What is Construction Management? Give the importance of Construction
Construction Management, or CM, is a service that uses specialized, project
management techniques to manage the planning, design, and construction of a
project, from its beginning to its end. The purpose of CM is to control a project's time,
cost and quality.
CM is compatible with all project delivery systems, including design-bid-build, designbuild, CM At-Risk and Public Private Partnerships. No matter the setting, a CM's
responsibility is to the owner, and to a successful project.
Importance of CM
Defines a plan and organizes chaos – projects are naturally chaotic. The primary
business function of project management is organizing and planning projects to tame
this chaos. A clear path mapped out from start to finish ensures the outcome meets
the goals of your project.
Establishes a schedule and plan – Without a schedule, a project has a higher
probability of delays and cost overruns. A sound schedule is key to a successful
Enforces and encourages teamwork – A project brings people together to share
ideas and provide inspiration. Collaboration is the cornerstone to effective project
planning and management.
Maximizes resources – Resources, whether financial or human, are expensive. By
enforcing project management disciplines such as project tracking and risk
management, all resources are used efficiently and economically.
Controls cost – some projects can cost a significant amount of money so on budget
performance is essential. Using project management strategies greatly reduces the
risk of budget overruns.
Manages change – projects always happen in an environment in which nothing is
constant except change. Managing change is a complex and daunting task. It is not
optional. Project management manages change.
Managing quality – Quality is the value of what you produce. Project management
identifies, manages and controls quality. This results in a high quality product or
service and a happy client.
Retain and use knowledge – projects generate knowledge or at least they should.
Knowledge represents a significant asset for most businesses. Left unmanaged
knowledge tends to quickly fade. Project management ensures that knowledge is
captured and managed.
Learning from failure – projects do fail. When they do, it is important to learn from
the process. Project management ensures that lessons are learned from project
success and failure.
Discuss different phases of Construction Project.
A standard construction project, in general, has following five major life cycle phases
Performance and monitoring
We have to create and evaluate the project in order to determine if it is feasible and if
it should be undertaken, at the beginning of the project. Here the project objective or
need is identified; this can be a business problem or opportunity.
A suitable response to the need is documented in a business case with recommended
solution options. A feasibility study is conducted to examine whether each option
clearly identifies the project objective and a final recommended solution is determined.
Many questions related to the issues of feasibility i.e. “can we do the project?” and
justification like “should we do the project?” are mentioned and faced.
When a solution is approved, a project is initiated to implement the approved solution.
For this, a project manager is appointed. At this stage, the major deliverables and the
participating work groups are identified. This is the time when the project team begins
to take shape. Approval is then required by the project manager to move onto the
detailed planning phase.
The planning phase involves further development of the project in detail to meet the
project’s objective. The team identifies all of the work to be done. The project’s tasks
and resource requirements are identified, along with the strategy for producing them.
In a broader sense identification of each activity as well as their resource allocation is
also carried out. A project plan outlining the activities, tasks, dependencies, and
timeframes is created.
The project manager is the one who coordinates the preparation of a project budget
by providing cost estimates for the labor, equipment, and materials costs. This is
mainly carried out by project scheduling software like MS project or PRIMAVERA.
These scheduling charts would help us to track the stages of our project as time
passes. This is also referred to as “scope management.”
The budget of the project already estimated is used to monitor and control cost
expenditures during project implementation.
Finally, we require a document to show the quality plan, providing quality targets,
assurance, and control measures, along with an acceptance plan, listing the criteria to
be met to gain customer acceptance. At this point, the project would have been
planned in detail and is ready to be executed.
This is the implementation phase, where the project plan is put into motion and the
work of the project is performed practically on site. It is essential to maintain control
and communicate as needed during each implementation stages.
Progress should be continuously monitored and appropriate adjustments are made
and recorded as variances from the original plan. A project manager is the one who
spends most of the time in this step. Throughout the project implementation, people
carry out the tasks, and progress information is being reported through regular project
team meetings.
The project manager uses this information to preserve control over the direction of the
project by comparing the progress reports with the project plan to measure the
performance of the project activities. If any deviation is found from the already defined
plan corrective measures are made.
The first option of action should always be to bring the project back to the original
plan. If that cannot happen, the team should record variations from the original plan
and record and publish modifications to the plan. all through this step, project
sponsors, and other key stakeholders are kept informed about the project’s status as
per the agreed rate and format of communication. The plan should be updated and
available on a regular basis.
Status reports should always highlight the probable end point in terms of cost,
schedule, and quality of deliverables. Each project deliverable produced should be
reviewed for quality and measured against the acceptance criteria.
When deliverables have been produced and the customer has agreed on the final
solution, the project is said to be ready for closure.
Performance and Monitoring Phase of Construction Project
This stage is all related to the measurement of progress and performance to make
sure that items are tracking with the project management scheduling. This phase
regularly happens at the same time as the execution phase.
Closure Phase of Construction Project
During the final closure, the importance is on providing the final deliverables to the
customer, that is:
o Handing over project documentation to the business
o Termination of supplier contracts
o Releasing project resources
o Communicate the closure of the project to all stakeholders.
o Last and final is to conduct lessons-learned studies to examine what went well
and what didn’t.
