Give Your Foreman Time to Execute the Job Right
BY John Ball
One of the best ways to ensure you make money on your next project is to give your foreman time to execute the project properly from start to finish.
The foreman for the job needs information about the job, as well as access to the job site, before the job begins. When you equip him with the tools for success, you increase his opportunity for success. Start with the estimate.
Give your foreman the estimate—or the bid—for the job so he can see how it was bid and how much time he has to complete the project. Did you bid by the ton? Did you expect the crew to complete the job in two 8-hour shifts?
Did you account for set-up? By granting the foreman access to the estimate, you give him the best chance to set up the job to be completed right, hopefully without running over the time your estimator figured.
Give your foreman time to go visit the site before the job begins. He needs to plan out how to pave it. He needs to figure where the paver will start for staging the equipment as it arrives. He needs to figure where the first, second, third passes will begin and end for lining out the job and estimating tons for each pass. He will work with the general laborers to mark this information on the job site.
For many crews in the field, the foreman is overwhelmed with work. He can’t get away from Project A to go visit Project B. This is where supervisors and managers can—and should—assist. On the day before the new job, the foreman may be tied to Project A. He is probably anticipating tomorrow’s job with some anxiety. You don’t want the element of surprise to be a part of your operation. Instead, help your foreman with the work load as one project is winding down so he has confidence in the crew to leave them for the block of time necessary to investigate conditions at Project B.