The "Definition of Quality"
Managing Construction Quality
Construction Quality Management
Punchlist Management Software
The Cost of Quality
"Really, Really Good Reading"
1. The "Definition of Quality"
We have found, in our search for a definitive definition of "quality," that a single definition is impossible (I dare you to Google "definition of quality," you'll be going down a rabbit hole). The definition depends on who you are, and what you're talking about.
For the purpose of this "definition of quality" article, here is our definition....
OUR WORKING DEFINITION OF QUALITY
For the purpose of aiding owners and contractors in construction quality management, we propose the following definition of "Quality" and a "Quality Product."
Quality is fitness for use (Juran 1974), including meeting or exceeding needs, now and in the future, reliably, durably, with limited variation, and virtually defect free; and it helps if joy is sparked in those who recognize excellence.
A Quality Product meets or exceeds the customers needs, now and in the future. Aspects of a Quality Product include it being: (1.) fit for its intended use, (2.) cost effective, (3.) delivered on time, (4.) reliable, (5.) durable, (6.) with limited variation, (7.) virtually defect free; and (8.) it helps if joy is sparked in people who are able to recognize excellence. To deliver a Quality Product a system, with the objective to deliver a Quality Product, must be employed. Components of the system must include definition of: (A.) the customer needs; (B.) the product itself and acceptable variation; (C.) the budget/costs; (D.) the time of delivery; (E.) the process for creating the product; (F.) the process for verifying the parties are capable of "doing the right things right, every time"; (G.) the process for verifying the parties involved are actually "doing the right things right, every time" during creation of the product; (H.) and the process for verifying that the right things were done right, at the time of delivery.
2. Managing Construction Quality
Several articles included in the top 10 results for Managing Construction Quality emphasize the difficulty encountered in attempting to manage and/or ensure construction quality. Regulations, communication, measurement, and other techniques for ensuring management of quality are addressed.
Top 10 Results
First Time Quality Blog Post. This is a blog that discusses construction quality control plans and how they should outline a systematic process to manage them to consistently deliver quality results.
Managing Construction Quality by Pete Fowler Construction Services, Inc. This article outlines the Gold Old Days versus the New World in Managing Construction Quality. It outlines the DBSKV Construction Management method and highlights the ABCs of Risk Management. It explains project definition and integrates Quality Planning and having a quality management plan.
This is a link to a Purdue University Catalog for BCM 52500 – Managing Construction Quality and Production. It includes advanced techniques for assessing the success of construction project management including schedule cost, safety and quality measurements. Impacts of pre planning, human factors, and communication systems on quality and productivity.
This is an article outlining public policies for managing construction quality: the grand strategy of Singapore. This article argues that vulnerability of the construction industry to fluctuations in the economy requires the involvement of the government to maintain workload stability in order to deliver high quality standards in the industry.
This link refers to two articles: one on CDM (Construction Design and Management) Regulations and another on Stakeholder Management. The art of stakeholder management is proactively building on shared synergies and heading off any major confrontations. The easiest way to do this is to communicate and consult at all stages so the stakeholders’ needs are understood and impacts are understood by all stakeholders. CDM Regulations apply to the design and construction process on all projects, where construction is to take place (however small), from concept through completion and ultimate de-commissioning.
This article is on Property Analysis by Pete Fowler Construction Services, Inc. It outlines the services offered by PFCS, the types of clients, and links articles and whitepapers as well as the process that PFCS uses for its projects.
This is a repeat of the Singapore article, above.
This links to an article outlining what constitutes quality, how quality can be determined, the ISO definition of quality, difficulties encountered in the process of achieving product quality, development and maturation of IT in terms of improving quality management practices, and the steps for producing product quality.
This article discusses building commissioning: is it really the best method for managing construction quality? Building commissioning provides documented confirmation that building systems function according to criteria set forth in the project documents.
This article discusses a comprehensive process designed to assure quality, implementing quality control plans, assessing safety issues, and other items related to quality control in order to execute a successful project.
3. Construction Quality Management
There are several articles and links in our top ten results that emphasize processes and planning. It includes two training manuals and other writings spotlighting the failures in quality management.
Top 10 Results
eSUB: This is construction software on how to improve construction quality management. This lists some tips for improving construction quality management including; What is Construction Quality Management, Where Quality Management Fails, and Construction Quality Management Process Elements.
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Professional Development Support Center and U.S. Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC): This is a pdf of a student study guide for the construction quality management for contractors. This is to help familiarize contractor personnel with the Construction Quality Management concepts and procedures. This guide was designed to be used as a workbook during the training program. It is intended that, after the training, it be included in your office bookshelf as a helpful tool to be used when needed.