This type of analysis would make the knowledge of experience to be transferred back
to the project organization, which will help future project teams.
Discuss Indian construction industry.
The Construction industry of India is an important indicator of the development as it
creates investment opportunities across various related sectors. The construction
industry has contributed an estimated US$ 308 billion to the national GDP in 2011-12
(a share of around 19%).The industry is fragmented, with a handful of major
companies involved in the construction activities across all segments; medium-sized
companies specializing in niche activities; and small and medium contractors who
work on the subcontractor basis and carry out the work in the field. In 2011, there
were slightly over 500 construction equipment manufacturing companies in all of India.
The sector is labor-intensive and, including indirect jobs, provides employment to
more than 35 million people.
The Indian economy has witnessed considerable progress in the past few decades.
Most of the infrastructure development sectors moved forward, but not to the required
extent of increasing growth rate up to the tune of 8 to 10 per cent. The Union
Government has underlined the requirements of the construction industry.
With the present emphasis on creating physical infrastructure, massive investment is
planned in this sector. The Planning Commission has estimated that investment
requirement in infrastructure to the tune of about 14,500 billion or US$320 billion
during the 11th Five Year Plan period.
This is a requirement of an immense magnitude. Budgetary sources cannot raise this
much resources. Public Private Partnerships (PPP) approach is best suited for finding
the resources. Better construction management is required for optimizing resources
and maximizing productivity and efficiency.
Discuss Indian construction industry.
Construction Management is defined as the management of activities that are over
and above the normal architectural and engineering services conducted during the
pre-design, design and construction phases of a project that contribute to the control
of cost and time.
The five integral functions of management to run a highly successful enterprise are:
It is the basic function of management. It deals with chalking out a future course of
action & deciding in advance the most appropriate course of actions for achievement
of pre-determined goals.
Thus planning is a systematic thinking about ways & means for accomplishment of
pre-determined goals. Planning is necessary to ensure proper utilization of human &
non-human resources.
It is an intellectual activity and it also helps in avoiding confusion, uncertainties, risks,
wastages etc.
It is the process of bringing together physical, financial and human resources and
developing productive relationship amongst them for achievement of organizational
goals. To organize a business involves determining & providing human and nonhuman resources to the organizational structure. Organizing as a process involves:
o Identification of activities.
o Classification of grouping of activities
o Assignment of duties
o Delegation of authority and creation of responsibility.
It is the function of manning the organization structure and keeping it manned. Staffing
has assumed greater importance in the recent years due to advancement of
technology, increase in size of business, complexity of human behavior etc. Staffing
o Manpower planning
o Recruitment, selection & placement
o Training & development
o Remuneration
o Performance appraisal
o Promotions & transfer.
It is that part of managerial function which actuates the organizational methods to
work efficiently for achievement of organizational purposes. Direction is that inertpersonnel aspect of management which deals directly with influencing, guiding,
supervising, motivating sub-ordinate for the achievement of organizational goals.
Direction has following elements:
o Supervision
o Motivation
o Leadership
o Communication.
The purpose of controlling is to ensure that everything occurs in conformities with the
standards. An efficient system of control helps to predict deviations before they
actually occur. Therefore controlling has following steps:
o Establishment of standard performance.
o Measurement of actual performance.
o Comparison of actual performance with the standards and finding out
deviation if any
o Corrective action.
Discuss Stakeholder in Construction Project with their responsibilities.
The construction industry impacts all towns, cities, provinces and states. Although
issues may vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, similar stakeholders are involved
throughout the construction process in varying places.
understanding the role of each stakeholder and how different entities can work
together on behalf of industry and their clients.
The contractors are essentially project managers. They direct the building process
from initial planning to final approval. A contractor may have its own staff, consisting of
skilled trades people, or it may hire sub-contractors.
Contractors supervise the project timeline, manage the budget and work with other
stakeholders, such as regulatory bodies, to ensure the completed building meets all
code requirements.
Clients are the eventual owners of the building and typical funding agent of the project.
However, some real estate developers fund the development of buildings and then sell
them; they may only hold the title of owner while the project is under development.
The client in a real estate project ranges from a young family building its first home to
major real estate and commercial builders developing malls, office towers and condos.
Clients direct the style, content and overall look and feel of the building in conjunction
with the budget, timeline and available resources.
Government and industry are other stakeholders. Varying levels of government are
stakeholders in construction. Local government approves permits and gives the okay
for new developments.
State and federal government bodies set standards for fire, safety and other
residential and commercial building codes.
Unionized labor may also play a role in construction projects. Some skilled trades'
contractors and sub-contracted employees may be unionized workers; the contractor
will work in consultation with the union and ensure project human resources are
managed in accordance with the policies and processes of the union.
The Architect develops the buildings’ design, taking the Client’s brief and combining it
with the advice of the Specialist Consultants.
This then has to be developed to meet the requirements of the Building Regulations
and increasingly sustainability. Architects have significant involvement in product
Architects want to understand how your product contributes to their overall design and
the building’s performance.
They are often short on time so it is important, when presenting your product, that the
information is easy to understand and to the point. Provide tools, such as pre-written
specification documents, to make it easy for the Architect to specify your product.
