How to Mitigate Claims During the Construction Phase Part 1
Construction claims and disputes are considered to be a daily characteristic of the construction industry. They affect job sites, projects, schedules, and both workers and employers alike. The more complex the project, the more likely contractors and owners will encounter claims. In this article and part two, our Miami construction attorneys will discuss activities such as teamwork, communication, and delegating authority which are essential for mitigating claims during the construction phase of a project.
A Teamwork Approach
When construction parties come together in the spirit of teamwork, they are in essence partnering with the intention to set goals, resolve disputes, and improve project outcomes. Partnering is a voluntary process whereby everyone recognizes that it takes a team to complete a project on time and on budget. This is not a substitute for good project management practices nor does it change contract obligations. Effective partnering will help to minimize changes, claims, and disputes.
Communicate Openly and Often
It is critical that communication is maintained from the start of a project through completion. Early communication helps to identify potential issues which allows parties to promptly resolve them before they become a full-blown claim. Effective communication consists of:
- Establishing clear lines of communication
- Choosing the best method of communication
- Active listening
- Clear and concise messaging
- Providing facts
- Effective Delegation
Reserving authority for upper management only can lead to project stagnation because the entire system is limited by a small number of decision makers. In complex projects, you’ll have the project manager, assistant site managers, engineers, safety advisors, supervisors, and quality managers. Delegating certain levels of authority to these individuals speeds up processes especially when time is of the essence. Furthermore, proper delegation helps to reduce project delays.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this article is for general educational information only. This information does not constitute legal advice, is not intended to constitute legal advice, nor should it be relied upon as legal advice for your specific factual pattern or situation.