This Monday Tech Talk will focus the standard services stage 1 – 3. Construction projects typically follow six project stages, with each stage outlining specific requirements that must be completed. During each phase, Health and Safety Officers, Managers, and Agents are responsible for different duties.

Health and safety consultants are not often involved in the first three stages, but will typically join the professional team during stage 4. Here are some of the responsibilities of a health and safety agent during stages 1-3. Construction projects can differ in size, stakeholder involvement, budget, and delivery date. However, one thing remains constant: they are always complex and demanding processes.

Fortunately, the continuous development of digital solutions has made project management much easier and more accurate. Additionally, the collection of valuable data from the field can significantly improve and standardize the construction process for future projects.

Stage 1 – Project Initiation and Brief

The initial stage of a construction project usually begins with the client’s vision. This is where the dream takes shape and research is conducted to determine the ideal location and necessary specifications/standards. The duration of the conception stage can vary depending on the project. It may take anywhere from a few days to several months, depending on the urgency of the project’s completion. Typically, construction workers are not heavily involved during this stage, as the responsibility lies with the project owner to establish the project’s vision and direction.

Stage 2 – Concept and Feasibility

The success of a construction project hinges on Stage 2, which is a critical phase. To turn an idea into a reality, SMART goals should be employed, ensuring that they are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Additionally, the final outcome of the project should be profitable.

At this stage, a preliminary design and cost proposal is presented to the client, who decides whether or not to proceed with the project. It is also essential for the Safety Agent to attend design meetings and provide guidance on potential costing and constructability challenges that may arise during the project.

Stage 3 – Design Development

During Stage 2 of a construction project, it is essential for the Safety Agent to attend design meetings that become more detailed and require significant coordination.

At the beginning of Stage 3, the legal responsibilities and liabilities are discussed with each designer involved in the project. It is mandatory for designers to sign and confirm adherence to SANS codes throughout their designs. These declarations and appointments are then included in the Construction Work Permit Application later on.

As the project design progresses, the Safety Agent provides guidance on constructability and maintenance, focusing on health and safety items. In Stage 3, the safety plans for early works are approved, and the safety file is audited.

This Monday Tech Talk was an overview of the standard services stage 1 – 3 during a construction project.

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