What Is Change Management? Process & Models Explained

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

One thing is certain: change is going to happen in your organization or project. To best plan and respond to change, first, a clear definition of change management must be understood.

What Is Change Management?

The term change management refers to the actions, tools and models implemented to manage different types of change either at the project or organizational level. There are several organizational change management strategies that can be applied to manage work, resources, business processes and budget allocations as well as different types of organizational changes.

At the project level, you’ll need to set up a change management framework that guarantees that all changes to the project plan are properly approved, implemented and tracked so that the project timeline, budget or resources are not affected by any sudden changes made to the initial scope, schedule or budget baseline.

ProjectManager helps you make a change management plan and track it in real time, whether you’re managing project changes or organizational changes. Set up the plan with our robust Gantt charts, which populate the plan on a visual timeline so you can see it all in one place. Add resources, tasks, durations, milestones and task dependencies. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

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ProjectManager’s Gantt charts create a change management plan and track it in real time. Learn more

Change Management Models

Using change management models helps guide teams through necessary transitions at a project or organizational level. It can be difficult to adapt to new processes, but when you create a change management plan, you can obtain benefits for your organization. These change management models can help plan and manage organizational change.

Lewin’s Change Management Model

Kurt Lewin, a German-American psychologist, developed a change management model that breaks down change based on three phases: unfreeze, change and refreeze. The first phase prepares you for the change, then it’s implemented and, finally, that change is solidified.

McKinsey’s 7-S Change Management model

A more involved model than Lewin’s, this involves seven elements. They are the seven S’s, which are strategy, structure, systems, shared values, style, staff and skill. Unlike Lewin’s there is no specific order. They are used to address how each impacts the other in order to identify weaknesses.

Kotter’s Change Management Model

Dr. John P. Kotter is a professor of leadership, emeritus, at the Harvard Business School. He is known as the inventor of an eight-step process for leading change that has become instrumental in change management strategy.

  1. Create urgency
  2. Form a powerful coalition
  3. Create a vision for the change
  4. Communicate the vision
  5. Remove obstacles
  6. Create short-term wins
  7. Build on the change
  8. Anchor the change

This change management theory is an expansion on what is the bedrock of change management. Change management stands on four pillars. They are the determination that there’s a need for change, preparing and planning for that change, implementing that change and, lastly, sustaining the change.

ADKAR Change Management Model

This bottom-up method is focused on the people behind the change. ADKAR is an acronym that stands for awareness, desire, knowledge, ability and reinforcement. These are not in any order, but address the need to change, participate and support the change, know how to make the change, have the skills and behavior necessary for the change and then sustain it.

Bridges Transition Model

With this model, you’re focusing on the emotional reactions to change as it is implemented. Rather than dealing with the change itself, this model looks at how the people respond to ending, losing or letting go of something, the neutral point after the change is done and then opening up to a new beginning.

Kübler-Ross Change Management Framework

Based on the five stages of grief, this method acknowledges the emotional reaction people have to change. Just as the grieving process has five stages, so does the change process. These are denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.

Satir Change Management Model

This model is about measuring the emotional state of employees by tracking performance through these five stages of change: late status quo, resistance, chaos, integration and new status quo. Therefore, this model is about preparing and accepting change, not figuring out what needs change.

PDCA Change Management Model

Also called the Deming cycle, this model, PDCA stands for plan, do, check and act. These four phases help with process improvement by identifying the issue, making changes to address it, monitoring and taking action.

Nudge Theory

As the name implies, this theory is about using subtle, indirect suggestions that are evidenced-based to change employees into making the changes required. For this to be successful you must define the change, take into account the employee’s point of view, offer proof that the change is valid and it’s a choice, listen to feedback, limit options and offer short-term wins to solidify the change.

Change Management Process

Change management can take many forms. From small projects to large organizations, we all must deal with change and there’s no single approach when it comes to it. However, here are some steps you can follow to guide you through the change management process.

1. Define the Change

First, it’s important to define what the change is and general information about it so you and your team know how to proceed. Ask yourself questions about the change, such as whether is it planned or unplanned. Will it have an incremental rollout, or will it need a faster implementation? These questions will help you gather information about the change so that you can create an effective change management plan. Make sure you use change orders to control change in your projects, programs and portfolios.

2. Create a Change Vision

Your change vision is a description of what your organization will look like after a change has been successfully implemented. Similar to a gap analysis, it describes the difference between the current state and the desired future state and the expected benefits for the project or organization.

3. Select a Change Management Model

There are several change management models you can choose from, each with its own pros and cons depending on the specific characteristics of your project or organization.

4. Create a Change Management Plan

A change management plan explains how the change will be managed, either at the project or organizational level. It describes what are the change management roles and responsibilities, who is on the change control board, how will the change request process work, and any other details that are related to change management.

5. Assemble a Change Management Team

Your change management plan has all the strategies, guidelines and procedures that you will use to manage change. Now you’ll need a team to execute them. Assemble a cross-functional team, so that you have different perspectives to analyze change.

6. Implement & Track the Changes

The work isn’t done once you’ve implemented a change in your project or organization. It’s important to follow up and track the impact of your changes using data and key performance indicators (KPIs).

Change Management Templates

Here are some free templates that can help you with change management at the project level. We also have dozens of project management templates to help you with planning, scheduling and tracking.

Change Request Template

This free template is ideal to streamline your change request approval process. It can be easily customized and shared with your team.

Change Order Template

Change orders are a fundamental project change management document. This free template is ideal to get you started.

Change Log Template

This change log template is ideal to keep track of every change that takes place during your project life cycle.

ProjectManager Helps with Change Management

Once you have defined your process, you need to decide on what tools you want to use to manage that change control process. Many teams turn to simple Excel templates to list change requests and track progress. Typically there are several data points you want to track when you are managing a change control process:

  • Description of change request
  • Who requested it
  • Priority of item
  • Assignee in charge of implementing change
  • Date change was implemented
  • Notes

That’s a simple way to track the full process. Some project management software tools, however, help you manage change as a part of your project management. For example, in ProjectManager, you can track changes, along with risks and issues, right in the software.

ProjectManager's risk task cardProjectManager's risk task card

The benefit of incorporating change management into your PM tool is:

  • Track changes with the project
  • Attach change requests to specific tasks
  • Get email alerts when changes are updated
  • Track changes on a dashboard.

When changes are connected to particular projects, or even when you make organizational changes its own project, it can help to use tools that keep your process moving forward through automation and tracking capabilities. Whatever tool you use, be sure to remember that change must be led. While change happens, managing change takes leadership.

Change happens, but without the right tools to manage that change, it’s the change and not you who is directing the project. To have a strong change management process, you must have an able change management tool. ProjectManager is online project management software that gives you real-time data so you can identify change as it’s happening. Then you have the features you and your team require to resolve those changes. Get started with ProjectManager for free and manage change by taking this free 30-day trial.

