Construction contracts usually specify that time is of the essence in performing the contract work (as defined in the contract). The scheduling of work is often extremely important to the Public Entity for reasons including:
- The need to complete a project within a certain time frame or by a specific date.
- Limitations on the availability of required labor, materials, or equipment.
- The need to perform certain weather-sensitive construction operations.
- Cost impacts associated with idle labor and equipment.
Schedule delays and disputes over time extensions or impact costs are a major source of claims on a construction project, often because the contractor did not prepare a comprehensive or accurate baseline schedule or did not properly update the schedule as work progressed. The Public Agency's failure to detail the required information in the project's scheduling specification or to timely review schedule updates can also contribute to scheduling failures.
We provide guidance for the Public Agency on:
-Preparing a detailed, comprehensive scheduling specification.
- Examples of key activities to be detailed in the schedule.
- Practical solutions to ensure that the baseline schedule and all updates are reviewed and understood.
Most standard industry form contracts are silent on the key aspects of project scheduling. Critical elements that are not addressed clearly, if at all, include:
- Specific timing for submitting schedules and updates.
- Level of detail required in the schedules.
- Content of the information required in the schedules. Format of the schedules, including specific software requirements. Without mandating the scheduling detail, adequate project schedules likely will not be developed nor the multiple benefits of creating them achieved. When planning the project, the owner must determine the information and level of detail required to meet its objectives for project controls.