Working with the architect will be a number of engineers that are responsible for
structural, mechanical and electrical design. The Structural Engineer is a key member
of the Project Team. Structural Engineers design the skeleton or structure of the
building, enabling Architects to focus their talents on creating a design that satisfies
their client’s demands.
Structural Engineers will monitor the progress of an Architectural project. They create
initial design models, using in-depth mathematical and scientific knowledge. When
work has begun, they inspect the work and advise contractors.
Structural Engineers must ensure their designs satisfy given criteria that they are safe,
serviceable and perform well. They will want to understand how your product meets
their performance requirements.
What is Project Organization? Also discuss its merits and demerits.
A project organization is a structure that facilitates the coordination and
implementation of project activities. The structure defines the relationships among
members of the project management and the relationships with the external
Merits and Limitations of the Project Organization:
Following are the chief merits of a project organization:
1. Concentrated attention on project work: In a project organization, there is full and
concentrated attention of the project manager on project work; as the project manager
has no work other than attending to project management. He has full powers to coordinate and control project activities. In fact, during continuance of the project,
functional managers renounce their authority over their project-team personnel, in
favor of the project manager.
2. Advantages of team specialization: The project team formed for purposes of
undertaking project work consists of specialists drawn from many functional areas.
This phenomenon makes available to the project organization, the advantages of team
3. Ability to cope with environmental influences: Due to the leadership of the project
manager coupled with specialized knowledge of project team members, the project
organization is in a better position to cope with environmental challenges. In fact, one
of the reasons for creating a project structure is to successfully combat environmental
4. Timely completion of the project: The project organization ensures a timely
completion of projects; without disturbing the normal functioning of the whole
Following are the chief limitations of a project-organization:
Accentuated problems of co-ordination: In a project organization, there are
increased problems of co-ordination; because of the diverse viewpoints of team
specialists. As a matter of fact, specialists have a tendency to over-emphasize on
their specialized viewpoints vis-a-vis the manner of project designing and
implementation. This tendency of specialists creates a serious headache for the
project manager; who, all the time, may be found busy in reconciling conflicting
viewpoints of specialists getting little time for attention towards project progress.
Unclearly defined relationship: Usually, in a project organization, the relationships
between the project manager and functional specialists are not very clearly defined.
This situation may lead to tension between them; resulting in poor human relations, in
the project organization. Ultimately, the project work efficiency may be considerably
Feeling of insecurity among personnel: Usually, there is a feeling of uncertainty in
the minds of the project team personnel as to where they will seek shelter; after a
particular project (on which they were engaged) is over. This feeling of uncertainty
about assignment creates feeling of insecurity among personnel; and then they tend
to unduly stretch the existing project work-causing delays in timely completion of the
Duplication of efforts: A project organization suffers from the limitation of duplication
of efforts, involved in the completion of project activities. When e.g. in a project
organization more than one or two projects is/are undertaken; it is quite likely that the
same types of activities might be duplicated, during the completion of various projects.
This phenomenon ultimately tells upon the overall organizational efficiency and
Discuss forms of Construction Organization structure.
The adoption of a particular form of organizational structure largely depends upon the
nature, scale and size of the business. The organizational structure is primarily
concerned with the allocation of activities or tasks and delegation of authority.
1. Line Organization:
Line organization is the simplest and the oldest type of organization. It is also known
as scalar organization or military type of organization. In the words of J.M. Lundy, “It is
characterized by direct lines of authority flowing from the top to the bottom of the
organizational hierarchy and lines of responsibility flowing in an opposite but equally
direct manner.”
An important characteristic of such type of organization is superior-subordinate
relationship. Superior delegates authority to another subordinate and so on, forming a
line from the very top to the bottom of the organization structure. The line of authority
so established is referred as “line authority.” Under this type of organization authority
flows downwards, responsibility moves upwards in a straight line. Scalar principle and
unity of command are strictly followed in line organization.
This type of organization resembles with the army administration or military type of
organization. As in case of military, commander-in-chief holds the top most position
and has the entire control over the army of the country, which in turn is developed into
main area commands under major-generals.
Each area has brigade under brigadier-generals, each brigade is fabricated into
regiments under its colonels, each regiment into battalions under majors, each
battalion into companies under captains, each company sub-divided under its
lieutenants and so on drawn to corporal with his squad.
Types of line organization:
Line organization is of two type’s viz. (a) Simple or Pure Line Organization (b)
Departmental Line Organization
Simple or Pure Line Organization:
In the ‘Pure Line organization’ the activities (at any level of management) are the
same with each man performing the same type of work and the divisions primarily
exist for the purpose of control and direction. In practice, such type of organization
rarely exists.
The following diagram shows the pure line organization:
The departmental divisions are made only for the sake of convenience and control. All
workers perform the same type of work.
Departmental Line Organization:
The departmental type of line organization divides the enterprise into different
departments which are convenient for control purposes. There is a unity of control and
line of authority flows from top to the bottom. The whole organization is put under the
overall control of Chief Executive who may be called by the name of General
Manager. Different departments are put under the control of Departmental Managers.
Departmental managers get orders directly from the General Manager. The managers
are not dependent upon each other. Every department has its own line of
organization. There may be deputy managers, supervisors, workers in every
department. The deputy managers get orders from the departmental manager and in
turn pass them on to the supervisors.
