As a Michigan asphalt paving company partnered with SaveOnPaving.com, we know all about the frustrations and practical challenges of life on the job, from personal experience.
We are a leading driveway paving contractor in Michigan and here’s our take on what tips we would give to any other project manager in the business.
COMMUNICATE WITH THE PLANT
You will need to call the plant to keep yourself and them in the loop about your needs. You also need to ensure that you stay on track with all the deliveries and trucks that are coming in and out.
If something has happened at the plant to slow down or even worse, stop the production, then it is going to affect your asphalt mix. You need to be kept in the know.
Think about the little things, like ensuring the delivery trucks don’t get lost on route to the site – make sure they are all coming on the same route and know where they are going.
When it comes to ordering the right amount of mix for the job, it is usually best to give an estimate of “between” two amounts. To begin with, request the lower amount, but ask the plant to communicate with you when the rest is ready. Then you will be ready for it as well and it opens up the channels of communication with the plant all the while.
DON’T MOW DOWN A TEAM MEMBER!
It should go without saying that you don’t want any accidents on your site. But it can be easier said than done in a construction site.
If you have a new team member on board, take extra care with them.
If you have them working right in front of a haul truck, to help get the mix right to the paver, then that person is potentially in danger.
They need to be aware of the danger zone they are in. Make sure they don’t get caught in the midst of the haul truck and the paver.
And if they must shovel in there, then the truck needs to stop properly and park up.
A team member should be put on duty to look out for potential danger zones for other workers.
Some asphalt paving companies in Michigan use whistles on site so team members can alert others to the potential dangers.
Try not to get complacent to all the beeps and alarms that there are on the site, to alert you to any danger. Always look!
YOU DON’T ALWAYS NEED TO TRAIN STAFF ALL THE TIME
If you have new workers on board, you will of course need to train them. And if you are a site manager, it will be your responsibility to do so.
However, think carefully when you choose to train them and when not to.
Wait until you have the time and patience to train them. Otherwise, put them on a task that you know they can do.
Don’t let them loose on the job that has a steep financial penalty for mistakes or a strict time deadline on it. Start them off somewhere mistakes can be rectified easily afterwards.
Start each day properly and make sure that all the water and fuel tanks are topped up. You don’t want to be doing this sort of thing when the shift is underway!
Try and work out when the tanks will run low and be prepared for it. Carry things like an extra water tip with you.
Work out in advance how much material you need to order and don’t let it come as a surprise to you at the end of the job, when it will be costly and long-winded to order.