Lean architectureis a new paradigm in architectural methodology. It involves the application oflean thinking in every aspect of professional practice. Lean aims at smarterinformation flow and the improving the 3 main goals for implementation byarchitects: Project management, documentation and technology.
This paper aimsat understanding the implementation of Lean practice to maintain quality ofwork as well as the time of the project. It will detail out bringing cross-disciplinary teams together at theoutset of a project, reducing the need to expend resources on redesign,construction delays, and change orders. Lean architectural identifieswhat adds value and aluminates what does not.This paper serves as an overview of this improvement strategy as it applies toproject management and discusses different applications of the Lean Principlesfor each phase of project management. Obtaining and managingproject resourcesArchitecturefirms often get a variety of projects at the same time and it is important forthe firm to spread their resources accordingly to every project in order tomake sure the project is completed in time. When a team is focuses all of itsappropriate resources to complete a single project at one time, it will benefitin the project realizing faster.
Most often firms focus on having the same teamwork on multiple projects at the same time through resource sharing. Instead asystem to focus on one project at one time should be implemented. This helpsrealize the team to complete the project sooner as well as focus their completeattention. Most project managers struggle with the concept of projectprioritization as they want all the projects to be completed as soon aspossible. Without proper project prioritization none of the project wouldeither anticipated results. Prioritization of projects should be looked at bothfinancially as well as the scheduling of the project itself. Working withconsultants and contractors provides the opportunity to see the development andpractical application of lean thinking especially the shift our focus from theconstruction site to the audio project stages and then to implementing the leanculture in the teams contributing to the project.
Oncea project has been set selected then comes the planning/design phase. Mostoften project managers create solid project plans but the field to account forthe other projects that would be using the same resources. It is necessary toallocate time taking into consideration several other projects using the sameresources at the same time projects using the same resources at the same time.In an architectural project two weeks of design time maybe assigned for a healthcareproject but at the same time they may be other projects which would need designwork by the same people. Thus, it’s important to take into consideration theschedule of all the team members working on the project. Before adding a teammember in the contract of the project it would be useful to discuss with themthe amount of time they have available for the period of the project. Once thistime frame is available an efficient scheduling could be establishedPlanninga project helps plan the project timeline, budget, tasks and overall quality ofthe project. It is also critical that the project team identify any anythingthat may go wrong and also add Solutions to the issues that may arise.
Insteadof every team establishing their individual schedule such as the constructionmanager architect consultants etc. it would be efficient to have the entireteam together and establish a schedule. This maps out a plan and reduces anyrisk of a major delay or an over -budget. Schedule would be the driver of theproject planning status and performance. Adaptinga visual management board to assign tasks is a great technique for managingwork. This would avoid the many to-do lists or trying to track information viaemail, Excel sheets or through various folders. Using full plan methods is oneof the visual management systems in architecture this would help stay focusedand get work done efficiently.
Visual management helps save time by simplifyingthe complex scheduling process, reducing waste by communicating, overcomingimpediments to flow as well as collaborating on improving the team.Executing tasks in theproject planInthe execution phase of the project, planning of the project has been concluded.The project manager tracks and report the progress of the project as itproceeds. It is necessary for him/her to keep notes as to the issues that ariseas well as provide solutions to them. Project execution tools such as Kanban-style, agile project management system are components of Lean thinking.
Leanproject management streamlines the handoff between various teams and alsoeliminates downtime through the project.