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Qualities of a Leader: Top 20 Leadership Traits

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

Leadership qualities can be difficult to label because leadership itself is so present in our lives that traits can be hard to identify and define. Leadership can take many forms, from historical figures to project managers and business managers. They all lead their teams to successful ends by providing them with the direction, confidence, tools and resources that they need. But what are the qualities of a leader?

Here’s where things get tricky. Ask a dozen people what leadership looks like to them and you’ll likely get a dozen different answers. To help define the elusive quality of leadership, we’ve gone through those core values and found 20 leadership traits that have been validated by proven business leaders and other experts.

You’ll need the right tools to better apply your leadership qualities in the workplace. ProjectManager is project management software that allows leaders to create plans, manage resources and keep track of time, tasks and budgets in real time. Get started for free.

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1. Communication Skills

Leaders must have excellent communication skills. While communication skills are considered by many as a soft skill that you’re born with, that’s not completely true. You can improve your verbal and non-verbal communication skills through self-improvement techniques or educational programs.

Communication skills are also tightly related to other leadership qualities that we’ll explore later such as emotional intelligence, self-confidence, self-esteem and empathy for others.

2. Problem-Solving Skills

Leaders have the responsibility of guiding teams through challenges to reach objectives. To do so, leaders must be capable individuals who excel at problem-solving. Problem-solving involves being able to diagnose the causes of a problem, create strategies to solve it, choose the best course of action and implement solutions.

3. Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence can be simply defined as the ability to manage one’s emotions. It sounds simple, but perceiving, understanding and controlling our own feelings can be challenging, especially under the stressful conditions leaders face. Emotional intelligence and conflict management are critical leadership qualities because they allow you to promote team cohesion and provide team members with a collaborative, friendly environment.

4. Self Esteem

Self-esteem is tightly closed to emotional intelligence. If we don’t have self-esteem, it becomes hard to control our emotions and have empathy for others. Therefore, a good leader must strive to build self-esteem as this helps with other important leadership qualities such as self-confidence and communication skills.

5. Empathy

Empathy is the ability to put yourself in the position of other people and see the world through their lenses. This is an important quality of a leader because as one, you’ll always be around people, such as the team members you work with or the stakeholders who are impacted by your projects.

6. Positive Attitude

Some leadership traits can be taught and others learned from experience. Then there are those that are an X factor and they’re not so easily defined. One of these is a positive attitude. A positive attitude is inspirational, another X factor, and when someone has it they’re more likely to get people behind them to do anything and everything to enact their vision.

7. Accountability

It’s impossible to think about any leader without this leadership trait. Accountability is simply the willingness of accepting responsibility for our actions. An accountable leader isn’t only aware of his actions and decisions but is also responsible for the success or failure of his or her team. That doesn’t mean accountable leaders won’t make mistakes or fail, but they should always be transparent with their team and stakeholders.

8. Adaptability

Adaptability helps leaders better guide their teams through crises or constantly changing environments. Leaders should be able to quickly come up with strategies and create action plans and contingency measures for any situation that involves risk or uncertainty. If you’re looking to kickstart your adaptability, download our free action plan template for Excel below.

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Action Plan Template

Use this free Action Plan Template for Excel to manage your projects better.

9. Critical Thinking

Critical thinking helps leaders make decisions based on data, physical evidence, observations or other tangible information rather than arbitrary decisions. A good leader uses critical thinking skills to gather project management information, analyze it and then use it as input for decision-making.

10. Personal Development

Personal development, as a leadership trait, is the willingness to improve your skills or personal traits where you need there’s room for improvement. As with other qualities of a leader in this list, personal development can positively impact other traits such as your self-esteem and self-confidence.

11. Risk Taking

Leaders aren’t big risk-takers, they should act as risk managers instead. This means you should be capable of identifying potential risks that could affect your project, measuring the likelihood of those risks and creating risk management strategies to control them if they were to happen.

With that said, leaders shouldn’t always avoid risk. Always be open to new ideas and be able to assess risk and estimate potential benefits.

12. Team Building

A myth about leadership is that it comes from one person as if they’re somehow touched by divine providence. That’s just not true. Ask any successful leader and they’ll tell you that they surround themselves with a multitude of perspectives to help steer their decision-making.

This isn’t a new idea. Diogenes of Sinope lived 400 years before the birth of Christ, and this Greek philosopher noted that “wise leaders generally have wise counselors because it takes a wise person themselves to distinguish them.” Beware the leader who acts without counsel, for they’ll soon be alone in the wilderness.

13. Curiosity and Creativity

Anyone can become a leader, but according to a meta-analysis of leadership published in the Harvard Business Review, those who are “more adjusted, sociable, ambitious and curious are much more likely to become leaders.” A well-adjusted, social and ambitious individual will rise to a leadership position.

Curious people seek new solutions to old problems. They’re constantly trying new things and new ideas, and even when they find the answer to one problem, they’re never complacent. Great leaders are tireless in their pursuit of better ways to do things, which means they’re keeping their organization innovative and competitive. For more motivation, read our 25 most inspiring leadership quotes.

14. Constructive Criticism

It’s become cliché that surrounding yourself with yes-men is going to “yes” you to ruin. A leader doesn’t want validation. Constructive criticism is valuable, even if you disagree. That’s because it provides perspective and shows you a problem from a vantage point you might have ignored or overlooked.

The most famous example of this leadership trait is Abraham Lincoln, who assembled a Cabinet whose members had different points of view than the president, sometimes radically so. In her Pulitzer Prize-winning biography, Team of Rivals, Doris Kearns Goodwin notes that Lincoln wanted to hear strong voices of dissent, encouraged without fear of retaliation. But the final decision, after hearing strong arguments for and against, sat solely with Lincoln.

15. Active Listening

Leadership is all about communicating. You must communicate your vision. Explain how you’re planning to implement it so you can inspire those on your team and report to those to whom you’re responsible. All of these are essential communication skills for effective leaders.

But if you’re not listening, then you’re just barking orders, and that’s a pathway to failure. Active listening is a leadership trait that was first developed by Carl Rogers and Richard Farson in the 1980s. They argue that listening isn’t a passive activity, but rather listening can change attitudes. Active listening helps people become less defensive and authoritarian, making them more democratic, emotionally mature and open to experience. All of which help a leader rally the troops.

16. Self Confidence

According to a study conducted at the University of Texas at San Antonio in 2016, “the key to a successful, creative leader is confidence.” Leadership isn’t only about motivating people, but also about coming up with ideas. An abusive leader creates only stress. Confidence, on the other hand, doesn’t need to bolster itself by humiliating others. Confidence leads by creating a collaborative and creative environment.