The orders ultimately reach the workers who actually execute them. Various
departmental managers are equal to each other in status and authority. They do not
exchange instructions with each other. Any communication between them is routed
through their immediate boss. The following figure explains the departmental line of
The system of line organization will be successful if following conditions are present:
o There should be a hierarchical arrangement of giving commands. The
subordinates should get commands only through their immediate superiors. The
links in the chain of command should not be skipped. This type of organization
helps in co-ordination and control.
o There should be a single line of command. One person should get orders from one
supervisor only.
o All persons at the same level of authority should be independent of one another.
o The number of subordinates should be such that they are properly supervised.
Merits of Line Organization:
o Simplicity: Line organization is simple to establish and can be easily understood by
the employees. There is no complexity in the organization because every person is
accountable to only one boss. Everybody knows his work and also to whom he is
responsible. So it can be operated simply and clearly.
o Identification of Authority and Responsibility: Line organization helps in fixing
authority and responsibility of each and every person in the organization. The
authority is given with reference to the assignment of task. The authority should be
commensurate with the work assigned. The allocation of work will also help in fixing
responsibility of various individuals. So line organization enables the fixation of
authority and responsibility.
o Co-Ordination: The hierarchy in management helps in achieving effective coordination. The general manager is in-charge of all the departments and he can
easily co-ordinate the work of various departments. At departmental level manager
is in charge and he can direct the activities of his juniors.
o Effective Communication: The chain of command goes from top to bottom. There
is a direct link between the superior and his subordinate, both can communicate
properly among themselves. The reactions of subordinates also reach top
management in a short span of time.
o Economical: Line organization is easy to operate and less expensive. There are no
staff personnel to advice line officers. Line officers take their own decisions without
looking to specialized personnel. This greatly reduces the establishment cost.
o Quick Decisions: Only one person is in charge of a department or division. He has
to take various decisions by himself. There are no staff personnel for consultation
too. This enables a manager to take prompt decisions If a decision making process
involves the consultation of a number of person’ then there are likely to be delays in
deciding things. In line organization only departmental head is required to take
decisions and he will not waste time in deciding things.
o Unity of Command: In line organization every person is under the command of
one boss only. This type of organization is in accordance with the principle of scalar
o Effective Control and Supervision: In line organization every person is under the
command of one boss only. This type of organization is in accordance with the
principle of scalar chain.
o Executive Development: Under this system the departmental head is involved in
taking and executing various decisions. His task is challenging and he is expected
to discharge his responsibility in an efficient way. This helps an executive to learn
many things and develop his capabilities.
o Flexibility: Since the manager has to take all important decisions, he can make
changes if new situation warrants. He need not to waste time in getting instructions
from above. He can take a decision according to the requirements of the situation.
Demerits of Line Organization:
o Excess Work: In line organization too much is expected from executives. They are
expected to take numerous decisions and supervise the work of subordinates under
them. The work load of executives goes on increasing with the expansion and
diversification of the unit. The line office cannot devote sufficient time to each and
every work and are over loaded with responsibilities.
o Lack of Specialization: The lack of managerial specialization is the demerit of line
organization. The line officers cannot be experts in every line of business. Since they are to
take decisions with regard to every aspect of business, the quality of decisions may suffer.
The officers will have to depend heavily on subordinates for advice.
o Lack of Co-ordination: There is a lack of co-ordination among various departments. All
departmental heads try to run the departments in their own way and according to their
suitability. There may be a lack of operational uniformity among various departments. This
may become the reason for lack of co-ordination among different departments. This may
become the reason for lack of co-ordination among different departments.
o Improper Communication: The ultimate authority for taking all decisions lies with
line officers. The line officers may become autocratic and start deciding things
without consulting their subordinate. The subordinates start keeping distance from
the superiors. The decisions are implemented without comments even if these
appear to be detrimental to the interests of the organization. The subordinates do
not convey their reactions or the reactions of workers to the superiors. The lack of
communication creates many problems for the smooth conduct of business.
o Lack of Initiative: In line organization final decision-making is taken by the top
management. The lower level officials do not show initiative in suggesting new
things. They feel that their suggestions may not carry weight with their superiors so
they avoid taking any type of initiative.
o Favoritism: There is a scope for favoritism in line organization. The officers work
according to their whims and preferences. They judge the performance of persons
according to their own yardsticks. There is a likelihood that some persons may be
given favors and deserving persons, on the other hand, may be ignored.
o Instability: The business is dependent upon some key persons and the sudden
disappearance of such persons from the scene may create instability in the
business. There is also a lack of grooming the new persons for taking up important
work. The managerial growth also suffers because lower level persons are not
involved in decision-making process.
2. Functional Organization:
F.W. Taylor, who is better known as the father of scientific management developed
the concept of ‘Functional Organization’. As the very name suggests, functional
organization implies that the organization should be based on various functions.
Taylor’s functional approach is mainly based on principle of specialization and tries to
bring about organizational balance.
The principle of specialization embodies the concept that both the workers and the
supervisors can develop a higher degree of proficiency by separating the manual from
the mental requirements. Taylor recommended that there should be fictionalization
even at the shop level where workers have to produce goods. He felt that the usual
practice of putting one foreman in-charge of some 40 to 50 workers should be
Taylor’s concept of Functional Foremanship (as he puts it), is a system comprising of
eight different foremen discharging different functions. Every worker in the
organization is directly connected with these foremen.