IRMI: This article discusses how to achieve the overall success to a construction project by describing the following steps: the processes of contractor quality management, quality assurance and quality control, elements of a quality management process, and managing quality.
University Northern Florida (UNF) Division of Continuing Education: This is a course catalogue for Construction Quality Management for Contractors (CQM-C).
Eventbrite: This is a website that lists different seminars including Construction Quality Management and other related construction topics.
Eventbrite: This is the same website as #5 but different dates that lists different seminars including Construction Quality Management and other related construction topics.
First Time Quality: This is a blog that illustrates a step by step process on how to write a project-specific quality plan. The following are the steps; project personnel, quality communications, quality assurance surveillance, subcontractors and suppliers, project quality specifications, inspections and tests, control of nonconformances, and project completion inspections.
Layton Construction: This is a manual that can be downloaded and created by Layton Construction for quality management. It includes core values that Layton Construction wants their employees and subcontractors to embrace.
AutoDesk BIM 360: This is software/app that allows the team to participate is quality inspections from their mobile devices. It includes (but not limited to) quality checklists and issues, punch lists, and quality issue resolution.
ETQ: This is a paper that can be downloaded and describes seven key elements for the implementation of a quality management system.They state “Research shows 71% of software rollouts fail, are late or are over budget.”
4. Lean Construction
Many if not all of the articles listed below in our top 10 results for Lean Construction emphasize stakeholders, relationships, and adhering to strict principles. All suggest that improvements are expected when integrating the facets of Lean Construction to project management.
Top 10 Results
This article covers the transformational improvement in the delivery of value to the stakeholders and improvement in the quality of the work environment for all participants. It claims that Lean delivers better employee retention and quality of life, safer worksites, reduced project waste and greater project value.
This article Lean methods seek to develop and manage a project through relationships, shared knowledge and common goals. Traditional silos of knowledge, work and effort are broken down and reorganized for the betterment of the project rather than of individual participants. The result? Significant improvements in schedule with dramatically reduced waste, particularly on complex, uncertain and quick projects.
This article claims that getting work to flow reliably and predictably on a construction site requires the impeccable alignment of the entire supply chain responsible for constructed facilities such that value is maximized and waste is minimized. With such a broad scope, it is fair to say that tools found in Lean Manufacturing and Lean Production, as practiced by Toyota and others, have been adapted to be used in the fulfillment of Lean construction principles.
This article explains that there are guiding principles that help firms achieve lower costs, reduced construction times, more productivity and efficient project management. They represent a holistic approach to the construction process. These are called the 6 Principles of Lean Construction, which include: Identify Value from the Customer’s Point of View, Define the Value Stream, Eliminate Waste, Flow of Work Processes, Pull Planning and Scheduling, Continuous Improvement.
This article is regarding lean construction and is aimed at maximizing value and minimizing costs involved during construction project maintenance, design, planning, and activation. Worldwide, the use of Lean construction increases the productivity of the construction industry.
This article explains that Lean construction is a way of designing production systems in a construction environment with the aim of decreasing time, effort, and a waste of materials.
This article argues that cutting costs, reducing construction times, increasing productivity and efficiently and effectively managing projects can all be achieved through successful implementation of lean principles. These principles should drive and guide you to discovering and developing the tools and methods to achieving the goals of lean construction and taking a more holistic approach to project delivery.
This article attempts to define Lean Construcion. Inviting all parties to the table to plan, design, estimate, budget and optimize. All stakeholders collaborate and plan together; owner, contractor, sub-contractors, designers, engineers, schedulers, cost engineers, etc. The team will often prototype a design, rather than forge ahead and build. Prototyping provides us with a visual and functional model that we test and evaluate.
This article explains applying Lean construction management principles, and some of the key benefits that can be achieved: Higher Quality Work, Increasing Employee Collaboration and Accountability, Greater Project Satisfaction, Increasing ROI and Improving Risk Management.
This article attempts to bridge the divide between Lean Construction and CPM (Critical Path Method). The key is digitizing and simplifying Lean to optimize its impact while providing a unified platform where Lean and CPM can coexist, thrive, compliment each other, and deliver compounded benefits.
5. Punchlist Management Software
The applications and articles in our top ten results for Punchlist Management Software focus on managing time, effort, and keeping construction professionals up to date with the current technology necessary for effective construction management.
Top 10 Results
The punch list app for the jobsite, Fieldwire. This is an app that provides punch list management. Fieldwire is a popular app that provides many features for a company that is looking for an app that provides an easy to manage punch list. Using the app you can easily include location on blueprints, checklists, categories, and photos when searching for construction deficiencies. This app can be used on your iPhone, iPad, and Android. Fieldwire makes QA/QC review easy to do with the ability of people across the organization to make updates.