Naturally, being overly confident is no confidence at all. That’s arrogance, and it falls squarely into the abusive leadership camp and should be avoided. But staying genuinely positive and confident is contagious and gives those working for the leader the same optimistic attitudes that lead to more creative engagement.

17. Servant Leadership

It sounds like an oxymoron, but servant leadership is an effective managerial style. There’s a long history of servant leaders, such as Harriet Tubman, Martin Luther King, Jr. and Jane Goodall. A servant leader may be at the top of the power pyramid, but they share that power by putting the needs of others ahead of their own.

In terms of business, this approach creates connections among employees and strengthens relationships, which leads to increased productivity. It gives teams more autonomy, results in buy-in to the project and gives teams the confidence and freedom to work successfully. Servant leaders make sure their staff has the resources they need to work hard while avoiding administrative and political hurdles.

18. Integrity

More and more people believe that integrity is the true hallmark of a great leader, over competitiveness or other assumed leadership traits. According to a poll conducted in 2016 by Robert Half Management Resources, three-fourths of participants, including workers and management, chose integrity as a top attribute of corporate leaders.

Having integrity sets the right example from the top down, but it also means being transparent with employees and advocating for your team. Integrity is a business asset, too, in that an ethical managerial style attracts investors, customers and talent. Having a trustworthy leader benefits the organization inside and out.

19. Decision Making

At its core, leadership is about making decisions. If you don’t want there to be something rotten in your company, you must have a leader who can pull the trigger when the time is right.

Leadership guru Tony Robbins notes that a leader is the one who has to make those difficult decisions. “The ability to be decisive can mean the difference between getting through tough times and folding under pressure,” he writes. Therefore, a leader can’t be a people-pleaser. Some of the decisions won’t be well-received by everyone, but good judgment ensures that they’re for the best. That’s one cornerstone for a respected leader.

20. Improvisation

Instincts don’t always provide a strong foundation for great leadership, but sometimes, it’s foolish to ignore them. As a leader, there are times when your intuition is needed to make quick decisions and there’s some improvisation that needs to take place.

If you have the experience and the knowledge, then much of your leadership is going to be like muscle memory. That is, you’ll be able to react faster than you can think. That doesn’t mean the thinking is bad, but it’s like what Eleanor Roosevelt said, “Do what you feel in your heart to be right, for you’ll be criticized anyway.”

ProjectManager Is Ideal for Team Leaders

You can be the greatest leader in the world but if you don’t have the right tools then you can’t properly manage your team and project. ProjectManager is award-winning project management software that gives leaders the features they need to plan, manage and track their projects in real time. Not all leaders are the same, which is why we have multiple project views.

Keep Track of Your Team

With ProjectManager, you can zoom into your team members’ progress with multiple project management tools such as workload charts, timesheets and reports so you can assign tasks while keeping track of resource utilization and costs. Our home view automatically populates with individual and team data to make it easy for leaders to see where you are in your project.

Manage Projects, Programs and Portfolios

From robust Gantt charts to task lists, calendars and the visual workflow of our kanban boards, every type of leader can be at their best. Foster collaboration, balance workloads and stay productive. Our tools are great for leaders overseeing teams or projects of any size including programs or large portfolios.

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Great leaders have great tools to better implement their plans. The online project management software ProjectManager is what a leader wants in order to monitor and report on progress with its real-time dashboard, online Gantt chart and collaborative platform. Try it for yourself and see it by taking this free 30-day trial.

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How to Choose a Project Name: Tips & 10 Project Code Names

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

Most organizations use project names as they’re a quick way to remember projects and programs. Some project managers think those names should describe a project’s purpose or its main goals, while others simply choose cool or catchy project names to lighten up the mood in the organization.

While it can be challenging, creating project code names is a meaningful task that you and your team will value. Then, you’ll need project management software like ProjectManager to get the job done. ProjectManager lets you choose between a wide variety of project management tools such as Gantt charts, dashboards, timesheets, calendars, reports and much more. Get started for free today.

ProjectManager’s dashboards are ideal for managing projects, programs and portfolios. Learn more

How Do You Create a Project Name?

There are no right or wrong answers when creating a project name and no method either, which makes it difficult for some people. Today, there’s a lot of advice on how to name projects and even project code name generators online that are fun to use when starting a project. But we thought it’d be most instructive to look at key tips to create a project name, along with the best project code names of all time.

5 Tips to Create Project Names

A project name captures its essence and can create a sense of ownership in the team. However, creating a project name is much harder than it sounds. Here are some tips to spark your creativity.

1. Use a Project Name Generator

You might be out of ideas right when choosing a project name. In fact, most of us do. Luckily, there are some AI-based project code name generators that’ll make things easier. They’re capable of providing dozens of project names you can skim through. While these project name generators might not be perfect, they’re definitively a source of inspiration.

2. Brainstorm With Your Project Team

As always, you should welcome your team members’ ideas when naming your projects. Just like you, they’re involved in the project and can help you come up with great project name ideas that you might have missed.

3. Align Your Project Name With Your Organizational Culture

Coming up with a project name goes beyond choosing a cool or catchy name. It’s also important to factor in aspects of your organizational culture such as your brand tone, business name or company values. As a general rule, you don’t want to choose a project code name that goes against any of those.

4. Do a Trademark Check

Many projects involve the development of a final product. In those cases, you must be cautious about not using any registered trademark in order to avoid any negative consequences for your project. If you’re located in the United States, you can do a trademark search by using the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) database. There are similar regulatory entities around the world.

5. Use a Theme for Your Project Names

In large organizations, most of the time your project will be part of a program or project portfolio. It’s important to consider that there should be a logical connection between project names. You could do this by using project names that follow a theme. A typical example of this is to name your projects after Greek mythology gods such as Zeus, Poseidon or Ares.

Now, let’s review 10 of the most famous project code names of all time.

10 Project Name Ideas from History

The military first started creating project code names for strategic reasons. Churchill himself, it was said, named the Normandy invasion and had his own code of sorts for how operations were to be named. Projects with a higher risk of casualty “ought not to be described by code words which imply a boastful or overconfident sentiment,” he penned. He also recommended avoiding names of “frivolous” characters and living people.

Project code names and project names then started expanding across industries, languages and continents and are now a common practice for most organizations. Here are some of the best project names from history.

1. Titan

Apple is mum, but Insiders report that the company is working on a car called “Titan,” slated to be road-ready in 2019. With a name that gigantic, buzz is already building about the features that may or may not rival Google’s self-driving cars.

2. Project Hanks

When Verizon Communications was looking to take over AOL, they needed to keep the deal secret and came up with a code name. According to the TelegraphProject Hanks is the name they chose, which may not make sense until you remember that Tom Hanks starred in the movie You’ve Got Mail (1998), a romantic comedy about a relationship built on AOL’s famous mail notification.

