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  • November 17, 2016

5 Things You Gotta Nail Running a Multi Site As-Built Survey Program

5 Things You Gotta Nail Running a Multi Site As-Built Survey Program

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How To Manage A Multi-Site As-Built Survey Program

Over the last few weeks, this blog has been all about high volume “Multi Site” surveys.  These are store survey programs involving hundreds or even thousands of locations across the country, where each As-Built survey needs to individually scheduled, tracked, completed and delivered to a uniform standard of deliverable AND on a specified timeline.  The sheer pace of such a program, sometimes requiring completion and delivery of as many as 50 locations per week, can easily cause things to run off track – a potentially spectacular fail with so much at stake for the client.

To successfully run a site survey program like this requires a whole other level of project management and coordination, which very few companies are able to do well.  At PPM, we think that Multi Site As-Built program management is one of our core competencies, thanks to our longtime focus on workflow processes, as well as experience completing over 12,000 surveys.  Here are the top 5 things we focus on when we are managing a Multi Site As-Built survey program:

  1. Client Communication
    • This is the top requirement that our clients have for us when we start a new program, so it is #1 for a reason. Our clients deserve to know the status of all locations, and should be alerted immediately if anything goes awry.
    • In the beginning of every program, we ask the client about their preferred method of receiving general updates and urgent alerts, along with frequency. We typically like to set up a weekly check-in call to address issues, get direct status updates, answer questions, discuss deliverable feedback, and just plain see how you’re doing!
  2. Scheduling
    • The scheduling logistics can make or break a program. The ideal scenario that leads to the best result is when we are able to obtain a list of ALL program locations prior to full rollout.  It’s even better if the client passes along a general order of priority – whether it’s regional, by franchisee, or any other parameter.  This allows us to strategize our approach in the most efficient way possible.
    • When we get a list of locations we map them all out, and within minutes can see where we have direct coverage, indirect coverage, or perhaps no coverage at all (such as North Dakota.) From there we begin pairing locations with qualified surveyors and determining our field, QA, and delivery timeline.

Map of live As-Built survey locations

  1. Tracking / Reporting
    • Our entire Program Management Team has direct program metrics and targets based on the Client/Program needs, that are monitored closely to ensure we’re always on the right track.
    • We use a combination of our internal program management software that houses all the data along with an external platform that transforms this data into easily digestible charts/graphs. These allow us to see, at a glance, how many and which locations are…
      1. Upcoming to be surveyed
      2. Coming in from surveyors
      3. In the drafting phase
      4. Due to the Client
      5. Past due or in Revisions, if any
      6. …and almost anything else we might need to track for a specific program.

Program Tracking Dashboard

  1. Teamwork
    • A large, nationwide As-Built survey program can have as many as 50+ people involved, so it truly does require exceptional teamwork and coordination to execute successfully. Here’s a few of the people directly involved on each individual survey:
      1. Program Manager – overall responsibility for success of the program, as defined by Client Satisfaction.
      2. Assistant Program Manager – responsible for scheduling, invoicing, surveyor coordination and status, file intake, and a million other catch-all items!
      3. Production Lead – responsible for coordinating our internal drafting and preparation of our final deliverable package. Also helps with initial training/onboarding of surveyors as well as our internal drafters.
      4. CAD Drafter – Performs Quality Assurance, CAD/Deliverable setup, and final packaging.
      5. Surveyor – Performs all field work on location.
  1. Flexibility
    • We love it when things go as planned, but are always prepared to make adjustments or contingency plans when the inevitable happens – client needs may change, weather implications, access issues, or (real situation!) you’re dealing with a paranoid franchisee with major trust issues. You name it, we’ve seen it, resolved it, and kept trucking along!

One of the “contingencies” we have had to make adjustments for!

There are lots of other things of course that go into national As-Built site survey program, but we feel like if we can get these 5 things right we will be pedaling downhill with everything else.

Well, after 4 weeks on this subject, that wraps up this series on Multi Site As-Builts. I hope you enjoyed the articles and as always, please share any comments or questions below and I WILL reply!