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You already understand the value of sticking to a Budget.  But you might not realize that, even if your bottom line matches your goal, your project could still stand to lose a few pounds of “project fat” that are keeping it from becoming a more efficient, practical version of itself. So how do you whip your project into shape? First, you need to understand the areas where you can trim some excess waste – and then you have to take steps to get lean.

Cutting Calories – which areas of your project need to be trimmed down?


As you look at your project, you may be wondering where to even begin to look for areas where you can increase efficiency by cutting out unnecessary steps or supplies. Many experts recommend that you turn to a new gym coach – TIM WOOD. The mnemonic TIM WOOD stands for seven areas that can usually be trimmed down for a leaner project:


  • Transport
  • Inventory
  • Motion
  • Waiting
  • Over-processing
  • Overproduction
  • Defects


Each of these areas usually has at least one method or process that can be improved. For instance, look at inventory. How do you manage the inventory needed for your projects? Are your team members spending too much time entering data into a system that does not promote a smooth work flow? One of the best ways to determine if your inventory processes are efficient is to ask your team members who are tasked with managing inventory! They are by far one of your greatest resources, and can give you a practical understanding of the daily responsibilities involved in each step of the inventory process.


Or you may need to become leaner in the area of overproduction, which is a common issue in many projects. Teams tend to follow patterns, whether on purpose or just out of habit. It’s a good thing to be so familiar with a process that you can do it almost without thinking; however, this also means you may be repeating mistakes that are bogging your project down. Before you determine the amount of materials you need for a project, take your time and consider when you will need the materials, how quickly your team will go through them, and whether you could get the same job done with fewer materials available. Many teams often find themselves ordering extra materials in case of an emergency. However, if your team learns to operate efficiently and within the limits of the materials available, you will find that you can save both time and money through this increased productivity.


Getting in Shape – put your project through its workout routine


After you determine which areas can be trimmed down for a leaner project, you need to start taking steps to get rid of the unnecessary waste. Again, talking to your team members is a crucial part of this process. They will know which practices are essential to each part of the job, and which practices are in desperate need of improvement. Spend time in each area to give yourself a place to start trimming down.


Set small goals – you can’t change everything overnight. But even becoming leaner in just one area will improve your efficiency and time management. Make a schedule that outlines when you want to accomplish your leaner practices in each area, and work with your team to make them happen. It will likely be a slow start – you are not only renovating entire processes, but you also have to help your team members break old habits that don’t work with your new, fit style.


Just like any exercise, you will have to practice! Results don’t come within an hour of a workout. But if you take the time to consult your team, plan ahead, and then follow through with your goals, your project can become a lean, efficient, well-budgeted machine.


About Impact Construction Management

Headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana, Impact Construction Management is a full-service construction management firm. Founded by Louis Buonaiuto and Richard Bowlin, Impact Construction Management has been managing construction projects for clients throughout the Midwest and South for over 10 years. From our very first project to today, our focus has been on delivering the results our clients want by providing responsive service, up-front pricing and the highest-quality workmanship.




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