3. Kodiak

Unlike some other companies that have a codename and then change it to something else when it comes to market, in 2000, Apple developed its first version of Mac OS X with the codename Kodiak. It’s since followed that theme with updates with other powerful creatures of the wild, such as Puma, Jaguar, Panther, Leopard, Snow Leopard and Lion.

4. Code Talkers

This was the project name for the secret WWII program to recruit Cherokee, Creek, Choctow and other tribal members to transmit coded messages in Native American languages. It was also popularized in the Nicholas Cage classic of cinema, Windtalkers.

5. Project Blue Book

If you don’t already know, then you probably don’t have the clearance. But for the sake of disclosure, Project Blue Book was the code name for the US Air Force investigations into UFO sightings. But you didn’t hear that from us.

6. X Lab

They may have been known earlier for their unofficial slogan “Don’t be evil,” but that doesn’t mean Google doesn’t have a secret lair. At the company’s secret “X” Lab, projects like the Self-Driving Car and Google Glass are built under the cloak and veil of secrecy deserved by its uber-mysterious name.

7. Project 404

The code name for a covert US Air Force mission to Laos during the Vietnam War was to supply line crew technicians. Today, it’s the code name for a webpage that can no longer be found. Coincidence?

8. Manhattan Project

The super-secret project to develop an atomic bomb during World War II was a beehive of activity for some of the smartest minds at the time, but all they could come up with in terms of a name for their work was “Manhattan” because they began the research in a simple office building located in Manhattan, New York. They eventually moved to more secure environs out of the area, but the classy name remained.

9. Durango

When Microsoft was looking to build upon its wildly popular Xbox 360 gaming console, Durango was its name. But like all Microsoft projects, the project name was far from the final product name. In this case, they thought long and hard and hired the best people to release Xbox One.

10. Apollo

One of the most famous projects of the last century, the Apollo program, was designed to land humans on the moon and bring them back alive. It’s the kind of story more told in myth, which is maybe why NASA (an acronym for National Aeronautics and Space Administration) went back to the Greeks. Apollo is associated with the Greek verb meaning to destroy. That may sound counterintuitive, but in Greek mythology Apollo, son of Zeus and Leto, twin of Artemis, was the god of prophecy, medicine, music, art, law, beauty and wisdom.

ProjectManager Turns Project Names Into Successful Project Plans

Once you’ve come up with a great codename, you need to start the project. The codenames of the projects we collected above are memorable because they were successful, and every great project begins with a plan. ProjectManager, our award-winning project management software, simplifies that process with online Gantt charts that turn your tasks into timelines for easy scoping. Keep projects on schedule and under budget with this visual tool.

Gantt chart in ProjectManagerGantt chart in ProjectManager

Team Collaboration for Better Execution

The codename for a project is cool, but your team is your most valuable resource. ProjectManager frees them to be more productive. They can collaborate with each other at the task level, adding relevant files and images. They can even tag people and send out email alerts to keep everyone in the loop. Give your teams the tools they need to get the work done.

Kanban board in ProjectManagerKanban board in ProjectManager

ProjectManager has all that and more. Our software enables you and your team to deliver any kind of project in any kind of industry. Take a look at what we can offer your next project, then come up with a winning codename. Try ProjectManager for 30 days with this free trial. 

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What Is A Construction Change Order? Process & Tips

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

Construction projects are complicated. It’s no surprise that there are changes that impact the work. In order for those surprises to impact the construction plan as minimally as possible, the industry uses something called a construction change order.

All projects have change orders, but what is a construction change order and when should you use it? We’ll answer those questions as well as outline the process when managing construction change orders. To further help, there is a change order template included and, of course, how construction project management software goes even further.

What Is a Construction Change Order?

The construction change order is simply an amendment to the contract between the construction company and its client. It’s a document that defines a change in the scope of work. This is fully documented and often will add to the agreed-upon contract price, project timeline or both.

However, construction change orders aren’t simply demanded but requested. Both the construction contractor and the owner must both agree on the terms of the construction change order before it’s implemented into the project.

There are many reasons for a construction change order. The owner might ask for a wall, door or window to be placed somewhere other than where it had been designed in the layout in order to work better with another design element. That’s an additive change order. Other construction change orders delete rather than add, which are called deductive change orders. These can reduce the price of the contract.

Whatever the reason for the construction change order, the contractor has to implement it without as little disruption to the project plan as possible. ProjectManager is online construction project management software that helps you track change orders in real time. Use our kanban board project view to add the construction change order and have a visual tool to track its workflow as it moves from to do, doing and done. You can attach documents and images, comment, add tags, priority and much more. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

ProjectManager's kanban boardProjectManager's kanban board
ProjectManager’s kanban boards track construction change orders in real time. Learn more

When Should You Use a Construction Change Order?

Construction change orders can occur throughout the execution of the project plan. More construction projects than not will have at least one over the course of the project’s life cycle. Therefore, it’s important that construction contractors are aware of this and plan accordingly.

Projects will use a construction change order for many reasons, some of which we’ve noted above. Other reasons include errors in design, inadequate scope, weather making construction impossible and inaccurate estimates of the project’s timeline. All of these, and many more, will have contractors using construction change orders.

Anyone who manages a construction project should be ready for a change order. The more you understand what can cause these changes to the project’s scope and the better you plan for them, the faster and less impactful the changes can take place.

Construction Change Order Management Process

If nothing is constant other than change, then a process needs to be in place in order to manage the construction change orders that occur over the course of the project. The following are the basic steps that need to be taken when managing the construction change order process. Before you commit to a process, though, make sure that the clients and subcontractors have signed on to it.

Begin With the Contract

Since a construction change order is just an addition to the contract between the construction contractor and their client or owner, the contract is the starting point for all change orders that’ll impact the project’s scope of work. Before the contract is signed, be sure to read it carefully. In this case, you want to pay close attention to any clauses that relate to change orders, such as those that regard the timeframe, documentation and who is authorized to approve the change.

Review the Project Plan

The next step is to look over the construction plan and specifications. Carefully review your construction documents to see if there are any errors, omissions or ambiguities in the scope that the owner and architect need to correct before construction begins. Catching these issues in the plan and specifications will prevent costly and timely construction change orders during the execution of the plan.

Respond Quickly to Change Orders

Whether the contractor or owner requests a construction change order, it should be expedited sooner than later. Delays will likely only add to the expense of time spent responding to the change order. Don’t wait until the last minute as tempting as it might be to put the change order on the back burner. It’s critical to quickly get the change in writing and make adjustments to the schedule and costs. Otherwise, you’ll have a backlog of construction change orders that could derail the project or worse.

