How Can Technology Support Your Construction Project Quality Management Plan Implementation?

Regardless of your project type or size, projects need to be completed on time, within the approved budget while meeting the required quality standards. Similar to the other project management plans, the Project Quality Management Plan (PQMP) documents the necessary information required to effectively manage project quality during the construction stage. It defines the project’s quality policies, procedures, criteria for and areas of application, and roles, responsibilities and authorities.

The successful implementation of the PQMP will enable the project delivery team to achieve the following objectives: Minimize construction defects from occurring, Ensure work conforms to contract documents and functional performance requirements, Select quality-oriented subcontractors and suppliers of all tiers, Ensure that workmanship required by contract documents is performed by qualified craftsmen from every trade, Perform contractually required inspections and tests in a timely manner, Perform relevant inspections/observations as defined by the approved construction inspection checklists, Minimize rework during the course of construction, Strive for a zero-item completion list at substantial completion and Minimize final punch list.

How Can Technology Support Your Construction Project Quality Management Plan Implementation?

Project Management Information Systems (PMIS) like PMWeb are specifically designed to manage the complete project life cycle of capital projects. This will cover managing the project schedule, budget, procurement, commitments, communications, risks, HSE, stakeholders, quality among other project management processes. PMWeb provides an integrated web-enabled platform to automate the processes of quality assurance and quality control as stated in the PQMP as well as provide real-time single version of truth monitoring and evaluation of the project’s QA/QC performance.

QA/QC Organization Chart

The project’s QA/QC organization chart created in PMWeb organization chart module will be used to reflect the requirements presented in the project’s execution plan (PEP). The organization of the project staff, including QA/QC staff, Construction Quality Manager (CQM) will provide QC oversight and guidance throughout the duration of the project.

The needed resources as per the QA/QC organization chart will be booked to ensure their availability as per the project’s quality management requirements. PMWeb resources requirement module will be used to identify and book the required resources for the needed duration and level of effort. The booking of resources can be detailed and mapped to the QA/QC activities identified in the project schedule.

This will help the organization to assess the efficiency of the QA/QC resources by comparing the actual hours recorded using PMWeb timesheet module and the planned hours as per the resource requirements template. The timesheet module allows capturing the details of actual hours whether they were spent as regular, overtime or weekend pay. PMWeb timesheet module allows capturing the hours for the complete QA/QC team in a single timesheet if needed. Of course, the timesheet also allows capturing the details of non-labor resources in addition to the labor resource.

QA/QC Roles and Responsibilities

The Project Quality Management Plan should include clear job description detailing roles, responsibilities, authorities and performance criteria assigned to each QA/QC resource. PMWeb custom form builder will be used to capture the job description details for each QA/QC resource position. For example, the Construction Quality Manager (CQM) will be responsible for Overall implementation of the PQMP, Review and approval of daily reports, Ensure proper scheduling of preparatory and initial phase inspections, Attending preparatory and initial phase inspections, Prevent, stop, or correct QC deficiencies, defective work, or noncompliance, Exercise “stop work” authority when required to prevent performance inconsistent with contract documents, Investigate research, define, and isolate quality problems and participate in their resolution, Initiate and maintain QC records, review procedures, and monitor documentation for completeness, accuracy, and compliance with contract requirements, Monitor and update the submittal register and review submittals, Ensure that as‐built drawings are being accurately maintained and Staffing, approval, and assignment of additional discipline specific inspectors as needed to ensure effective implementation of this PQMP.

In addition, the job description forms could include a scoring field for each identified task to appraise the resource performance in achieving their assigned tasks. This data can be then used to report the performance of the QA/QC team and to identify actions and measures that need to be taken to ensure the proper performance of the assigned team.

Project Directory

The PQMP should have detailed list of all organizations and individuals who have a role in the project to achieve the project’s quality assurance and quality control requirements. The list should include the contact details for each individual which are captured in PMWeb companies’ directory.

PMWeb pre-qualification module will be used to enforce a formal process for selecting quality-oriented subcontractors and suppliers who might be involved in the project delivery. The pre-qualification template can be designed to capture the needed information for each entity that might be involved in the delivering the project’s scope of work. In addition, it includes a scoring matrix that can be defined by the QA/QC team to ensure that subcontractors and suppliers are objectively assessed against the same measures that matter most to the organization as well as the project.

Quality Control Meetings

Weekly Quality Control (QC) meetings are a must on every construction project. As a minimum, the following shall be accomplished at each QC meeting:

  • Rework items (Identified since the last meeting and Completed since the last meeting)
  • Submittal status (Submittals reviewed since the last meeting and Submittals expected within the next 2‐week window)
  • Identify any testing required in support of or confirming remedial activities
  • Review status of any offsite activities
  • Identify any special documentation requirements for either production or QC
  • Address and resolve any production or QC problems
  • Identify any production or QC procedures that may be less effective than anticipated and may require revising the project delivery or contingency plan and annotate any recommendations
  • Identify any activities or items that may require revising the PQMP and annotate any recommendations

Daily Reports

Daily Report is one of the many formal communications that a Contractor is obliged to submit on daily basis. The daily report is used to record details of the completed works and resources, labor and non-labor, employed on the construction site. The daily report will detail the weather status among others. In addition, the daily report will also report on quality control activities including field calibrations. PMWeb Daily Report module will be used to capture those details along with the progress photographs of progressed works or important incidents.

