Every Project Needs a Plan

A project plan provides the framework for each restoration project to complete on specification, on time and on budget. The plan defines the project’s expectations with the detail required guide the contractor’s crew and monitor project progress.

Every restoration project needs a plan. The plan has to respond to the restoration project at hand, the budget available from insurance coverage and the out of pocket expense that the property owner can handle. It also has to include a time line, so the project completes as quickly as good workmanship allows. A plan allows the contractor and the carrier to move into the future toward restoration, while giving the property owner a reasonable set of expectations.

Before any restoration plan can be made, the contractor assesses the scope of the restoration project. This assessment is made during the initial stabilization of the property. This first step in formulating any plan lays out what is in front of the contractor to restore on the property so that costs can be associated with the project, and a budget set for its completion. In order to stay in step with adjusters, restoration contractors use estimating programs developed for the insurance industry. These programs operate to balance the necessary costs of restoration and the insurance carriers object to minimize losses, which are measured in dollars.

The contractor uses the approved estimate, signed by the property owner, to generate the project plan, called a Scope of Work. Any work done at the request of the property owner beyond that required to restore the property, including material upgrades, are listed separately for the property owner. The Scope of Work lists the tasks to be completed room by room from ceiling to floor. The contractor meets with the crew assigned to the project, to discuss the order of tasks, and go over the required materials. The crew keeps a copy of the Scope of Work at the project site as a reference as they work through the tasks. At the end of each day, the crew reports their progress with each task for the day.

At the office, the crews day by day progress is measured against the projects milestones. As the contractor reaches these project milestones, such as framing and exterior restoration, he reports the milestones in order to be paid the agreed periodic draws. Sometimes, unexpected problems arise in the course of the restoration. The Scope of Work helps manage these problems, by providing a framework of the whole project. The contractor can discuss any additional cost with the property owner and the insurance carrier within this framework, and adjust the Scope of Work to include the tasks required.

Once all of the tasks in the Scope of Work are completed, the project is finished. The insurance carrier and the property owner make their final payments and the property owner signs a Certificate of Completion. Each project with a plan goes more smoothly and reaches completion sooner. Thats why insurance carriers and contractors agree that every project needs a plan!