1) Good Planning
Having a comprehensive budget is critical to any project, however forecast revenue and actual revenue can be two very different things, which is why a good project manager will put the necessary contracts in place as provisions, including variation clauses. This is to ensure that in the event of any disputes, or additional expenditure, parties have clear predetermined direction and resolution.

Potential issues will always differ from project to project, however a good project manager will rely on their expertise to forecast any potential issues and cover them in the contracts. Potential issues may include:
– unpredictable weather
– changes in design by consultants
– poor workmanship
– delays in materials or
– delays in survey and sign-off
– unexpected on-site delays (such as underground issues)
– scope to accelerate works if delays occur, and who incurs losses

2) Monitors The Numbers Constantly
Variations add up and have a compounding effect on the end project, so it’s important for a project manager to constantly monitor variations against the timeframe. Therefore, it’s critical that variations are handled in a timely matter as the project is evolving to avoid late responses to the changes, hence negatively affecting the project’s costs and profit margins.

3) Keeps An Eye On Subcontractors
A shrewd and experienced project manager will be able to discern critical matters before they happen, and part of that is keeping an eye on subcontractor behaviour. Untoward delays in their performance, or stalling while waiting for supplies could be warning signs that their company is struggling.

As such, a variation can be triggered when the subcontractor cannot deliver on their agreement and must be replaced to finish the work at hand. Again, a highly experienced and well prepared project manager will be able to mitigate these risks and get the project back on track in the most efficient way possible.