Submittal Review and Approval

Submittals are the contract documents that require the contractor to prepare, review, approve and submit to the Consultant for review, approval, or other appropriate action. They demonstrate the contractor’s understanding of the contract documents and how the contractor intends to execute the project requirements by Identifying products selected from acceptable products in specifications, Detailing how items constructed and interface with adjacent construction, Identifying optional characteristics, Scheduling types of products by location, Describing physical and performance criteria and Certifying that products meet or exceed specified requirements.

PMWeb submittal module allows capturing the details of all needed submittals including the relevant specification section, title, supplier, subcontractor WBS level, project schedule activity ID, lead time to procure among others. In addition, PMWeb allows creating unlimited number of attributes with list of values that can be used to better describe the submittal and use to report and analyze the performance of the submittal process.

Request for Inspection

During construction of works in a Project, the Contractor needs to constantly inform the Engineer about his work plan. This Information is passed in the form of ‘Request for Inspection’ (RFI). Usually, the project specifications detail the inspection tests needed for each section. Therefore, it is highly recommended to have a detailed inspection checklist defined for each specification section. This will help in building consensus among all parties involved in the inspection process whether this was at a single project level or across all projects managed by the organization. PMWeb custom form builder will be used to create the RFI for all specification sections.

Non-Conformance Reports (NCR)

Non-Conformance Reports (NCR) is a construction related document that keeps track of deviation and work that fails to meet standards and specifications. The following are the most common situations that will require the issuance of an NCR: Work that was not built as indicated in the approved Issued for Construction Drawings, Work that fails to meet specified tolerances as established in the project specifications, Work that is being performed using non-approved methods or standards, When the testing and inspection plan is not followed as agreed, When testing results demonstrate that the product does not meet established and approved standards, When a material is used and has not been approved as a substitute (equal or similar), When design is not accurate and does not represent actual field conditions and When the approved procedure was not followed, and quality defects have been identified by the project team. (https://www.thebalance.com/non-conformance-report-how-to-report-a-quality-issue-844987). PMWeb custom form builder will be used to design the NCR in the desired form and format to capture the needed information.

Punch List Inspection

Near completion of all work or any increment thereof, the CQM will conduct an inspection of the work and develop a “punch list” of items that do not conform to the approved figures and specifications. This “punch list” will include the estimated date by which the deficiencies will be corrected. In addition, the CQM can assess the amount of funds to be withheld from the Contractor’s progress invoice until those deficiencies are corrected and accepted. The CQM will make a second inspection to ascertain all deficiencies have been corrected.

Documents Filing

Documents generated by the QA/QC processes must be maintained in an orderly fashion. PMWeb document management repository will be used to store all documents that were attached to the different QA/QC processes. These should be arranged by category to include Photographs and videos, Specifications, Contract, Shop-Drawings and As-Built Drawings, Test Results and Certificates, Warranties and Guarantees, Operations and Maintenance Manuals, among others. All of those documents will be available to be linked to one or many PMWeb QA/QC records and other PMWeb records like change orders, Request for Information, Transmittal among many others.

Automating QA/QC Processes

The Project Quality Management Plan (PQMP) should include a responsibility assignment matrix (RAM) the details the role for each project entity and team member in implementing the processes included in the PQMP. The RAM defines the project management processes and identifies the team member responsible for their performance, review, comments and who to be informed. The RAM helps to clearly define the responsibilities of the project Team Members, lines of authority and flow of approvals and information among the Team Members.

The RAM or RACI defines the Responsible individual to do the work to achieve the task, Accountable (also Approver) is the one ultimately answerable for the correct and thorough completion of the deliverable or task. In other words, an accountable must sign off (approve) work that Responsible provides. There must be only one accountable specified for each task or deliverable. The Consulted are those team members whose opinions are sought while Informed are those who are kept up-to-date on progress, often only on completion of the task or deliverable.

Using PMWeb workflow module, RACI values for each process will be translated into a workflow that details the steps for the project team member responsible for initiating the process, the project team member accountable for reviewing and approving the process, the project team members who might need to be consulted by the team member accountable for reviewing and approving the process, and the project team members who need to be informed on the process status and details.

QA/QC Management Performance Reporting

The data captured in the different QA/QC processes will become the trust-worthy source of information to provide real-time single version of the truth on project’s performance from the quality perspective. Tabular logs for the different processes including submittals, request for inspections, non-conformance reports, punch lists among others can be produced in the desired form and format.

In addition, graphical reports and dashboards can be produced to provide the insight to make better and faster informed QA/QC related decisions. The project quality status report displayed below provides the QA/QC team as well as other project team members with real-time monitoring and evaluation of Non-Conformance Reports, Request for Inspections and Punch Lists that could be assigned to different project’s milestones.

Conclusion

Regardless of your project type or size, projects need to be completed on time, within the approved budget while meeting the required quality standards. Similar to the other project management plans, the Project Quality Management Plan (PQMP) documents the necessary information required to effectively manage project quality during the construction stage. PMWeb PMIS provides a single web-enabled platform to automate the PQMP processes to capture real-time trust worthy data to provide the insight to make better and faster informed QA/QC related decisions.