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Pre-Construction Meeting Agenda

This agenda should be review and agreed upon in advance by the prime contractor’s project manager and the owner’s representative or construction manager. This meeting will likely take most of one day, and should be attended by all project participants including owner, designer, and project managers, superintendents and foremen of the prime contractor and all major subcontractors and suppliers. During the meeting, designate one person to take good notes for two reasons: (1) to clarify any potential subsequent misunderstandings, and (2) to share with project participants who were unable to attend the meeting.

  1. Introductions – introduce everyone attending including their name, organization, title, and role on the project.
  2. Exchange organization charts – include “rolodex” information like full names, titles, mailing and office addresses, phone numbers (office line, private line, cell phone, fax, emergency number such as home number). Clarify who has what authority and the limits of that authority.
  3. Site issues – Clarify the project premises address (and PO Box or mailing address, if different) and the field office phone number and fax number. Clarify the prime contractor’s planned layout of the construction yard including the location of office trailers and storage trailers, entry and exit points, location of existing underground utilities, existence of any potential underground hazards. Discuss survey responsibilities (owner and prime contractor).
  4. Explain the plans and “rules” for on-site conduct: access roads, delivery truck access routes, which gate(s) will be used for entry (including possible dual gates), when it is appropriate to enter the prime project trailer, what other trailers are permitted on site, project site signage rules and requirements, planned temporary or partial street closures, location of employee parking, location of public transportation, how laborers are to make telephone calls, location of toilets, security systems, lighting, special safety fencing, etc.
  5. Permits – review which permits are required and who is responsible for obtaining them and paying for them. Clarify the agencies from which the permits will be obtained including addresses, phone and fax numbers, internet application sites (if available) and contact persons.
  6. Final construction documents – clarify for all parties which sets of plans, specs and amendments are final for construction and assure all are “on the same page”. Also inquire among the parties as to the existence of any previously undisclosed or un-shared soils reports, environmental reports and requirements and/or any other relevant reports and studies.
  7. Phasing & milestones – review the contract requirements.
  8. Pre-mobilization requirements – review all items which are required prior to mobilization, possibly these include owner approvals of safety plans, contractor quality control plans, interim CPM schedules and so forth.
  9. Submittals – review and agree on a master list of submittals and shop drawings required in the Specifications (this becomes the Master Submittal Log). Clarify the contractually required procedures as well as other agreed-upon procedures for this process including the number of copies to be submitted. Clarify the amount of time the owner/designer has to review and approve the submittals and shop drawings per the General Conditions. Discuss how to expedite this process and agree upon a monitoring program (perhaps weekly meetings with owner, designer, construction manager, general contractor and relevant subcontractors). Use this opportunity to emphasize the importance of timely submittals as a way of avoiding project delay. If known, clarify which submittals and shop drawings are on the project’s CPM critical path. Assure all appropriate information is recorded on the CPM schedule (it is recommended that each submittal appear as two activities tied logically to their successors).
  10. Mobilization plan – describe the prime contractor’s plan for mobilizing, including any phasing involved and how various timing elements might affect various parties.
  11. Work constraints – review any legal, local or contractual restraints on work hours, travel, noise (including noise ordinances), special consideration for adjacent property owners and neighbors.
  12. Relocation plans – review the requirements for relocation of existing utilities, buildings, or other physical items, plus any planned service interruptions including any restrictions on service interruptions.
  13. Safety plan – review the prime’s safety plans, the date of the upcoming pre-construction safety meeting, any project-specific safety requirements, location of first aid kits and how to contact emergency services, location of nearest hospitals and first aid clinics, provisions for substance abuse testing, requirements for subcontractor submittals of safety plans, etc. Use this opportunity to emphasize the central importance of safety on this project.
  14. Inspection plans – review who will be inspecting what, when and how. Consider setting up a future meeting with the chief inspector and the subcontractor foremen to review the reasonable inspector expectations and requirements. Clarify who will perform periodic life safety inspections and who is in charge of compliance with local, state and national codes.
