Practice Management: Professional Services-quality Choices

Variations and Achievements

Professional services succeed when there is coordination, documentation, and monitoring. A good quality project relies on communicating between all parties involved as well as having everything documented in writing, whether it is construction documents or meeting minutes.

Coordination is an integral part of successful professional services from a firm. It is important for the project to undergo informal and formal project reviews based on the lecture of project planning and communication and the readings. Coordination is essential for the construction phase as when disciplines are not coordinated with each other there is an increase in cost and a potential for errors in the field that could end up with a very dissatisfied client and loss in any potential profit the firm may have had to spend on fixing errors that should have been caught before construction kicked off. Regular meetings with disciplines would help greatly with decreasing conflicts, errors, issues, and problems with details or equipment. The downside to constant review for coordination is the cost and price of regularly scheduled sessions to go over the plans and specifications, as well as a need for time in the schedule for the review periods.

The biggest thing that provides success to a project and to a firm is documenting everything in writing at every opportunity that is presented in a clear and concise fashion. This includes meeting minutes, reports, construction documents, specifications, and internal communications. Through personal experience, documenting situations and communications in writing, the management team has a record and trail of information available to them in the event of a conflict or dispute between parties involved in the project. This helps with litigation problems and situations in which the client may sue. In the lectures given, documentation is an important factor to communicate to contractors on how to build a design, and it’s important to be correct in construction documents and specifications otherwise the design professional will have additional work during the construction phase to explain themselves and their design to get it built right. A project record documentation is important for when the project is finished, in the event the owner or facility manager needs to maintain the building, or wishes to change it in the future.

Monitoring is an important aspect of project management in regards to providing professional services. It is valuable to monitor the work plan, budget, assumptions, and scope to keep the project on track for a successful finish. It is integral for project managers and upper management to monitor projects all the way through continuously from the beginning to the end to ensure profitability on the firm’s part and satisfaction on the client’s part. Project goals and milestones should be regularly reviewed and modified as necessary as the project progresses and more is learned about the scope of work and scope of services. Monitoring assists with reducing scope creep that could potentially put the project over budget if unaware of the small changes that occur over time. A down side to monitoring is that there can be such a thing as too much, and micromanaging can do more harm than good in most cases.

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