Meet With All Involved Parties

Not only must the contractor and owner meet to discuss the change before it’s documented and come to an agreement about the cost and impact on the schedule, but they should also stay in communication throughout the process. This includes understanding the reason for the change order and how to manage it. Without an agreement, the change will be more disruptive. Define the new scope of work with the owner or their authorized agent. Don’t neglect the subcontractors who will have to make adjustments to their schedules. Let them know how the change will impact their work and define workflows clearly. Then keep everyone updated as the construction work order is executed.

Further Negotiations

Negotiations are the final phase of the construction change order process before you begin working. All parties might not come to an agreement immediately. There can be disagreements on the impact on the project’s scope of work and issues related to cost and timeline. First, get the owner to agree on the cost of the change, whether pricing, time or materials, though it can be negotiated as a lump sum, too. Sometimes this is already defined in the contract, which makes the process easier. This step is a push and pull between the contractor and the owner that should result in a decision with which all are comfortable.

Don’t Neglect Documentation

Clearly documenting the construction change order process helps avoid unnecessary disputes and keeps the work moving forward without costly delays. Every step of the process should be documented and signed off on. Keep written records of all communications between contractor, owner and subcontractors. Once everyone is in the agreement, have them sign off to make sure they know the cost and impact on the schedule. Even during the execution of the change order, it’s crucial to document the work and share those documents to keep everyone updated.

What Should a Construction Change Order Include?

A construction change order needs to capture the pertinent information about the change. In order to do that there are a number of areas that are essential. Though individual construction change orders can differ, they all should have the following details included.

  • Interoffice information: The name of the construction project will make it easier to find, especially if you’re working on multiple projects at once. Include the order number to differentiate this order from other construction change orders in the project. Note if the change is internal or external and add the date of the change order.
  • Define the change: Note the type of change order. There are four construction change orders: time and material (cost cannot be established), lump sum (quantifiable work scope), zero cost (doesn’t change contracted price) and unitary cost (based on unitary cost schedule values). Then explain the reason for the change and if there’s an opportunity associated with it.
  • Describe the change: Write a detailed description of what’s being requested so everyone knows the work that must be done to close the construction change order. Include the materials and labor and estimate the duration of the work. Pricing should also be forecasted here.
  • Sign and date change order: The last step is for all parties involved to sign off on the construction change order and add a date to their signature. This ensures that everyone is aware of what was agreed on and will uphold their end of the contract.

Change Order Template

Standardizing the construction change order process creates consistency and means you don’t have to waste time creating new documents each time a change is introduced into the project. One way to do this is by using a template. ProjectManager has dozens of free project management templates for Excel and Word that are available to download from our site.

Our free change order form template for Excel can be used for construction change orders or any industry that has change orders. Use this free project management template whenever you have to capture change, define the change and make sure everyone agrees on the work that will be done.

ProjectManager's change order templateProjectManager's change order template
ProjectManager’s free change order template for Excel.

ProjectManager Helps You Manage Construction Change Orders

Our free change order template is a great tool to get everyone on the same page, but then you have to do the work. That’s where construction project management comes in. You’ve already seen how ProjectManager’s online software has kanban boards to track the change order in real time. That’s just one of the multiple project views in our tool. Subcontractors can use the task list if they prefer. All data is updated instantly and populates all project views so no matter which view you’re using you’re seeing more current information.

Manage Your Team’s Workload

Construction change orders can impact your cost and schedule. We have resource management features that help you mitigate the impact on your project. Once you’ve onboarded the team and subcontractors, their availability is in the system, making it easy to assign them tasks. Then look over at the workload chart, which is color-coded so you can see who is allocated too many or too few tasks. You can then assign them right from the chart and balance everyone’s workload to keep them productive and not over-allocate anyone and ding morale.

ProjectManager's workload chartProjectManager's workload chart
Get a High-Level View of Your Progress

Your resources are not the only metric that you need to track. Our software has a built-in dashboard that requires no time-consuming configuration as with other lightweight tools. It’s ready to go when you are, capturing live data and displaying it in easy-to-read graphs and charts. You can keep track of costs, time and much more, all in real time. When you want to get more detail use the customizable reports for timesheets, status and other project metrics. They can be easily shared to keep the client, owner or stakeholders updated.

ProjectManager's dashboardProjectManager's dashboard

There are more features that help you manage construction change orders, such as secure timesheets that not only streamline the payroll process but show you how many hours each team member has spent on their tasks. From Gantt charts to schedule and even portfolio management features to manage more than one project, our software gives you the tools you need to make project changes and stay on schedule.

Related Construction Content

ProjectManager isn’t only great construction project management software, but it’s also an online hub for everything project management. We publish weekly blogs, feature tutorial videos, guides and, of course, free templates. If you’re looking for more content on construction project management, you’ve come to the right place. Follow these links to read about everything from making a construction schedule to a roundup of the best construction scheduling software.

ProjectManager is award-winning software that empowers teams to plan, manage and track projects in real time. Our collaborative platform connects everyone from the office to the work site. They can share files, comment and work more productively together. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

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15 Free Word & Excel Templates for Business

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

Businesses need all the help they can get. These free Word and Excel templates for business will give you an upper hand over the competition. These 15 free Word and Excel templates for business help with everything from cost-benefit analysis to timesheets.

Templates are a great way to work consistently and not have to reinvent the wheel each time you need to do repetitive tasks. ProjectManager is more than great project management software, it’s a depository of dozens of free Word and Excel templates for business that you can download right now.

1. SWOT Analysis

Businesses need to make strategic plans if they want to remain competitive and profitable. Our free SWOT analysis template for Word is a method that can be used to evaluate your business environment. SWOT stands for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats, which can then be defined within and outside of your organization.

ProjectManager's free SWOT analysis templateProjectManager's free SWOT analysis template

The free business template is set up in four quadrants. One for strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Vertically, up the left-hand side of the template are two distinctions: one for external and the other for internal. Then on top there are also two categories: one for positive and another for negative. As you do your research, place what you find in the appropriate square. From this visual tool, you can make a viable strategic plan for your business.

2. Timesheet Template

It’s said that your employees are your most valuable resource. So, why would you want to give them cumbersome timesheets? Using our free timesheet template for Excel is a simple and effective tool for keeping track of the time your employees spend on their work. It’s good for them and it’s good for managers to track time spent on tasks.

Of course, a template is not secure. ProjectManager is cloud-based project management software that delivers real-time data and secure timesheets. Our timesheets make it easy to track the amount of time your employee is spending on their tasks as well as costs and progress. Use them to not only streamline payroll but control your labor costs. Even better, our timesheets work seamlessly with task management, reporting features and more to boost productivity and give managers greater visibility into their employees’ work. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

Timesheet view in ProjectManagerTimesheet view in ProjectManager
ProjectManager’s timesheets track progress in real time. Learn more.

