Thinking of managing your own self build project? Why not increase your chances of success by taking one of the project management courses available.
Even if you aren’t, you might find a short course or some basic training helpful to understand the processes and issues involved.
Why Bother With Training?
If you have turned on a TV in the last decade you won’t have missed the abundance of property programmes such as Homes Under The Hammer and the most excellent Grand Designs. These programmes, along with the property boom inspired a lot of have-a-go project managers and you don’t have to watch for long before coming across a DIY project management nightmare.
Many people see the perceived financial saving in taking on management of the project, but underestimate the task before them and to go into it totally unprepared. This often results in time and/or cost over-runs and can impact the final specification and build quality, not to mention causing many a sleepless night!
If you aren’t experienced, project management training can make you aware of the processes involved, the tools available and allow you to plan and control your project, the budget and the welfare of everyone on site.
Of course there are numerous approaches to self building and if you chose a different build route or a build method your involvement may not be required. Just sit back and let someone else do the hard work.
Project Management Courses
Project management applies to all industries and all aspects of life in one form or another, whether it be construction, implementing new IT systems, moving offices, moving house, or organising an 18th Birthday party or wedding. The range of courses is as diverse as the applications and luckily there are a few courses out there that cover the specific needs of the project managing self builder:
- 1 Day Project Management Course – The National Self Build and Renovation Centre has a 1 day course which runs several times a year and covers project management for self builders and renovators. Feedback from this course is excellent.
- The numerous self build and renovation shows that are on around the country have workshops on all manner of subjects including project management. Find out about self build shows or have a look in our events calendar to see when they’re on.
If you are interested in taking things further into professional project or construction management there is an introductory course offered by the Association of Project Managers to give you a taste and a range of HNC, HND, Degree, and Masters courses available at colleges and universities around the country. A quick search on UCAS will show you what’s out there.
At a professional level you will come across PRINCE 2 which is a structured project management method developed by the Office of Government Commerce (OGC). It has become the ‘de facto’ standard in the UK but is way beyond our needs.
Other Useful Courses
Other training you might find useful for managing your self build include:
- Computer Courses – If you intend to use Project Management software such as MS Project or EstimatorXpress to manage your self-build a short course can quickly get you up to speed. Check local colleges and universities for short courses.
- Trade Courses – Even if you are not going to “get your hands dirty” you can gain an insight into the work of the building contractors and the issues they face. Knowledge and understanding will improve your management. There are trade introduction courses available around the country designed specifically with this purpose in mind.
Effective project management is essential for a successful self build and if you haven’t had much experience, taking one of the project management courses available can set you off in the right direction.
Project management training will help you plan your project, control the quality and improve your chances of completing on time, safely and with a firm handle on costs.
Getting it wrong can be costly both financially and on your stress levels. The dream can quickly turn into a nightmare, so do your homework and be prepared.
In addition to taking a course there are plenty of other resources to help prepare you for managing your self build. First of all, have a read through the rest of our project management section but also consider the following:
Knowledge is power!
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