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Construction site work

Construction site work: definition and effective management

Construction site work refers to the necessary activities for site preparation before a construction project begins. Here is a comprehensive list and how to manage them smoothly!

Building construction is always preceded by a series of operations aimed at preparing a safe, functional and efficient area; capable of accommodating equipment, resources and project’s fulfilment of required activities.

These operations include excavation, land leveling, stabilization, installation of utility networks (such as electrical and water systems), foundation preparation and many other construction site works.

Planning, managing and overseeing all these activities is not a simple task, but it is essential to ensure the project’s successful outcome. However, you can streamline the entire process through specific construction management software that you can use for free for a 30-day trial. In this article, after a detailed analysis of a complete list of construction site works, I will explain how you can make the most of this software to manage them effectively.

Construction Management Software Interface - usBIM.resolver

Construction Management Software Interface – usBIM.resolver

What are construction site works?

A construction site is often defined as the location for carrying out building or civil engineering works.

In reality, more than just a physical location, a construction site represents a comprehensive process that transforms a design concept into reality, involving active participation from people, materials and equipment.

Properly managing this process involves meticulous planning and monitoring of several fundamental aspects, including:

  • Site preparation
  • Equipment and personnel organization
  • Resource procurement
  • Machinery and vehicle movement
  • Safety measures’ implementation
  • Installation and connection of utilities

Construction site works, therefore, encompass all the preparatory activities carried out before the actual project’s construction. In particular, according to plans and specifications, those which are crucial for ensuring the project’s execution and completion.

Why construction site works are important

Construction site works mark the starting point for a construction project’s physical realization. It’s evident that errors made in this initial phase will inevitably affect the subsequent stages and compromise the overall quality of the final result.

The success or failure of a construction project depends on how construction site works are executed.

For instance, poor foundation ground preparation may lead to safety and stability issues in the building over time. Inadequate logistics and pathway planning can cause delays in material and equipment deliveries. Additionally, the absence of appropriate safety measures can result in accidents or injuries, endangering the lives of workers.

These are intricate and complex aspects that may not be easy to manage, but when adequately planned, they ensure a project execution compliant with predetermined standards.

If managing construction site works seems almost impossible with the tools at your disposal, it’s essential to know that technology has made significant strides in this field.

With construction site management software, you can organize numerous tasks from anywhere, using your mobile devices. You can share real-time drawings and documents, coordinate on-site work, and resolve potential issues quickly and effectively using a system based on digital sticky notes.

For more information on the digital transformation of construction sites, read this in-depth article on digital construction sites. Explore how BIM, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things are revolutionizing traditional construction methods.

Comprehensive list of construction site works

The first step in proper construction site work planning is creating a list of activities that must be completed before actual construction work commences. To assist you in this task, below is a comprehensive list of preliminary operations essential for site preparation, which you can adapt to your needs and use as a reference for your planning.

Here are the crucial operations that you must consider for the efficient organization of your construction site:

Comprehensive List of Construction Site Works

Comprehensive List of Construction Site Works

Site survey

The survey process is indispensable for defining the terrain’s conformation and the building’s exact position within the lot. The professional responsible for this activity, usually a surveyor, carries out field measurements with specialized tools, analyzes and processes the collected data creating a topographic map of the area thus determining the precise foundation positions. Engineering survey is the process that ensures the correct positioning of buildings and infrastructure on the construction site.

Obstacle removal

To prepare the construction site, it’s necessary to clear the area of any potential obstacles. This involves removing trees, shrubs, bushes and any vegetation. Compliance with environmental regulations, which may impose restrictions based on the quantity and type of vegetation present in the area, is essential. Also, during this phase, takes place the demolition of existing structures that needs removal to allow the new building’s construction.

Site fencing

Fencing is a vital safety and confinement tool used to demarcate and mark the area where construction works takes place. Its purpose is to prevent unauthorized access to the construction site. Construction site fences can be made from various materials, such as perforated polyethylene nets or self-supporting metal panels. They must comply with precise requirements regarding the placement of signs and signaling devices as well as the visibility, stability, fencing and lighting guidelines.

Organization of functional areas

Materiality and organization of the site’s layout is based on the construction site layout. This involves defining pathways, access points, loading and unloading zones, machinery maneuvering spaces, material storage areas and containers or boxes for offices and services, among other aspects.

Excavation, Earthmoving, and Grading

Excavation, earthmoving, and grading works are essential operations to carry before construction begins. They aim to modify the natural terrain to achieve the desired foundation depth, creating a flat surface for construction. These works typically involve the use of heavy machinery and specialized equipment for the removal and transport of large amounts of rocky material. In addition, temporary support structures and shoring are often require to prevent the risk of ground collapses or landslides during and after excavation.

Drainage Works

The purpose of drainage works is to remove water from the site, enabling optimal excavation and other activities. Excavations often contain groundwater, making excavation and foundation waterproofing challenging. By analyzing geological data, the most suitable drainage system can be selected. Common methods include using a pump for water extraction, which is then discharged into a well or a gravel-filled pit, or installing diversion systems along the construction site perimeter to redirect groundwater away from the construction area.

Soil Stabilization

Using compaction rollers or vibratory machinery is necessary to consolidate and compact unstable soil, following a construction site excavation. Soil stabilization improves the soil or subsoil’s strength, where the structure’s foundations will be positioned, preventing potential future soil settlements.

Utility networks installation

The installation of utility networks is a fundamental aspect aimed at providing a suitable working environment during the construction process, ensuring the building functions safely and efficiently once completed. It involves installing components to supply electricity, water and gas while ensuring proper drainage of wastewater.

Effectively managing construction site works

Based on the project’s scope, characteristics and specific requirements, the initial list of construction site works will expand with additional tasks.

Regardless, it’s essential to understand that performing these works, even with careful planning, is never free from unforeseen challenges and issues that can make the construction process highly demanding.

One such challenge is communication and collaboration difficulties among the many parties involved in the project’s realization. In most cases, designers, contractors and on-site workers lack the appropriate tools to efficiently share construction site documents, exchange information about ongoing activities, provide instructions to address any challenges and more. This inevitably leads to costly delays and may adversely affect the quality of the final result.

Furthermore, construction sites are unpredictable environments. Numerous critical factors, such as weather conditions, uncertain soil conditions, material delivery delays, logistics issues, worker safety risks and more, can significantly impact work planning. Managing this complexity and promptly addressing unforeseen issues is no easy task. This is why it’s crucial to leverage construction management software. This solution can significantly streamline the planning and management of construction site works with a wide range of features. Below, I explain how you can make the most of some of this tool’s main functions:

  • Creation of visual planning cards for managing on-site challenges: These cards are instantly shared with the entire construction team and help simplify work coordination and improve communication with your team.
  • Clear definition of workflows: This feature allows you to specify the priority of tasks, participants, responsible parties, deadlines, approvals thus creating an efficient workflow to reduce uncertainties, eliminate unnecessary tasks and promote the involvement of the entire team.
  • Real-time project progress monitoring: This feature allows you to have constant control over the entire project’s progress. Information is recorded and can be monitored using any device and at any time, making it useful for promptly addressing any problems or bottlenecks that may slow down work.
  • Simplified sharing of documents and information: This function allows you to share any type of document directly in the cloud platform to minimize downtime related to information retrieval and increase on-site worker productivity.

I recommend evaluating the advantages and potential of this tool personally by activating a free 30-day trial. The video below demonstrates step by step how to create planning cards to manage challenges that may arise on-site.