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News & Press: 2017 News Items

Focus on learning the skills that impact performance on construction sites

13 October 2017  
Posted by: Bert vd Heever
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Focus on learning the skills that impact performance on construction sites, says Alusani® Course Leader

At the start of their careers, few construction site managers realise that they will need to be part magician, part musical conduction and part superhero. Effective construction site management requires a broad range of skills, from technical expertise to leadership, negotiation, team building, communication, and everything in between – but few construction site managers are equipped with these skills when they arrive on site.

Deon van Heerden, Alusani® Course Leader, says that empowering yourself with the required tools, knowledge and skillset can help overcome a number of challenges that are typically experienced on construction sites. Some of these challenges include improper risk management systems, poor communication, dealing with tight deadlines and lack of engagement from all stakeholders.

“Risk tolerance, for example, is a desirable trait for a construction site manager because projects rarely go exactly as planned. Having the right skills to manage quality, cost, scheduling, disinterest from certain stakeholders or vendors, and dealing with declining morale thanks to impossible deadlines can not only boost your risk tolerance, but it will help you develop contingency plans to deal with problems if and when they arise. Many construction site managers simply haven’t been exposed to adequate cost control, quality control and materials management systems, which are crucial to successfully completing a project in time,” says van Heerden.

Another important skill that is often lacking in the sector is proper site planning and layout. If this isn’t done properly, then everything from material delivery to site access for all the workers can quickly become a problem that will fall into the construction site manager’s sphere of responsibility.

“Construction site managers, site supervisors and team leaders can gain priceless insights from attending a course on construction site management. Besides learning new ideas and approaches to making their projects more effective and efficient, they also benefit from networking with other people in similar roles within the South African built environment. It will also help them prevent expensive time and cost implications by learning how to control the three biggest factors that impact their performance, namely manpower, materials and equipment,” says van Heerden.In the course that van Heerden presents on construction site planning, some of the topics that are covered include how to go about establishing a construction site, manage construction site teams, resolve conflict on site, why planning and scheduling is important (and how to do this effectively), document and drawing control, material management, and construction quality control systems, among other vital topics.

“One of the not-to-be-missed discussion topics that will greatly benefit construction site managers is a portion that we dedicate to health and safety regulations. There are so many different types of regulations and laws, and this course will give clear guidelines on the ones that you need to focus on specifically,” concludes van Heerden.

Van Heerden will be facilitating the Alusani® CPD-accredited Construction Site Management on 23 & 24 November 2017 at Melrose Place Guest Lodge in Johannesburg. A number of Alusani® CPD accredited courses that are held throughout the year. For more information, visit http://www.alusani.co.za/.