How to Avoid Landscaping Project Delays
If you’ve ever wondered how to avoid landscaping project delays, the secret lies within the 80/20 rule. This stipulates that 80% of delays are caused by 20% of the planning activities that happen before the job begins.
By focusing on the 20%, you can expect an immense improvement overall when it comes to staying on schedule.
We’ll show you how to avoid the most common landscaping project delays by adjusting your overall project management mindset.
Scheduling Mistakes in Landscaping
Not knowing how long it takes to complete a task can result in needing more time to complete a project. The same can happen if you’re not sure of how many employees it takes to complete a task on time.
Then, if you didn’t schedule tasks in a logical order, you risk having to go backwards to rectify issues.
Hire a project manager! They are crucial for keeping your projects on time and your clients happy, especially as your business expands.
If you can’t afford to hire a project manager full-time, you can hire a consultant for the planning phases of larger projects.
At the very least, use a project management software. This will help you track the allotted employees, time and budget scheduled for each phase of a project.
A common mistake is underestimating the scope of a project due to missing information. If you don’t have accurate measurements of the jobsite, you risk not having enough material to complete the job.
Another common delay related to materials is waiting until the last minute to source the materials you need. What if the items you need are out of stock? Or the sizing/colors you need are no longer available. This can cause big delays in your project.
Create a foolproof estimation process for your staff that includes prompts for key information. This process should also involve visiting the jobsite to take accurate measurements for materials and equipment.
Lastly, ensure that your material sourcing process begins weeks before the project does. Ideally, you should confirm all materials for delivery or pickup 4 to 5 business days before your project begins, to avoid any unwanted surprises.
*Bonus tip: To save time and money, contact our team at GoMaterials for all of your plant material needs. We’ll source your full list of materials and handle all logistics and delivery. Plus, it’s 100% free for landscapers!
Problematic Landscaping Equipment
It’s a big problem when the rented equipment is too big or not right for the landscaping project being executed. On the other hand, not maintaining owned equipment can also lead to unexpected breakdowns while working. Maybe, worst of all, is not considering the need for equipment before materials arrive on site!
Ensure that your job supervisor or project manager is verifying equipment needs for the project. They should consider this at the beginning of the project during the estimation phase. Visiting the jobsite is crucial to understanding what equipment will be needed.
Also, don’t forget to think about equipment access. You might have the right equipment; but does the jobsite have easy access points for it?
Renting the right equipment to unload materials or perform other tasks will make things go much faster. If you own your equipment, make sure to perform maintenance on a monthly basis. While this may seem expensive, it will save you from having to reschedule a day of work due to faulty equipment.
Sick or Injured Landscaping Employees
It’s inevitable that employees will have to call in sick at one point, which can cause job delays.
Injuries on landscape projects are also inevitable, though they should be avoided with preventative measures. While these things do happen, you can avoid major delays if you’re prepared for them.
Ensure you have a list of on-call employees for every job – and that your crew leader has this list handy on the day of the job. Also, to stop injuries before they happen, make safe work practices a part of your company culture. Schedule monthly safety workshops to remind everyone how important it is to stay vigilant while working on landscaping projects.
As you can see, contractors have more control than they think when it comes to limiting project delays.