3. Project Budget Template

One of the most important aspects of any business is its bottom line. If you can’t make a profit, you can’t stay in business. Budgets are estimates of the costs that you’ll spend over a period of time. They need to be accurate, which is where our free project budget template for Excel comes in. It is certainly one of the more important free Excel templates for business.

ProjectManager's free project budget templateProjectManager's free project budget template

Making an accurate forecast for a budget is hard. There are many uncertainties. But you can use our free Excel template for business to capture labor costs, consultant fees, raw materials, software licenses, travel expenses and even those costs that are recurring, such as telephone charges, office space and equipment, general administration and company insurance. Be sure to use our free project budget template before you embark on any business endeavor.

4. RACI Matrix Template

There are multiple stakeholders in every business. From executives to employees and customers, everyone has some vested interest in the business. Being able to identify those roles and responsibilities as well as how they relate to the overall business and its communications is what our free RACI matrix template for Excel helps you determine.

ProjectManager's free RACI matrix templateProjectManager's free RACI matrix template

RACI is another acronym, this one stands for responsible, accountable, consulted and informed. The value of this free Excel template for business is that it lists everyone in the business on the left-hand column and then the top row identifies them by title. Then you can add the corresponding initial (R, A, C or I) that allows you to understand their place in the business and will help everyone know as well.

5. Cost-Benefit Analysis

A free Excel template for business that no enterprise should be without is our free cost-benefit analysis template for Excel. When you’re exploring business opportunities you need to make sure that they’re worth the time, effort and especially cost. This free template will allow you to test the waters so you know if you will swim or sink if you take on the project.

ProjectManager's free cost-benefit analysis templateProjectManager's free cost-benefit analysis template

A cost-benefit analysis is used by businesses to look at what they expect to pay for a project against what benefits or opportunities it will provide them. In short, will they make money or gain some advantage? Is it worth it? That answer can save a company a lot of frustration down the line or put them in a position to reap the rewards of its endeavor. Either way, it’s a free template that no business can do without.

6. Meeting Minutes Template

One thing that business people seem to agree about is that there are too many meetings. However, meetings are essential for communication, brainstorming and more. That doesn’t mean they don’t meander, but with an agenda, they can stay on point. With our free meeting minutes template for Word, you can also capture the important takeaways.

ProjectManager's free meeting minutes templateProjectManager's free meeting minutes template

Using our free template for business allows you to collect all the necessary information in a format that is easy to read and, therefore, more likely retained by those who are in attendance. Minutes also help with documentation and save time during the meeting. That’s because everything is laid out, from the agenda to action items and even scheduling the next meeting.

7. Inventory Template

Businesses run lean and mean if they want to stay in business. If your business has inventory then knowing exactly what you have and what you need is key to success. If you have our free inventory template for Excel then you’ll always have the materials you need on hand and never have costly delays in production to restock your inventory.

ProjectManager's free inventory templateProjectManager's free inventory template

The free inventory template records the level of stock you’re warehousing as well as tracking turnover. It’s all there on one document, which makes it easy for managers to know what they have and when they have to order more. Not only manufacturers, but retailers can use the free Excel template for business to see what is and isn’t selling.

8. Gap Analysis Template

Businesses don’t have the luxury of resting on their laurels. Stagnation leads to death. But wanting to improve and improving are two different things. That’s why our free gap analysis template for Excel is so critical for any business that wants to stay competitive. It helps businesses set long-term goals and stay innovative.

ProjectManager's free gap analysis templateProjectManager's free gap analysis template

This free Excel template for business is a chart that collects the data you need to create an action plan that will move a business from where it currently stands in the marketplace to where it wants to be in the future. It does this by focusing on areas of improvement, using a gap percentage to show how far you have to go, including a timeline and resource management to get you there.

9. Project Prioritization Matrix Template

The insight to know which project needs your attention if you’re managing a portfolio or program is key to managing your precious resources wisely to get the best return on your investment. Your business has a long-term strategy and using our free project prioritization matrix template for Excel helps you determine which projects are aligned with that strategy objectively and need attention immediately.

ProjectManager's free project prioritization templateProjectManager's free project prioritization template

It does this with what’s commonly referred to as an Eisenhower matrix. It’s a chart broken up into four quadrants: must be done immediately, scheduled for the near future, delegated and delete or move. Across the top of the chart are two columns, one for do now and the other for doing later. On the left-hand side are two rows: crucial and not crucial. By placing your projects in one of these quadrants you can make more insightful decisions as to where to place your business efforts.

10. Organizational Chart Template

As businesses grow, they can become like a freighter, too big to turn swiftly. Our free organizational chart template for Excel won’t necessarily make your business more nimble, but it’ll help you stay competitive and improve departmental communication. Knowing who reports to who and who has authority to do what in a business will help you respond quickly to market forces and that makes this free Excel template for business so valuable.

ProjectManager's free organizational chart templateProjectManager's free organizational chart template

A visual chart that shows the internal structure of a business, this hierarchical document breakdown the chain of command from top to bottom. It lists everyone’s name and position and shows where they stand in the organization of the business. Besides showing the relationships of the employees in a business it also helps to analyze the needs of a workforce, which makes it easier to know when you have to hire staff or streamline to create greater efficiency.

11. Weekly Work Schedule Template

How you handle your human resources is instrumental to the success of your business. Organizing the work schedules of your employees keeps the company productive. Manage workflow with our free weekly work schedule template for Excel. This free Excel template for business lists all your employees, where and when they work as well as their responsibilities over a period of a week.

ProjectManager's weekly work scheduleProjectManager's weekly work schedule

This not only helps with productivity but ensures that you are efficiently balancing your workforce. It’s a way to organize work and keep everyone working at capacity without over-allocating them. This helps to reduce the cost of your resources while keeping to deadlines. There’s also the fact that you can prioritize the work that must be done over the week. It also keeps the work-life balance that retains employees and lifts morale.

12. Action Plan Template

Businesses have strategies, but they’re just ideas on paper until they’re executed. An action plan turns that strategy into actionable steps that will ideally lead to the outcome you’ve planned to achieve. To outline those steps use our free action plan template for Excel. It will visualize the steps necessary to meet your business objectives and goals.

ProjectManager's free action plan templateProjectManager's free action plan template

This action plan is made up of tasks and the free Excel template for business even breaks these tasks into subtasks, which are action items. It also notes the team, time and resources that will be required to complete the work. This includes a timeline to organize those tasks, prioritize them and assemble the team who will execute the work.