Punch List Software. This is a list of Punch List Software companies can utilize. There are numerous apps companies can choose from but the top apps have reviews from numerous people.
Punch List Software Comparison. This is the comparison list of different software that companies use for punch list management. This is a good website to use if you are looking for a comparison tool to use when choosing a website.
SKYSITE is software that can be used for punch list management. This software claims to make punch list management simple by allowing you to see documents and the punch list side by side. This can all be done on your smartphone. Other features include adding custom fields, an app for QA/AC tasks, and hyperlinked task details.
Procure is software for construction. This software allows you to punch list items directly from the field, use QR codes, and maintain a real-time history of all actions. The company offers case studies, webinars, and dates for road shows.
FinishLine is a software app. This app is for construction professionals including owners, architects, subcontractors, etc. FinishLine results in a 30-40% reduction in time to inspect. Some perks include accurate data entry, visual navigation, status at a glance, and checklist ready. Training to use FinishLine is easy to use.
BuildUp is a punch list software app. This app allows construction teams to manage uses for the whole duration of the project. Some features of this app include issue management, collaboration of all construction project stakeholders, and is easy to use for the non-tech savvy users.
PlanGrid is a software app. PlanGrid offers the ability to track punch lists in one place, identify punch list items, and allow your team to complete work on time. You will also be able to close out and inspect straight from the field, identify cost or schedule impacts, and generate rich reports.
KO Punchlist is a software app. This apps is free to download, and every new project has a one time fee of $4.99. This app offers fully functional punch lists, can work offline and can combine punch lists created by other team members.
What is a Punch List? This is a post on how to effectively use a punch list. Punch lists are used to make sure the project has been completed and they are most effective when completed at the start of the project. Punch lists allow for contractors to make sure details are not forgotten and if misunderstandings arise they can be easily solved. Players involved in punch lists include owner/client, contractors, and subcontractors.
Punch List Manager. Punch List Manager is a warranty management software. Features include managing pending requests, service work, and the ability to use a collaborative schedule to know where field technicians and your trade partners are scheduled for inspection and repair.
6. The Cost of Quality
Our research into the Cost of Quality has revealed information related to the comprehensive concepts of poor versus good quality, what the Cost of Quality is and how to measure it, different types of quality costs and the four main categories of the Costs of Quality: appraisal, internal failure, external failure, and typical values.
Top 10 Results
ASQ. This is a website that gives a brief description of Cost of Quality and offers a membership that provides cost of quality support including tools, networking, and knowledge.
SixSigma: Cost of Quality Not Failure Costs. This is a blog that explains the cost of quality as a more comprehensive concept covering the cost of poor quality and the cost of good quality.
Wikipedia. This is someone’s definition of Quality Costs. It also includes quality cost area descriptions and examples defined by Armand V. Feigenbaum in a 1956 Harvard Business Review and Joseph M. Juran.
Quality One International, gives a brief description about cost of quality including an introduction, what it is, how to measure it. It’s a service that offers quality and reliability support for product and process development through consulting, training and project support.
Accounting Tools breaks quality costs into four categories and describes each: Prevention costs, appraisal costs, internal failure costs, external failure costs. 2/4/2018. It also offers accounting CPE courses and books.
Total Quality Management addresses the cost of quality including (but not limited to); definition, historical views, the definitions of the four categories of cost of quality. Joel E. Ross, 9/12/2018.
Tallyfy explains what the cost of quality and how it works including (but not limited to); how it’s evolved, three ways of perceiving cost of quality, the four categories, and quality-related workflows matter. Sonia Perason.
SCORTEX is a company that offers services for quality such as to automate visual quality control. They also explain how higher cost and lower cost differ and define cost of quality, the four categories, and give examples of each type of cost utilizing an automotive company.
This is an article from Quality Magazine explaining how to convey the definition of quality and explain cost of quality.
This is a blog that discusses the four categories; appraisal, internal failure, external failure, typical values, and has examples of each.
7. "Really, Really Good Reading" (a.k.a., Further Findings During the Proving the Obvious Using Google Research)
Managing Construction Quality 2008 by Peter D. Fowler (pfcs.co/7ghp)
PFCS Maturity Models article 5/2019 (pfcs.co/yv5f)
McKinsey's "Reinventing construction through a productivity revolution.” Some really good reading written by some "really smart people"! Includes what McKinsey calls "the productivity opportunity in construction" and the exploration of disruption in construction and its effects on the industry as a whole.
IRMI on Construction Quality Management. A thoughtful article emphasizing quality control plans and procedures.
ASTM E2813-18 Standard Practice for Building Enclosure Commissioning. A 19 page guide with referenced documents that serves "as a concise, authoritative, and technically sound practice for Building Enclosure Commissioning.”