The homebuilding project management communication plan identifies how critical project information will be communicated to key stakeholders and the project team throughout the project’s life cycle. The plans also identify specific stakeholders and team members who will be receiving information, the communication channel, and communication frequency. The first step in developing the project communication plan is to identify communication goals and objectives. For the homebuilding project, the primary goal for the communication plan is to keep key stakeholders such as the client (Donny Encarta) and project team members like the architect, contractor, and structural engineer updated on the project’s status, expected deliverables, and key milestones. The next step in developing a homebuilding communication plan is to identify key stakeholders. Notably, the key stakeholders in this project include the client, government authorities (who grant permits and approvals before construction), project leader, project champion or sponsor, and the project team. Besides, the step involves prioritizing stakeholders according to their interests and influence on the project development to determine the necessary communication level and channel. The third step in communication plan development is to identify communication methods to reach each stakeholder and project team member. Notably, the communication method selection depends on the information urgency and the type of stakeholder. For the homebuilding project, the primary communication methods will include in-person meetings, video conferences, phone calls, and emails. The final development stage in the homebuilding project communication plan is identifying communication frequency and setting a communication frequency calendar for all planned communications.
Once the project communication management plan is developed, the next step is to manage communications between project team members and stakeholders. Managing project communication involves monitoring communication among team members and stakeholders, storing important communication documents and files, retrieving stored communication files during meetings, and ensuring that the targeted stakeholders receive and understand communication messages. One of the most important processes in project communication management is to ensure that any relevant feedback is provided during each line of communication to establish understanding. In addition, effective feedback from key stakeholders guarantees that the project team’s performance is consistent with the project goals and objectives at each milestone. Finally, controlling communication management in a homebuilding project involves ensuring that all stakeholders’ information requirements are satisfied and providing an optimal information flow to all members. Controlling communication in management involves monitoring the project team’s performance feedback reports, documenting important information, and managing project communication data such as sensitive financial reports. In this regard, the project manager has the responsibility to ensure the effectiveness of overall communications to maintain project team members such as contractors and architects engaged.
Part A: Communication Plan Table
|Stakeholders and Team Members||Expectations||Communication Frequency||Priority||Communication Medium||Notes and Attachments|
|Client||· Project updates and development progress
· Overall design aesthetics that meet functional needs.
· Timely completion of milestones.
|After completion of each project milestone||High priority- must receive weekly development status updates.||Email, In-person meetings, and telephone.||Include project timelines and schedules. Attach the Gantt chart for enhanced visibility.|
|Consultant||· Progress updates
· Consultation on specialty areas
· Needs and risks reports
|As needed (anytime the project team needs expert guidance on specialty areas)||High priority – must receive updates on development bottlenecks and identified risks after project initiation.||Email, in-person meetings, team meetings, and conference calls||The consultant can help with the definition of performance requirements and generate performance reports for team members|
|Structural Engineer||· Status updates
· Using status updates and project development reports to ensure the construction adheres to state and national standards.
· Milestone completion reports
|After completion of each milestone||High priority – collaborates with the architect and the consultant to ensure the construction is on track||Emails, in-person meetings, and conference meetings.||The structural engineer communicates building standards and codes to the contractor and subcontractors at the beginning of each construction stage.|
|Contractor||· Architectural plans and design documents and files (such as the building’s blueprint)
· Design specification document
· Reports on changes or modifications to the building’s design
|As needed||High priority – requires regular updates regarding changes in plans and design specifications.||Emails, in-person meetings, and conference calls||All team members and stakeholders are required to send information on project changes and modifications to the contractor.|
|Sub-contractors||· Design specification documents
· Project design documents
· Architectural plans for each section of the building
|As needed||Medium priority- mainly communicates with the contractor and material suppliers.||Email and in-person meetings with the contractor||Sub-contractors will use design specifications and architectural plans to make key decisions on the requirements and installation.|
|Project Sponsor/Client||· Financial documents like budget reports and cost estimation reports
· Procurement receipts
· Project team’s performance reports for evaluation of the team’s performance.
|At the end of each milestone||High priority – requires regular financial updates to oversee financing and completion of the project.||Email, In-person meetings, and telephone||All additional costs in the course of the project must be reported to the project sponsor.|
|Regulatory Authorities||· Status updates and reports
· Project plan and design specifications
|At the end of each building stage||Medium priority – requires development updates at every building stage||Email and In-person meetings||All the milestone reports and installations must be relayed to regulatory authorities to ensure compliance.|
|Financial Advisor||· Budget reports
· Financial feasibility reports
|Before major financial spending||Medium priority – requires financial records to ensure that the project is cost-effective.||Email, In-person meetings, and telephone||All financial records and cost adjustments must be reported to the financial advisor.|
|Architect||· Information regarding design specifications and aesthetics.
· Project progress updates for monitoring to ensure that the construction is on track.
· Using project progress reports to verify that the construction meets environmental and safety standards.
|At the end of each construction milestone||High priority- communicates with the consultant to oversee the design and construction process.||Emails, team meetings, and conference calls.||Must meet with the constructor and structural engineer before the start of each milestone.|
Part B: Diagram Associating Project Team Members with Stakeholders
The diagram shows communication lines between project team members and key stakeholders. The diagram shows bidirectional communication between stakeholders and team members without a common data environment, such as data portals. Notably, a common data environment is not necessary for the home construction project due to its small scope. Most of the communications will be facilitated through Emails and face-to-face meetings. However, the project manager will control communication between project team members and stakeholders. The rationale for controlling communication in the homebuilding project management is to ensure that all team members and stakeholders are on the same page regarding project goals and objectives, eliminate miscommunication and conflicts among team members, and minimize project failure. Notably, poor communication in project management is also reflected in overcommunicating with stakeholders. As such, the project manager must ensure a perfect balance in information flow to ensure that key stakeholders, such as the client, are not overwhelmed with information overload. The primary method of avoiding this imbalance is to collaborate with the project team and stakeholders to establish the frequency of information sharing and means of sharing the information, as outlined in the project communication plan. The last step in communication control is ensuring the effective use of technology, especially when communicating with virtual team members. In this light, the project manager must ensure that team members and stakeholders understand the communication technology devices to be used during the project.
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