The following diagram shows Taylor’s Functional Foremanship:
While developing the concept of Functional Foremanship, F.W. Taylor suggested that
it is unscientific to overload a foreman with entire responsibility of running a
department. He advocated that direction of work should be decided by functions and
not be mere authority.
He thought that to be successful in performing his duties a foreman should possess
various qualities viz., education, special or technical knowledge, manual dexterity or
strength, tact, energy, honesty, common sense and good health”.
Spriegel has nicely explained Functional Organization. “Each worker, instead of
coming into contact with one superior, would receive his orders from a group of
specialized supervisors, each of whom performs a particular function.”
Functional organization also operates at higher level of management. The whole work
in the organization is divided in various departments. Similar type of work and
transactions are put in one department under the control of a departmental manager
or head. Various departments are also known as functional areas of management viz.,
Purchases, Sales, Finance, Production, and Personnel etc. The respective managers
of these departments will be responsible for carrying out various activities of their
departments in the organization.
For example, marketing manager will be responsible for carrying out marketing
activities and personnel manager will be responsible for looking after the personnel
matters in all the departments of the organization.
The underlying idea of functional organization at the top level of management is that a
subordinate anywhere in the organization will be controlled and commanded directly
by number of managers operating in different departments .
Merits of Functional Organization
Following are the main benefits derived from functional organization:
o Specialization: This system derives the benefits of specialization. As every
functional in-charge is an expert in his area, he will guide using his specialization
and with the help of the subordinates, try to attain the specified objectives.
o Increased efficiency: This type of organization ensures enhanced efficiency as the
workers operate under the expert and competent personnel and perform limited
o Limited duties: The functional foremen have to carry out the limited number of
duties concerning their area of work. This considerably reduces the burden of work
and makes possible for the foreman to carry out the work in the best possible
o Scope for expansion: Functional organization offers a great scope for expansion
of business enterprise without any dislocation and loss of efficiency as each man
grows on account of his own specialty.
o Flexibility: It is flexible pattern of organization. A change in organization can be
made without disturbing the whole organization. In the words of Louis A. Allen,
“Function as a whole can he cut by eliminating positions at the lower levels without
seriously affecting its total performance.”
Disadvantages of Functional Organization:
Despite the above advantages, this type of organization suffers from the following
o Conflict in authority: The authority relationship violates the principle of ‘unity of
command’. It creates several bosses instead of one line authority. It leads to conflict
and confusion in the minds of the workers to whom they should obey and whom
they should ignore.
o Difficulty in pinpointing responsibility: On account of the non-application of the
principle of ‘unity of control’, it is very difficult for the top management to fix the
responsibility of a particular foreman. There arises a tendency for shirking of
o Expensive: This pattern of organization is quite impracticable and expensive.
Multiplicity of experts increases the overhead expenditure. The small organizations
cannot afford to install such a system.
o Discipline is slackened: Discipline among the workers as well as lower
supervisory staff is difficult to maintain as they are required to work under different
bosses and this may hamper the progress of the organization.
o Lack of co-ordination: Appointment of several experts in the organization creates
the problem of co-ordination and delay in decision-making especially when a
decision requires the involvement of more than one specialist.
3. Line and Staff Organization:
The line and staff organization is an improvement over the above mentioned two
systems viz, line organization and functional organization. The line organization
concentrates too much on control whereas the functional system divides the control
too much.
The need was, therefore, for a system that will ensure a proper balance between the
two. The need has been fulfilled by line and staff organization. The system like line
organization also owes its birth to army.
The commanders in the field who are line officers are assisted by the staff that helps
them in formulating strategies and plans by supplying valuable information. Similarly in
organization, line officers get the advice of the staff which is very helpful in carrying on
the task in an efficient manner. However, staff’s role is advisory in nature. Line officers
are usually assisted by staff officers in effectively solving various business problems.
The staff is usually of three types viz
Personal Staff:
This includes the personal staff attached to Line Officers. For example, personal
assistant to general manager, secretary to manager etc. The personal staff renders
valuable advice and assistance to Line Officers.
Specialized Staff:
This category includes various experts possessing specialized knowledge in different
fields like accounting, personnel, law, marketing, etc. They render specialized service
to the organization.
For example, a company may engage a lawyer for rendering legal advice on different
legal matters. Similarly, it may engage a chartered accountant and a cost accountant
for tackling accounting problems.
General Staff:
This comprises of various experts in different areas who render valuable advice to the
top management on different matters requiring expert advice.
Advantages of Line and Staff Organization
 Important advantages of Line and Staff Organization are:
o Specialization: This type of organization is based on planned specialization and
brings about the expert knowledge for the benefit of the management.
o Better decisions: Staff specialists help the line manager in taking better decisions
by providing them adequate information of right type at right time.
o Lesser Burden on line officers: The work of the line officers is considerably
reduced with the help of staff officers. Technical problems and specialized matters
are handled by the Staff and the routine and administrative matters are the concern
of Line Officers.
o Advancement of research: As the work under this type of organization is carried
out by experts, they constantly undertake the research and experimentation for the
improvement of the product. New and economical means of production are
developed with the help of research and experimentation.
o Training for line officer: Staff services have proved to be an excellent training
medium for Line Officers.
