Ask a Woman of Webcor: Your Most Difficult Scope Item to Coordinate & Build

To wrap up Women in Construction Week, we are sharing the second article in Webcor's continuing series, "Ask a Woman of Webcor."

March 11, 2022

Employee Spotlight

To wrap up Women in Construction Week, we are sharing the second article in Webcor's continuing series, "Ask a Woman of Webcor." Today's question: What was the most difficult scope item you've had to coordinate and build?

Graciela Santillan, Sr. Project Manager

Graciela is currently closing out the Living on Vine Project in Los Angeles, also known as the Four Seasons Residences.

"The most difficult scope I coordinated was the doors, frames, and hardware (DFH) at the San Bernardino Justice Center (SBJC). I had never managed DFH before and it seemed straightforward at first. As I dug into the task, I realized that there were so many aspects to coordinate. The SBJC had several wall types for both detention and non-detention facilities. The hardware consultant failed to coordinate the security system with the detention doors, so I had to sort through all the scenarios and figure out which doors required the security redesign. To add to the difficulty, we had unrealistic expectations about the "just in time" delivery. Once I factored in priority walls, detention areas, and phasing, there were about 100 deliveries expected for this scope alone!!  The subcontractor almost had a heart attack when I sent him the delivery schedule."

Karen Turcios, Assistant Project Manager

Karen is currently assigned to Preconstruction & Estimating.

"The dining center at UC Merced was an all-steel building with lots of fancy dining equipment and MEPs (mechanical, electrical, plumbing) to make that equipment run smoothly, and although I can't take credit for coordinating the steel and installation of MEPs by myself, being involved with the coordination was definitely a challenge. What made it a challenge for me was mostly inexperience. It was my first time running trade coordination, and I just remember feeling like I was on fire (internally) having to run the BIM coordination meetings and often not sure if subs were just walking all over me because of my inexperience, and that translated to the field install as well. I learned so much through that process though and truly experienced the importance of leaning on your team and the experts in the rooms to make any difficult coordination effort possible. The most important thing I took from being on fire (internally) all the time was never being afraid to ask the 'dumb question' -- I got really comfortable with that. And as far as the steel structure goes, I'm still learning!"

Bhavana Dalia, Assistant Project Manager

Bhavana is currently working at the American Express SFO Centurion Lounge Renovation and Expansion.

"My most difficult scope was the MEP Sustainability Commissioning testing at San Francisco International Airport, Boarding Area B (BAB), in Phase 1. The reason for this was there were multiple BMS controls conversations with several people over the course of multiple years. The changes that occurred in the plan were documented, but not all the reasons were documented. When it was time for testing, the third-party agent was very new and difficult to deal with. In the initial tests, our subcontractor kept failing the test for reasons nobody could figure out. There were a lot of difficult conversations when we could not reason why there were multiple changes in the plan. Our subcontractors and MEP (mechanical, electrical, plumbing) team incorporated a rigorous pre-testing schedule to make sure we passed all the tests. The plan worked, and our subcontractors passed all the tests again in the span of two weeks. We recovered the commissioning schedule again, which was awesome. After the tests were complete, we signed off on HVAC controls testing for Phase 1 in 6 months' time, closing 400-plus punch list items. A huge kudos to the MEP team, including the subcontractors. The owner was very impressed, as this is big for a project of 100,000-plus square feet. In the next two phases, we, along with our subcontractors, passed everything in one go and literally had a minimum punch list because we already knew what to expect."