  15. Testing plans – review what testing is required at construction phasing milestones and upon completion of construction. Identify what testing will be done in-house vs. by outside firms, and identify who is responsible for calling for the testing and who will perform the testing (including company names, contact persons, phone and fax numbers and email addresses), identify what notification times are required (eg. often elevator testing requires a 14-day notice). Clarify who will pay for the various tests. Explain and agree upon what reports are required, any specific format required, number of copies, distribution lists, etc. Assure this information is recorded on the CPM schedule.
  16. Owner-furnished items – review the owner’s plans for furnishing materials and/or equipment as well as possible separate prime contracts between the owner and other parties. Assure this information is recorded on the CPM schedule.
  17. Drawing log – clarify who is responsible for maintaining the project drawing log as well as as-built drawings. Discuss how the designers and constructors will interact – set the tone for a friendly exchange of information. Clarify where the onsite as-builts will be available to subcontractors.
  18. Internet project management system – if utilized on this project, discuss how the project participants are expected to utilize the project’s internet database. Agree on dates for training and who should attend. Discuss how this impacts several of the items below including #19, #20, #21, and #22.
  19. Daily reports – clarify which persons are expected to create a daily report and how that report will be maintained and shared with others. It is recommended that the prime contractor and owner swap daily reports (eg. the report of the superintendent and the inspector). Agree upon the format to be used. Discuss and clarify how report writers should incorporate subjective comments regarding problems, progress, potential change issues, etc. and what limits should be placed on “casual language”.
  20. Communication and correspondence – discuss and agree upon a communication plan including voice communication (via radio and telephone), email, and informal and formal written communication and when to use one vs. the other. Decide what logs and files will be maintained of such communication.
  21. RFI process – discuss how Requests For Information will be processed and what time frames for review and response can be expected. It is prudent to establish and agree upon a “priority system” for handling RFIs. For example, “Priority 1″ indicates an answer is needed in 24 hours; “Priority 2″ = 3 days, “Priority 3″ = one week, “Priority 4″ = two to three weeks. Decide on how often the owner, designer and prime contractor and impacted subcontractors and suppliers will meet to review outstanding RFIs (weekly is best). Use this as an opportunity to clarify to all parties the importance of the smooth, effective RFI process. It may also be prudent to review the RFI form and remind parties how the prime contractor and designer expect the RFI form to be filled out (eg. list the drawing page number and detail number, spec section, exact location of the issue, suggested solutions if any, exact date the response is needed, etc.).
  22. Change Order process – describe the steps and requirements in the change order process. Clarify who is authorized to issue change orders and the dollar limitations of those persons, if any. Clarify who is the prime contractor’s authorized representative for negotiation of change orders. Discuss and agree now on labor and equipment rates, percentages for overhead and profit, small tools, and, if possible, the daily rates for the prime and each subcontractor for field extended overhead and home office extended overhead (or a future date by which these daily rates will be made available to the owner). Establish a recurring weekly meeting to review pending or proposed change orders; this meeting will be attended by the authorized representatives of the owner, designer, prime contractor and affected subcontractors. Its purpose is to keep the process moving and to expedite change issues and resolve disagreements.
  23. Dispute resolution processes – review the contractual processes for resolution of disputes. Discuss what alternative dispute resolution mechanisms are in place – such as partnering, Dispute Review Board, mediation, arbitration – and the adequacy of these (or the likely dangers if none are in place). If the parties feel that the contractual mechanisms may not be sufficient for this project, discuss what additional tools should be made available to the parties – knowing that disputes in construction are as common as fish in the ocean. This is a good opportunity for the owner and prime contractor to set the tone for fast, fair and friendly resolution of disputes on this project.
  24. Payment requisitions – review and discuss the contractual requirements for payment requisitions as well as the prime contractor’s additional requirements of subcontractors. This is a good time to establish a monthly pre-review of the proposed pay request, attended by the chief inspector, prime contractor project manager, owner’s representative, designer representative and possibly the lender, if in the private sector. Review any required or proposed certification process to be used to assure timely payment. Assure that preliminary lien notices have been filed, where appropriate, and according to local law.