Disadvantages of Line and Staff Organization:
o Conflict between line and staff authorities: There may be chances of conflict
between line and staff authorities. Line Officers resent the activities of staff
members on the plea that they do not always give correct advice. On other hand
staff officials complain that their advice is not properly carried out.
o Problems of line and staff authority: There may be confusion on the relationship
of line and staff authorities. Line Officers consider
o Lack of responsibility: As the staff specialists are not accountable for the results,
they may not perform their duties well.
o The system is quite expensive: The appointment of experts involves a heavy
expenditure. Small and medium size organizations cannot afford such a system.
o More reliance on staff: Some of the line officers excessively rely on the staff. This
may considerably reduce the line control.
Discuss Levels of Management.
The term “Levels of Management’ refers to a line of demarcation between various
managerial positions in an organization. The number of levels in management
increases when the size of the business and work force increases and vice versa.
The level of management determines a chain of command, the amount of authority &
status enjoyed by any managerial position. The levels of management can be
classified in three broad categories:
o Top level / Administrative level
o Middle level / Executory
o Low level / Supervisory / Operative / First-line managers
Managers at all these levels perform different functions. The role of managers at all
the three levels is discussed below:
Top Level of Management
It consists of board of directors, chief executive or managing director.
The top management is the ultimate source of authority and it manages goals and
policies for an enterprise.
It devotes more time on planning and coordinating functions.
The role of the top management can be summarized as follows o Top management lays down the objectives and broad policies of the enterprise.
o It issues necessary instructions for preparation of department budgets, procedures,
schedules etc.
o It prepares strategic plans & policies for the enterprise.
o It appoints the executive for middle level i.e. departmental managers.
o It controls & coordinates the activities of all the departments.
o It is also responsible for maintaining a contact with the outside world.
o It provides guidance and direction.
o The top management is also responsible towards the shareholders for the
performance of the enterprise.
Middle Level of Management
The branch managers and departmental managers constitute middle level.
They are responsible to the top management for the functioning of their department.
They devote more time to organizational and directional functions.
In small organization, there is only one layer of middle level of management but in big
enterprises, there may be senior and junior middle level management.
Their role can be emphasized as o They execute the plans of the organization in accordance with the policies and
directives of the top management.
o They make plans for the sub-units of the organization.
o They participate in employment & training of lower level management.
o They interpret and explain policies from top level management to lower level.
o They are responsible for coordinating the activities within the division or
o It also sends important reports and other important data to top level management.
o They evaluate performance of junior managers.
o They are also responsible for inspiring lower level managers towards better
Lower Level of Management
Lower level is also known as supervisory / operative level of management. It consists
of supervisors, foreman, section officers, superintendent etc. According to R.C. Davis,
“Supervisory management refers to those executives whose work has to be largely
with personal oversight and direction of operative employees”.
In other words, they are concerned with direction and controlling function of
management. Their activities include o Assigning of jobs and tasks to various workers.
o They guide and instruct workers for day to day activities.
o They are responsible for the quality as well as quantity of production.
o They are also entrusted with the responsibility of maintaining good relation in the
o They communicate workers problems, suggestions, and recommendatory appeals
etc to the higher level and higher level goals and objectives to the workers.
o They help to solve the grievances of the workers.
o They supervise & guide the sub-ordinates.
o They are responsible for providing training to the workers.
o They arrange necessary materials, machines, tools etc for getting the things done.
o They prepare periodical reports about the performance of the workers.
o They ensure discipline in the enterprise.
o They motivate workers.
o They are the image builders of the enterprise because they are in direct contact
with the workers.
What is Construction Planning? Discuss necessity of Construction Planning.
Construction planning is a fundamental and challenging activity in the management
and execution of construction projects. For example, the extent to which subcontractors will be used on a project is often determined during construction planning.
Project planning is part of project management, which relates to the use of schedules
such as Gantt charts to plan and subsequently report progress within the project
Construction planning and preparation play a very important role in today's
construction. The effectiveness of the planning and preparation lead to the success of
a project including the quality and time consumed in completing the project.
A good and properly planned construction site can improve the efficiency and even the
safety of the construction operation. Therefore, to construct a good building, the step
of planning cannot be eliminated or skipped in order to save the construction time and
It is the process of selecting a particular method and the order of work to be adopted
for a project from all the possible ways and sequences in which it could be done. It
essentially covers the aspects of ‘What to do’ and ‘How to do it’.
Planning helps to minimize the cost by optimum utilization of available resources.
Planning reduces irrational approaches, duplication of works and inter departmental
Planning encourages innovation and creativity among the construction managers.
Planning imparts competitive strength to the enterprise.
Explain types of Construction Project Planning.
There are several types of project planning. The three major types of construction
project planning are:
o Strategic planning: this involves the high-level selection of the project objectives.
o Operational planning: this involves the detailed planning required to meet the
strategic objectives.
o Scheduling: this puts the detailed operational plan on a time scale set by the
strategic objectives.
