From CREATING INTELLECTUAL COMMUNITIES, Volume 1, Number 2, 2007
Just as a cornerstone provides for a strong and stable foundation, good communication and documentation anchor a construction project. Well-executed construction documents organized in a logical and well-labeled manner serve to protect everyone on a construction project, from the owner or client to the architect and contractors. More importantly, thorough documentation facilitates good communication, and that communication is essential to a successful project. With strong and continuous communication and documentation management, institutions reap the benefits of a project that is completed on time and on budget.
The critical function of good documentation management is not lost on Ayers/Saint/Gross Construction Administrator, Tradonna Massenburg. The job she now holds was created specifically to insure that every written communication, construction document, and contract is properly labeled, tracked, executed, and filed to protect the interests of everyone involved in the design and construction process.
“Good relationships and good communication are the hallmarks of a successful project,” explains Massenburg, “but without the documentation to track every step of the process, good relationships deteriorate quickly when a problem occurs.”
Massenburg should know. As a project “gatekeeper,” she serves as the center of the wheel on a construction project, insuring that the lines of communication remain open between all of the “spokes” – the client, the architect, the construction manager, and each of the contractors. But more than that, she manages every piece of documentation, insuring that it is approved by all relevant parties and properly stamped and filed for retrieval at a moment’s notice if a problem or question arises.