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  • ACM | Kathryn Ineck

BUILDER BASICS: Creating Commercial Construction Schedules

Updated: Mar 19

The ACM Advantage

As a construction management and general contracting firm, ACM is unique: we work with a dedicated labor force who are able to complete a majority of project tasks. This is important because it means that we can accomplish construction without relying on the timelines that subcontractors are beholden to. When we do need outside experts, our team can prepare a project for a subcontractor to come in and finish: our crews have a wealth of knowledge and experience and are more than happy to jump in to assist a subcontractor and move the project along.


Construction Schedule Graphic

Commercial construction project scheduling can look like a daunting task, not just because a good schedule accounts for each task within a construction project but also because there are a lot of moving parts that can interrupt the progress from one task to the next. A late subcontractor, missing materials, or an unaccounted-for inspection requirement can throw a schedule off and affect the overall project completion.

A good construction manager will consider factors like project milestones, material lead times, weather delays, funding disbursements, and subcontractor timelines, as well as allow for contingencies in the event that tasks or phases need to be shuffled.

construction worker carrying lumber

A best-case scenario is one in which the construction manager is part of the design-build team from the very beginning. This allows the construction manager to collaborate with the project owners and the design team to plan for activities that affect the project schedule (and budget!), like:

  • materials selection

  • materials delivery

  • phasing

Often, the tasks associated with a project are obvious. For a new build, the building’s framing cannot be completed until the foundation is in place. Rooves cannot be erected without walls to support them. When the change of seasons looms, a construction manager will ensure the building exterior is completed during fair weather and interior tasks will be saved for winter conditions.

meeting of design professionals

Other times, the tasks are more fluid: in a tenant improvement project—or in the interior portion of a new build—the project can be broken down into phases, and those phases can often be interchangeable.

When putting a schedule together, ACM looks at ways to be more efficient. “More efficient” doesn’t mean running and doing stuff as fast as you can; it’s about finding the best way to accomplish each task.

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