Strategic planning
This is done by the owner’s corporate planners. In this they decide what project to
build and what the completion date has to be to meet the owner’s project goals. The
construction teams formulate the master construction execution plan within the
guidelines set in the strategic and contracting plans.
Operational Planning
Operational planning is done by construction teams. They ask certain questions
before making operational plan for the project. They are:
o Will the operational plan meet the strategic planning target date?
o Are sufficient construction resources and services available within the company to
meet the project objectives?
o What is the impact of the new project on the existing work load?
o Where will we get the resources to handle any overload?
o What company policies may prevent the plan from meeting the target date?
o Are usually long delivery equipment or materials involved?
o Are the project concepts and design firmly established and redy to start the
o Is the original contracting plan still valid?
o Will it be more economical to use a fast-track scheduling approach?
All these questions are answered in preparation of the construction master plan before
detailed scheduling of the project.
Master Plan
A construction master plan addresses how will the project be planned, organized, and
major work activities be controlled to meet the goals of finishing the work on time,
within budget and as specified.
Contracting plan is the major consideration in formulating the master construction
plan, which answers a lot of questions. Questions related to government and social
restraint, resources for construction, owner’s policies or legal requirements,
contractual requirement affecting master plan are not answered by contracting plan.
Answers to these questions must be found during the development of the project
execution plan.
Project execution plan shall be reviewed and evaluation shall be done as the work
progresses. Minor variations are common but major changes shall be considered with
extreme caution.
The construction project master plan shall be completed and approved and after that
time plan (scheduling), budget plan, resource plan shall be carried out.
List out methods of Construction Planning or Scheduling and explain all methods
The four scheduling techniques widely used in construction projects are:
o Bar Charts and Gantt Bar Charts
o Network Analysis and Critical Path Method
o Line of Balance
o Q Scheduling
Bar Chart
Bar Charts are the most simple and easiest way to generate construction schedules.
It is widely used due to its simplicity and multiple adaptations to numerous events. A
bar chart is formed with a list of activities, specifying the start date, duration of the
activity and completion date of each activity, and then plotted on a project timescale.
The detailed level of the bar chart depends on your project complexity and the
intended use of the schedule.
A variation of the bar chart schedule is the linked bar chart. A linked bar chart uses
arrow and lines to tie the activities and subsequent items, specifying the successors
and predecessors of every activity. The previous activities are linked one to another to
demonstrate that one activity must be completed before the other activity can start.
Bar charts are useful and used to detect the amount of resources needed for one
particular project. Resource aggregation is done by adding resources vertically in the
schedule. The purpose of this aggregation is to estimate the work production and
establishing estimates for man-hour and equipment needed.
Advantages of Gantt Chart
o It is easy to understand.
o It gives clarity of dates.
o It enables time management.
o It brings efficiency.
o It ensures accountability in terms of timeline.
o It expects coordination among stakeholders in order to deliver things as per Gantt
Disadvantages of Gantt Chart
o They can become extraordinarily complex.
o The size of the bar does not indicate the amount of work.
o They need to be constantly updated.
o Difficult to see on one sheet of paper.
Examples Related Bar Chart
Equipment consists of three parts A, B and C. These are assembled together after
manufacture. Part A is of cast iron which requires a pattern and a mould, Part B is to
be machined on a special machine and hence special machine is to be purchased
and erected. Part C needs special heat treatment before assembly. The assembly has
to be tested with a specially fabricated rig before dispatch. The time needed by each
activity is given below. Draw the bar chart.
The bar chart for this example is given in following figure:
From the study of the various activities, it is found that activity 1, 4, 5 and 8 can be
started concurrently, i.e., at the same time. These have been indicated in the bar
chart. Activity 2 begins after the completion of activity 1. Similarly activity 3 begins
after the completion of activity 2. Bar chart shows that activity 6 can begin when the
activity 5 is over and activity 7 begins when activity 6 is over.
Similarly activity 9 can begin when activity 8 is over and activity 10 can begin when
activity 7 is over. From the bar chart, it is found that project completion time is 16
days, although total time required by all the activities is 30 days. In this way bar chart
gives information, when and where the various activities should be started and end so
that project completion time is minimize.
Draw a bar (Gantt) chart for the following examination work:
All the above activities are independent and in the order of sequence. The total duration is 26 days.
The Gantt chart can be drawn as shown in figure
Draw a bar (Gantt) chart for the following examination work:
All the above activities are independent and in the order of sequence. The total duration is 9
days. The Gantt chart can be drawn as shown in figure
Here in this problem, activity A, B and C are independent. It means activity B will begin when
activity A is over and activity C will begin when activity B is over.
Activity D consumes 1 day and this can be started simultaneously with activity C, on the 8th
day and thus project completion time will be 8 days. Thus one day can be saved in this way.
Draw a bar (Gantt) chart for the following examination work:
The details of activities are as under:
Make dimensional sketches of parts – 2 days
Make legs – 2 days
Make seat – 3 days
Make back – 3 days
Assemble parts – 2 days
In this problem after activity (i) is over, activities (ii), (iii) and (iv) can be started at the same
time, i.e., concurrent activities. These activities are independent one. Therefore project
completion time will be 2 + 3 + 2 = 7 days. Bar chart will be as shown in Figure.
