Performing regular inspections and staying current with any quality assurance issues on your CAPEX project is essential. Regardless of whether you use a third-party inspection service or you perform your own inspections, if you do not have a streamlined system for receiving updates, processing the information you receive, and making corrections to the project as needed, you run a significant risk of substantial cost overruns.
Managing Cost Overruns
The way the most successful firms manage CAPEX project cost overruns is by efficiently managing their information. The biggest causes of cost overruns and delays in CAPEX projects are miscommunication and delayed communication.
How long does it take you to get quality assurance reports? Are the reports you receive accurate? Can you instantly issue a Stop Order or a non-conformity report (NCR)?
If you are not receiving the reports quickly enough, there is no way for you to do your job properly. Serious quality issues could go unnoticed by the crews on the job site. Likewise, if you are not able to instantly issue orders to correct any issues, valuable time and money will be wasted. These problems are compounded if you are not getting the proper information in your reports in the first place. You cannot correct problems that you don’t know about.
If you want to properly manage cost overruns you need to:
- Improve the speed of your communication
- Ensure that you have the right information
How to Improve the Speed of Your Communication
In today’s technological environment there is no reason you should have to wait any significant period of time for a field report. You should be using a tool that allows you to access the report as soon as it is completed. You shouldn’t even have to wait for an email.
The speed of communication is essential if you want to avoid scheduling issues or compounded quality issues because work was not halted soon enough.
Another way to increase the speed of your communication is to increase the frequency of your inspections. The more offer quality assurance inspections are performed the faster any mistakes or problems can be flagged and corrected.
You can avoid gaps in communication by combining frequent inspections with the ability to immediately review reports and the ability to instantly send out a Stop Order or a NCR.
Making Sure You Have the Right Information
Fast communications is only part of the solution to CAPEX project cost overruns. You also need to make sure that you have access to the right information. You can only make decisions as good as the information you are getting in the inspection reports.
Optimally, you would have access to an inspection tool that made sure the inspectors knew what they should be looking for, that would allow them to document any issues from the tool, and would allow inspectors to complete and send their reports from the tool itself.
This would ensure that you always had the latest and most accurate information to aid you in your decision making process.
However, this information also needs to be achievable. You may need to draw reports on different issues or flagged items at a later date. Even after a quality issue is resolved, the reports may be needed for insurance purposes or for compliance with health and safety protocols after an accident.
If you want to reduce your costs and keep your CAPEX projects running on time and on budget, you need to be using a tool that speeds up communications, ensures you have the best information available, and that allows you to archive reports for later use.
If you would like to see an example of this type of tool, click here to see the user interface for TrentNspect.