Be ready for success.
Tips for planning a successful facility construction project.
Receiving funding is not enough to ensure the success of any facility construction or expansion project. Given the size and complexity of some of these projects, it almost makes it a foregone conclusion that there will be issues or challenges along the way. With grant awards fast approaching, it is critical to start thinking about project risk mitigation and aligning expectations. Below are a few recommendations and “lessons learned” from our experience developing and providing construction project management services for Health Centers.
Use your internal capacity.
We recommend that you think about establishing an ad hoc “Construction Committee” at the board level to streamline communication with the overall board each month in the project period. This committee would also assist with preparing requests for proposals for design and construction, which helps the board choose the best value proposal for your project.
The exterior aesthetics of a building is only one part of the decisions the health center must make. The owner should understand the conditions of the site and soils well before breaking dirt on the project. Subsurface investigation will allow the owner to uncover unforeseen situations such as unsuitable soil conditions. Knowing this information early will enable the health center to address the issue while staying within the budget instead of a surprise change order months later after you have awarded a construction contract.
Improve the patient experience through smart design.
Research on flexibility and adaptability in healthcare is limited, and research specific to health center design is almost nonexistent. We recommend embracing a clinic layout that is both welcoming and familiar, one that’s unintimidating and alleviates patient anxiety and stress. In our experience, we recommend that you embrace a design that encourages flexibility and adaptability while analyzing the design’s long-term costs and implications. Having the stakeholders involved in the planning process during the design-development phase is critical to the success of the center’s layout and efficiencies when completed.
Begin with the end in mind; it is never too soon to begin planning for the transition.
We recommend that you start thinking about the internal coordination of owner-furnished items such as furniture, fixtures, signage, and equipment. Coordinating this on the “front-end” can eliminate unbudgeted cost changes to your project. Understanding the owner-furnished equipment’s specifications and field requirements can save you thousands of dollars. Delivery of the furniture is critical, and if not managed correctly, can cost you thousands of dollars in unnecessary storage fees.
To schedule a time to discuss the unique challenges facing your health center, click here or email us at info@330Partners.com.