The construction closeout is verified by means of specific documents. Find out how to manage them effectively and safely
The construction closeout is a crucial phase in any construction project, which requires not only a high level of technical expertise, but also the production of a series of specific documents. These documents serve to certify the completion of the work and the compliance of the built structure with current regulations and project requirements.
In this article, we will provide you with a list of documents to be drawn up at the end of a construction project and share some valuable advice on how to manage them effectively.
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What is meant by construction project closeout and site closure?
The end of a construction project, also known as construction closeout, represents the final phase in the evolution of a construction site. It is a fundamental stage as it includes a series of activities that must be carried out before the project can be considered finished.
These activities include:
- cleaning the site of debris, unused materials, and no longer necessary equipment;
- conducting final tests and inspections to verify that the work has been carried out in compliance with the plans, regulatory requirements, and project specifications;
- resolving any residual issues identified during the inspections, which can be effectively addressed by preparing a snag list, which is a checklist indicating the defects, issues, and incomplete work of the project and how to manage them;
- closing any remaining contracts, including settling payments with various contractors and suppliers, and evaluating the costs incurred compared to the budget;
- handing over the work to the client and archiving all project-related documentation (including permits, plans, certificates, progress reports, etc.), which must be carefully preserved for future reference or potential claims.
List of required construction closeout documents for project closure
In addition to the operations just described, the closure of construction projects also involves the preparation of a series of technical and administrative documents that certify the completion of all activities and ensure the compliance of the project with the predetermined specifications.
These documents may vary depending on local legislation and the type of project. However, it is possible to draw up a list of documents to be produced and properly managed in the final phase of the construction process:
- as-built drawings: these are drawings prepared by the designer reflecting the final state of the project, including any changes made during construction;
- reports on final inspections: these are reports that include details of the checks carried out at the end of the work. They serve to verify the functionality and correct execution of the structural, mechanical, electrical, hydraulic, fire, safety, etc. components;
- punch list: also known as a snag list, it is a document listing all the issues that need to be resolved or completed before the construction can be considered finished (such as finishing work, defect correction, final cleaning, etc.);
- final change orders: documents that track the changes made to the project during construction. They are very common in the closing phase because, generally, each item on the punch list is transformed into a change order;
- certificate of work completion: the work completion report is issued by project manager in the context of public contracts to certify the closure of the execution period and verify that the work has been carried out in accordance with the contractual terms;
- structural testing certificate: this is a document drawn up by an authorized technician and issued at the end of the operations necessary for the structural testing of the building;
- technical-administrative testing certificate: the technical-administrative tester certifies, within six months of the completion of the work, that the object of the contract has been realized in accordance with the contractual provisions and in compliance with the predetermined technical, economic, and qualitative characteristics;
- certificate of proper execution: in some specific cases (depending on the contractual amount and the type of work carried out), the testing certificate can be replaced by the certificate of proper execution. This document is issued by project managers within three months from the date of completion of works. The issuance is based on a thorough inspection and verification that the execution complies with the contract between the contracting authority and the contracting company, in terms of form, dimensions, quality, quantity, material supplies, and compliance;
- final account of works: this document provides a detailed description of the work carried out, the contractor’s compensation, and any credits, and is drawn up by the project manager after project completion. The final account of works is always accompanied by a report on the final account, documenting all the events related to the execution of works, and to which additional documents are attached (including handover reports, variant surveys, additional acts, suspension and resumption reports, accounting acts, etc.);
- quality certificates: these are documents certifying that the materials used during construction meet the technical specifications and applicable regulations;
- plant conformity declarations: these are certifications that installing companies provide to the client at the end of works, after carrying out the checks required by current regulations. They are intended to assess the correct functioning of the systems installed inside the building;
- operation and maintenance manuals: these are manuals containing all the information related to the systems (technical characteristics, installed components, and interventions carried out over time), as well as instructions for their correct use;
- safety certificates: these are documents certifying that the work has been carried out in compliance with occupational safety regulations and that adequate measures have been taken to protect workers during construction;
- energy performance certificates: these documents assess the energy efficiency of the building and may be required to verify compliance with energy regulations;
- occupancy certificate: this is a document requested fifteen days after the end of works and serves to certify the existence of safety, hygiene, health, and energy saving conditions in the building;
- warranty certificates: these are statements issued by contractors and suppliers, providing a warranty for a specific period on any construction defects;
- tax documents: these include invoices and receipts that serve to demonstrate payments made.
How to manage construction closeout documents
Managing all the documents required for the closure of construction work can be a complex challenge, especially due to the considerable amount of information to keep under control.
The most effective solution to simplify this process is to use a specific software for project document management. This is a centralized platform for archiving, organizing, and managing documents related to AEC sector projects (drawings, plans, specifications, compliance certificates, change orders, and punch lists). However, the benefits of this solution are not limited to simply archiving project documentation. In fact, you can:
- access to numerous templates (construction documents, project file, transmittals, and maintenance plans) that help create digital files quickly for any type of activity;
- the ability to track changes made to documents over time and easily access the most updated versions;
- automatic notification of deadlines, through the setting of personalized alerts to help meet delivery times and associated deadlines for different activities;
- planning access and authorization levels to limit who can view, edit, or approve project files. This is important to ensure that only authorized personnel can make changes to critical documents.
If you want to experience these and other features based on the digitized management of project documents, try the software for engineering document management. Use it for free for thirty days and start, like other professionals in the industry, to make the document management of your AECO projects simpler and more effective than ever, from the start to the completion of a construction project.