13. Request for Quote Template

Businesses can’t do everything themselves. They contract out work often but even more, they build relationships with suppliers who provide them with the materials they require to get their work done. Getting the supplies they need, when they need them is done through a request for quote (RFQ) process. To secure the procurements you need for your business, use our free request for quote template for Word.

ProjectManager's free request for quote templateProjectManager's free request for quote template

The RFQ is often used with the request for proposal, the latter being how contracts between businesses and suppliers are defined. This free template is key to negotiating the price, amount and delivery of those supplies necessary for your work. Through a RFQ, both sides can come to an equitable agreement. This free template is ideal for keeping your supply costs down.

14. Marketing Calendar Template

If your business is marketing a product or service that’s a whole other job you have to do on top of everything else. Planning a marketing campaign involves deadlines, coordinating resources and much more. Using our free marketing calendar template for Excel shows you the campaign and activities on a monthly, quarterly or yearly basis to help you stay on track.

Free marketing calendar template from ProjectManagerFree marketing calendar template from ProjectManager

This customizable free Excel template for business will allow you to visualize your marketing plan over a specific period of time. You can organize your schedule, the many tasks that are involved and their duration. There’s a place to describe the work and when it’s due as well as the people who are involved in doing that work. You can even set marketing goals to measure the success of your campaign.

15. Change Log Template

There isn’t a business that has not had to change something in order to remain solvent. But changes are disruptive and if you’re not managing them they can end up causing damage or worse to your business. Our free change log template for Excel captures those changes and tracks them throughout their life cycle until they have been resolved.

ProjectManager's free change log templateProjectManager's free change log template

This provides a business with greater visibility. You identify the change and assign someone in the business to be responsible for addressing it. That creates accountability and managers can be certain that the change, whatever it might be, is taken care of. Not all changes are created equally, either. You can prioritize the change on this free Excel business template and better manage the time and cost related to the change.

ProjectManager Helps With Business Planning

All of these free Word and Excel templates for business are helpful, but they can only take you so far. They are, after all, static documents. You have to manually update them and, if they’re shared, it can be difficult to impossible to know which version has the most current data. ProjectManager is cloud-based software that empowers businesses to work more productively and streamline their processes for greater efficiency. Plus, everyone is connected, any time and anywhere, and they’re working off of real-time data to make more impactful decisions.

Plan Business Strategy With Robust Gantt Charts

Businesses need to plan ahead, whether to implement their strategies and meet objectives and goals or to execute projects. That involves scheduling costs, resources and time. Our robust Gantt charts do all that and more. They link all four types of dependencies to help you avoid delays. You can also create milestones and set a baseline to track your planned effort against your actual effort in real time to keep your strategic plans on track.

ProjectManager's Gantt chartProjectManager's Gantt chart
Track Projects With Real-Time Dashboards

Once you’ve set a baseline, you can track your progress and performance across our software in real time. Toggle over to the live dashboard where colorful graphs and charts make it easy to see metrics, such as time, cost and more. Unlike lightweight tools, there’s no configuration required. It’s ready when you are to show a high-level view of the work you and your employees are doing.

dashboard showing project metrics in real-timedashboard showing project metrics in real-time

That’s just a sampling of the features we have. There are also resource management tools that can help you balance your employees’ workload to make them more productive. Risk management features allow you to track those changes and make sure they don’t impact your schedule or budget. All this on a collaborative platform that makes it easy to share files, comment and more. Templates are fine, but our software takes your business to the next level. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

Related Business Content

If you’re not ready to take our free trial and upgrade your business, but still curious about how ProjectManager can help your business, we’ve got more for you to read. Below is a sampling of the free content on our site,, which includes weekly blogs, guides and, of course, free templates.

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An Introduction to Construction Management

PM Articles by ProjectManager.com. 

Have you ever looked at a bridge, building or structure of any kind and wondered, “how did they do that?” They did it with construction management. Construction is, of course, a project, one that tends to be long, complex and involves many different parties to deliver.

In order to control all those moving parts, construction professionals use construction management for all project delivery methods. Let’s look at what construction management is and then go into some of the key elements. We’ll also discuss the process and offers some free templates to help in your next construction project.

What Is Construction Management?

Construction management is a professional service for project owners. It provides them with the management of the construction project’s schedule, cost, quality, safety, scope and function. Construction management is led by a construction manager, who reports to the owner and is tasked with delivering a successful project.

There are three main parties involved in construction management. They are the owner, who is the one commissioning the work and funds or finances it; the architect or engineer, who is responsible for the design of the project; and the general contractor, who is the person overseeing the day-to-day operations of the project as well as managing the subcontractors.

Construction management is overseeing these parties and the overall project through the lens of the owner’s interests. Therefore, construction management interfaces with all three parties in order to make sure the project is delivered on time and within its budget, if not ideally under budget. The project must also meet the quality, scope and function expectations of the owner. This is accomplished by a combination of experience and education that directs the construction operations through the development of a detailed schedule and budget.

In order to schedule and budget the construction project while adhering to safety and security measures and managing risk, construction management requires project management methodologies and software. ProjectManager is online project management software that helps construction management plan, manage and track projects in real time. Robust Gantt charts organize tasks, resources and costs while linking all four types of dependencies and creating milestones. You can even filter for the critical path and set a baseline to track whether your actual progress is meeting your planned progress. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

ProjectManager's Gantt chartProjectManager's Gantt chart
ProjectManager’s Gantt charts manage construction tasks, costs and resources. Learn more

Key Elements of Construction Management

There are many elements to construction management. It’s a major endeavor, as you can imagine, that oversees the entire construction project as a proxy for the owner. But for this introduction to construction management, we boiled down those elements to a few key ones, which are discussed below.

Construction Delivery Methods

There are five common delivery methods in construction projects. Design-bid-build, also known as traditional building, is probably the most used method. There are three phases: design, bid and build. This is often found in commercial construction projects and while lengthy, it gives owners the opportunity to work with architects and engineers to get a good price for the project.

Design-build (D-B) reduces the timeline that’s associated with design-bid-build by having a single party replace the designer and the contractor. This design-builder is usually an architect, engineer or contractor and works with the owner. This fosters better communication but puts many responsibilities on the shoulders of the design-builder.

Another delivery method is construction manager at risk (CMAR or CM at risk). It’s similar to the design-bid-build method, but the construction manager (CM) is hired by the owner to oversee the project. This is great for owners who need expert help managing the project and often allows the owner to remove themselves from the process.

Then there’s job order contracting (JOC), which works at completing a number of predefined construction tasks. It tends to be used in small-to-medium construction projects, such as repairs, renovations and maintenance. It’s ideal for short timelines and fixed budgets, but not new construction.

Multiple award task order contract (MATOC) is often found in military or government construction work. It involves long-standing contracts for multiple projects, all of which are under a single master contract. There could be multiple contractors at work, there could also only be one.

