The Permitting and Inspection Process

Inspection and procurement are probably the most crucial aspects of the pre-construction process. The owner may secure building permits before the project is let out for bids, but in most instances, this task is typically handled by the construction management team. If inspection and procurement are mismanaged, the entire project is at risk of failure.

Time is of the essence on virtually every construction project. A delayed permit can cause a contractor’s hair to turn gray before its time. Unfortunately, even when the contractor is on top of the permitting process, circumstances beyond their control may throw a monkey wrench into the plan. 

The construction management team must be vigilant in pursuing timely building permit release. The building permit established the inspection schedule for the project. The number of inspections required depends on the building authority jurisdiction and project type. It is very important that the superintendent be fully aware of the inspection requirements connected to the project. 

The Procurement Stage

To procure means to buy or obtain. The procurement stage of construction management is often referred to as “buying out” the job or purchasing the labor, materials, and equipment needed to complete the project. A great deal of the construction management function has to do with managing contracts – contracts to secure the labor/trades needed to perform the work and contracts to secure the materials/equipment that will be placed on the project. The two primary instruments associated with this effort are subcontracts and purchase orders. 

The procurement operation can be a very simple process handled on a local basis by the superintendent, or it can be a major department or division within the construction company whereby purchases are made on a regional or national level. Some projects warrant a combination of both approaches. 

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