 Define the following term.
o Critical Path: The critical path is the longest sequence of activities in a project plan
which must be completed on time for the project to complete on due date.
o Event: An event is a specific instant of time, which makes the start or end of an
activity. Event consumes neither time nor resources.
o Activity: An activity is the actual performance of the task and requires time and
resources for its completion. It is the work required to complete a specific task.
o Predecessor activity: The activity proceeding to any given activity is called the
predecessor activity.
o Successor activity: The activity succeeding to any given activity is called the
successor activity.
o Duration: Duration is the estimated or actual time required to complete a task or an
o Earliest start time (EST): It is defined as the earliest possible time at which an
activity can start. It is calculated by moving from first to last event in a network
o Earliest finish time (EFT): It is the earliest possible time at which an activity can
EFT = EST + duration of that activity.
o Latest finish time (LFT): It is calculated by moving from last event to the first event
of the network diagram.
o Latest start time: It is the latest possible time by which an activity can start.
LST = LFT – duration of that activity.
o Float or Slack: Stack is with reference to an event and float is with reference to an
activity. Float is the difference between time available for completing an activity and
the time necessary to complete an activity.
o Total Float: It is the time span by which the starting and finishing an activity can be
delayed without delaying the completion of the project. It is the additional time,
which a non critical activity can consume without increasing the project duration.
o Critical path: It is the sequence of critical activities, which decide the total project
duration. A critical path consumes maximum resources. It is the longest path and
consumes maximum time. It is the one, which connects the events having zero
minimum float.
o PERT (Project Evaluation and Review Technique): It is a probabilistic model with
uncertainty in activity duration. It is an event oriented approach used for planning,
controlling and reviewing the project. The expected time for each activity can be
calculated using three time estimatesOptimistic time (to)
Most likely time (tm)
Pessimistic time (tp)
It is used to find the applications in projects where resources (3m – en, materials
and money) are always made available as and when required.
Optimistic time (to): Optimistic time, expressed as ‘to‘, represents estimate of
minimum possible time by which an activity can be completed assuming that
everything is in order according to the plan and there can be only minimum amount
of difficulty.
Most likely time (tm): Most likely time, expressed as ‘tm‘, represents estimate of
time for completion of an activity, which is neither optimistic nor pessimistic,
assuming that things should go in a normal way, and if the activity is repeated
several times, in most of the cases, it will be completed in time represented by tm.
Pessimistic time (tp): it is expressed as ‘tp’ represents estimate of maximum
possible time by which an activity can be completed assuming that things may not
be in accordance with the plan and there can be incidence of difficulties in carrying
out the activity.
o Free Float: Free float is the duration of time that an activity can be delayed without
delaying the project’s estimated completion time and without delaying the start of
any succeeding activity.
Interfering Float: Interfering float is the time available to delay an activity without
delaying the project’s estimated completion time, but delaying an activity into
interfering float will delay the start of one or more following non-critical activities.
o Total Float: Total float is the amount of time an activity can be delayed without
delaying the project completion date. On a critical path, the total float is zero. Total
float is often known as the slack.
o Independent Float: Independent float is that portion of the total float within which
an activity can be delayed for start without affecting the float of the preceding
activities. It is computed for an activity by subtracting the tail event slack from its
total float.
Expected Time: In Program Evaluation and Review Technique (PERT), a weighted
average time that is widely used in a real life application of PERT to a complex
project, where the completion times for activities are not certain. First, estimate
three possible duration times for each activity: an optimistic, a most likely, and a
pessimistic time.
o A weighted average of these three time estimates is then calculated to establish the
expected time for the activity. The formula applies to a weight of one to both the
optimistic and the pessimistic estimates and a weight of four to the most likely
o Standard Deviation and Variation: Standard Deviation (SD) measures the amount
of Variation from Average or Mean. Average or Mean is represented by Weighted
Average calculated using PERT formula. The Standard Deviation, which is a good
measure of the variability of each activity is calculated by the rather simplified
𝑆𝑫 =
(𝒕𝒑 − 𝒕𝒐)
The Variance is the Square of the Standard Deviation.
Give the difference between CPM and PERT
Project management can be understood as a systematic way of planning, scheduling,
executing, monitoring, controlling the different aspects of the project, so as to attain
the goal made at the time of project formulation. PERT and CPM are the two network
based project management techniques, which exhibit the flow and sequence of the
activities and events.
Program (Project) Management and Review Technique (PERT) is appropriate for
the projects where time needed to complete different activities are not known.
On the other hand, Critical Path Method or CPM is apt for the projects which are
recurring in nature.
The two scheduling methods, uses common approach for designing the network and
for ascertain its critical path. They are used in the successful completion of a project
and hence used in conjunction with each other. Nevertheless, the truth is that CPM is
different from PERT in a way that the former concentrates on time while the latter
stresses on time-cost trade-off. In the same manner, there are many differences
between PERT and CPM
Basis for Comparison
PERT is a project management
technique, used to manage
uncertain activities of a project.
CPM is a statistical technique
of project management that
activities of a project.
A technique of planning and A method to control cost and
What is it?
control of time.
Focuses on
Appropriate for
Management of
Nature of jobs
Suitable for
Crashing concept
Examples Related CPM AND PERT
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