Construction Bidding Process

The bidding process in construction allows the construction manager to review contractors to hire for the project. Of course, price is a factor, but risk is also assessed. It’s important to look over the safety, financial and insurance resources of these contractors to ensure they’re professional and best suited for the job.

This process begins with a request for general contractors to bid on the project. These general contractors then get bids from subcontractors. There’s a back and forth as questions are answered about the project until the deadline when bids must be submitted and a contractor selected. This leads to contract negotiations and when agreed on, the contract is signed and distributed to the project team. The general contractor who won the bid will then make the final selection of subcontractors.

Construction Contracts

Construction contracts are legally binding documents that are signed by the winning bidder and the owner and outlines the scope of work, risks, duties and legal rights for both parties. There are many different types of contracts, such as a lump sum contract in which the owner pays upon completion of the project. But there are many more, such as percentage rate, item rate, cost plus fixed fee and so on. You have to determine which contract is right for you and the job being done.

The Construction Management Process

Construction management follows project management methodology in order to deliver the project on time and under or within the agreed-upon budget. After the bidding process and the contract has been signed, it’s time to build. Construction projects have phases, and there are five basic phases to the construction management process.


Before any planning is started, an objective for the construction project has to be decided upon. There is also a need to do a feasibility project to ensure that the construction is even viable. That is, there’s a return on investment and the project can be delivered on time and within a reasonable budget. You’ll also need to have a schematic design at this phase. Once this is done, a project initiation document (PID) is made, which will provide the groundwork for the construction plan.


This first step is to assemble a project team who will look at all the work that must be done in order to complete the project. A work breakdown structure (WBS) is often used to divide the larger job into small, more manageable deliverables and tasks. Time is planned in a schedule of activities that includes the costs for executing tasks and the resources needed to do them. This is called preconstruction. At this point, the schedule, budget, risk management plan and communication plan are all finalized. Though, these are living documents that must be reviewed and revised throughout the life cycle of the project.


Now, the project team orders, purchases or rents everything it needs for the construction project. This includes tools and services that’ll be necessary to complete the project. Depending on the scope of the project, this can be demanding. Good communication is vital between the owner, contractor and vendors to ensure everything is done properly. Poor communication leads to bad purchasing and inventory that’s lacking or overstocked; either scenario is bad for business.


This is when the project is executed. During this phase of the process, the general contractor and subcontractors carry out all the planning and procuring of resources that had been done in the previous steps. The construction manager, architect, engineers and project manager will all work together to perform quality control inspections, respond to requests for information (RFIs) and review and approve technical submissions. This is all done to make sure the construction meets the design requirements while keeping to schedule, budget and quality.


The final phase involves a punch list, where the contractor and owner look over the job and catch errors or items that still need to be completed. Once the project has been successfully delivered, however, there’s still work to do. Resources are demobilized, rentals are returned, the worksite is cleaned and subcontractors’ contracts are closed so they can move on to other projects.

Construction management ebook adConstruction management ebook ad

What Does a Construction Manager Do?

The construction manager is usually hired after the owner has finalized a design and is responsible for the day-to-day operations on the job site. They plan every stage of the construction project and make sure that the completed building meets quality and safety requirements while keeping to the timeline and budget.

Construction Manager vs. General Contractor

They might seem like the same job, but there are differences between a construction manager and a general contractor. For example, a general contractor is a business entity, with their own employees, such as foremen or superintendents who work on the job site.

A construction manager is an individual, though they might also be a group of people. However, they differ in their relationship with the owner. General contractors get the job through a bidding process and are part of a group that includes the owner and the design and engineering teams. The general contractor provides a set price and builds every aspect of the project as per their contract.

A general manager works for the owner and works for a predetermined fee, which gives them the incentive to keep costs down. They help during preconstruction and oversee the construction during its execution, hiring subcontractors.

Free Construction Management Templates

While project management software is better suited to managing the processes of construction management, many still work off of spreadsheets. It’s not recommended, but if one isn’t ready to upgrade, there are construction management templates.

ProjectManager is project management software but also a site in which dozens of free project management templates for Excel and Word can be downloaded for free. The following are free of construction-related free templates.

Construction Proposal

Since construction projects are based on the bidding process, construction management needs proposals to prove they are the best choice for the job. Our free construction proposal template for Word gives you space to outline the scope of work, cost and payment, schedule and much more.

Construction Estimate

The more accurate your estimate, the more likely you’ll profit from construction management. Better forecasts come from research and using our free construction estimate template for Excel. With the free template, you can document the direct, indirect, labor and material costs of your construction project during the bidding process.

Construction Schedule

When planning all the activities necessary to complete a construction project on time you need our free construction schedule template. See all your tasks on a timeline to track deliverables, manage resources, add milestones, filter for the critical path, link all four dependencies and track your budget to avoid overspending.

Construction Daily Report

Every day a report must be filed to document the work done and set up for the work coming the next day. Our free construction daily report template for Excel captures the work you did, whether it was completed on schedule, notes who and what is needed to finish the job, to list visitors and the weather conditions.

ProjectManager Helps With Construction Management

Templates are fine, but you may get frustrated with them fairly quickly. That’s because they’re static documents that don’t automatically update or lend themselves to collaboration. ProjectManager is online project management software that has automation and real-time data for greater insights into your project and connects teams across departments, whether they’re in the office or the field.

Monitor Progress in Real Time

Construction management is all about keeping on schedule and not overspending. To make sure you’re following the construction plan, you need to use our real-time dashboard. It captures, calculates and displays easy-to-read graphs and charts on time, cost and four more project metrics. There’s no complicated configuration as with lightweight tools. Our live dashboard is up and running the moment you open the software.

dashboard showing project metrics in real-timedashboard showing project metrics in real-time
Manage Resources to Stay Productive

Keeping track of your resources is another responsibility in construction management. Our resource management features allow you to see the availability of your crew to ease scheduling and then monitor their workload to keep them working at capacity. Use the color-coded workload chart to see who is overallocated or under-allocated. Then balance the team’s workload right from the same chart, increasing productivity and avoiding burnout.

ProjectManager's workload chart with assignment popupProjectManager's workload chart with assignment popup

Manage your team’s hours with secure timesheets. They’re easy to submit and show how many hours each team member has spent on their tasks. You can set recurring tasks and automate workflows to further make work more efficient. There are also customizable reports that give you details on project status, variance and more. We have what you need to manage your construction project.

ProjectManager is award-winning software that empowers teams to collaborate and gives managers transparency to keep them productive. Our flexible tool works for traditional, agile and hybrid methodologies. Join teams qt Avis, Nestle and Siemens who are using our software to deliver success. Get started with ProjectManager today for free.

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