, construction observers also assure that projects meet the architect’s or engineer’s standards. And, if opportunities arise, project observers can even step in and use their expertise to help improve the original plan.
Construction inspectors are present during all construction activities, so if a question or concern arises, they’re available and can speak to contractors, project owners, municipal officials, and even residents when needed. Effective communication between all team members on the jobsite helps keep projects moving in a timely manner and can ensure that few (or no) hiccups arise along the way. Project owners and engineers aren’t always going to be able to check-in or visit the job site, so having someone available to observe activities and report back can make sure that lines of communication always remain open.
Construction administrators track all of the project’s progress. This includes things like reviewing contractor documents, analyzing plans before construction begins, and maintaining all project files and documentation. Administrators also keep records of which parts of the job have been completed, which parts are a work-in-progress, and which materials arrive to and leave the job site.
With so many moving parts and different team members on the job site, having an administrative professional available to keep track of all records can help guarantee that all activities, documents and any issues that arise are effectively captured.
Construction Administration and Observation and Your Next Project
At Carroll Engineering, we know the value construction administration and observation can bring to your projects. And after reading, we hope you understand how construction administration and observation services can help you and your team complete projects more successfully. These services help facilitate improved quality assurance, effective communication, and accurate record-keeping—all of which contribute to compliant, safe and successful project completion.
To learn more about our construction administration and observation services and to view featured projects, visit our Construction Administration & Observation service page.
Ready to get started on your next project? Contact us!