intelligent document search, cost control

A good Document Management System (DMS) should make a construction project more efficient with the latest revisions, markups, and document history. But employing a DMS is not enough to ensure a successful project. Does your DMS truly align with cost control efforts?

It is also essential to control the progression of tasks to get an accurate overview of the project’s status and compare it to the planned scope, schedule, and cost. Is the DMS automated, so the Project Manager does not have to manually update Project Cost Reports? If you are not sure, read on to see how you can leverage more cost control “magic” with your DMS.  

Alignment #1: Consistent Revision Control

If document revision control is not a priority for your project, document progress is not accurate. Therefore, your billings or earned cost reports are off. Without effective revision control, you may have to rely on a manual process to update or, worst of all, rely on out-of-date information for a project decision. Trying to rectify document versions with spreadsheets, ad hoc meetings, and phone calls is madness. And, as you would expect, this makes the Project Manager’s job exponentially more difficult, which is a stakeholder DADO thought about.

Automated document revision control helps guarantee all document versions are up to date across all devices and for the entire construction team. The benefits include:

  • Time savings. It is estimated that two hours a day can be wasted looking for the correct document version without a cloud-based, intelligent search DMS.
  • Better regulatory compliance. Subcontractors need to have the latest document revisions to collaborate with the project team and remain compliant with regulatory agencies.
  • Tracking Efficient, Concurrent Work. Obviously, having the entire team able to access the correct document version at the same time is much more efficient. But this also enables the PM to precisely know the project status, but billings and earned cost reports are far more accurate—which can seem like “magic.”

DADO Intelligent Search

Alignment #2: Automation

As mentioned, trying to align document revisions through a manual process like looking at spreadsheets and frustrated phone and text messages is not collaboration—it is sheer madness.

Having a DMS like DADO manages the review and approval process automatically. Mark-ups, reviews, and feedback are inserted automatically into the document. This means all document revisions are rolled-up into the work package. The Project Manager can see construction documents in real-time. This allows for more accurate milestones, better cost control—and a little bit more project “magic” to happen.

Alignment #3: Linked Document Integration

Even though work packages may be assembled, they may not be linked up correctly to your Project Cost Reports. This needs to be an automated function of your DMS. If you manually have to link documents back to the work package, this obviously could waste hundreds of hours of work. Documents linked manually could mean the gains in time and cost from other project areas could be lost.

An application like DADO aggregates all the data links, revisions, comments, etc., so when it is sent to Cost Control, they can easily bill for earned work. Having Cost Control on the same page as the Project Manager is the last bit of project cost “magic.”

Key Takeaways:

A document management system does not necessarily ensure better cost control unless other alignments happen. This includes:

  • The latest document revisions were controlled and intelligently searched across the entire project team.
  • Work packages are collected automatically with the necessary mark-ups, reviews, sign-offs, etc.
  • And, links to documents are automatically aggregated for cost control review.

If these alignments are in place, your project will experience some cost control “magic.”