Energy blogs

  • Dc
    27 Feb 2015 - 11:36 by Dc

    Following the February 6th Green Button event in San Diego, the EERE blog on Green Button went live:

    Join the conversation about this below.

  • WayneKienbaum
    23 Feb 2015 - 06:58 by WayneKienbaum

    Construction Contractor

    (Image Credit:

    The commercial construction industry has witnessed balanced growth in the early part of 2015, and there is absolutely no doubt this growth will continue throughout the year. This is very good news for commercial contractors who are all set to reap rewards in the form of increased commercial construction projects.

    But the question is – will they be able to handle the increasing number of projects they will get their hands on?

    The problem is, when it comes to the management of commercial construction projects, even the best contractors falter at times.

    Managing a commercial construction project effectively can be a tough nut to crack. But this doesn't mean it is rocket science!

    You must make a mental note that it's not just management but effective management that will give your construction business the competitive edge. And there is very little room for error.

    From setting up estimates and budgets to developing the construction strategy- all this needs proper management.

    So how do we make sure it's done correctly?

    Here are 9 great tips for effective management of commercial construction projects. Take a look. These will surely help drive the results you are looking for.

    1. Defining project goals plays a paramount role

    What is the crux of any construction project?

    The answer is – Clearly outlining the specific objectives that need to be achieved from the project.

    Without the first step, it is just not possible to move ahead. You must see to it that this part is meticulously done. It will also be a very good idea to map the different teams involved in the project; also create a chart that defines the responsibilities and duties of each.

    2. Brainstorming sessions for great planning

    Rule of Thumb: You shouldn't step into anything without planning. Otherwise,you won't be able to achieve the goals of your project.

    And what will that lead to?

    In one word - failure.

    Detailed and organized planning is one of the critical elements of any successful project.

    Besides planning, you could have brainstorming sessions with various departments in order to get a clearer picture of project deliverables and how you can go about achieving them. This way you will also be able to come up with better ideas and creative solutions for various problems.

    3. Achieving deliverables on time

    You do not have all the time in the world for that one construction project.

    One of the major responsibilities in terms of managing a commercial construction project is to ensure that the team achieves project deliverables without any unnecessary delays.

    For achieving this, you could break a complex process into a series of simple steps. By doing so, you will effectively be able to evaluate the pace of the project.

    4. Identification of high priority tasks

    So you have a plethora of tasks at hand. How do you manage?

    When you are juggling lots of different tasks at the same time, it's important to identify and focus on high priority tasks.

    By doing so, you will make sure that all the important (and time consuming tasks) are taken care of before the secondary tasks. More importantly, you will be able to complete these set of tasks within the project deadline.

    5. Aiming for successful team coordination

    What is the key to any successful business?

    Team coordination!

    This will not only lead to a much better construction strategy but it will also help in achieving the goals within the desired time.

    First and foremost, it is important to find out what role better fits an employee considering his/her knowledge and skills. Once this is done, then the team roles can be assigned. This ensures there is a sense of comfort in the various members of a team about the jobs they are doing, which ultimately leads to better coordination.

    6. Improving productivity

    What are the two major qualities that separate reputed companies in the construction business, from the rest?

    Design variety and high quality work.

    Now keeping these two aspects in mind, you need work out how to improve productivity and at same time deliver high quality work.

    To boost efficiency and cut costs, you can reallocate a project's available resources. You need to come up with an approach wherein you can achieve the required results using the available resources.

    7. Developing good construction strategy

    Imagine completing a task without any access to the right materials or equipment.

    See, how difficult does that sounds!

    This is why effective project management boils down to having a systematic construction strategy in place. If the strategy is not scrutinized, then it undoubtedly is going to lead some trouble or other.

    8. Keeping on top of latest project management tools

    If there's one thing that's constantly and significantly increasing on a commercial construction site, its data.

    Yes, there is not just data but truckloads of data to be taken care of.

    Traditional software applications will have a tremendous amount of difficulty in processing such large amounts of data.This is where Cloud comes in. Cloud Storage helps storing digital data in logical pools.

    You also must get your hands on the best project management tools to make your life a little easier.

    The construction industry continues to grow and evolve. So keeping on top of the latest project management tools becomes top priority. If you intend to maximize project efficiency, retain valued customers and stand apart from your competition, then that's the way out.

    For example, let's say you are a construction company located in Anchorage, Alaska. If there is a specific tool that claims to optimize project management for Anchorage construction contractors, you must try that tool out.

    9. An agile mind works best

    Keeping in mind the working scenario in the commercial construction industry at present, it can undoubtedly be said that speed plays a significant role. Traditional practices of construction management are rapidly becoming obsolete. What you need is to be quick with your responses to rising issues and changes.

    Take a few minutes to reflect on your own approach towards management of commercial construction projects. Are you following all 9 of these tips? Are there are any another tips you wish to share? We are waiting to hear from you.

  • Dc
    20 Feb 2015 - 15:07 by Dc


    Last week, the Energy Department's SunShot Initiative launched the largest-of-its-kind, 60-day online hackathon to quickly build prototype solutions and products that address barriers to greater solar energy deployment and drive down the costs of solar energy. Approximately 700,000 coders, developers, and data scientists are expected to participate in this series of contests to build promising software prototypes to help more American families and businesses go solar.

    Read about the SunShot Catalyst Initiative here:

    Look for collaborators or join the conversation about this below.

  • Dc
    19 Feb 2015 - 15:08 by Dc

    Watch the video from here:

    Join the conversation below.

  • Dc
    17 Feb 2015 - 16:11 by Dc

    Read the article from here:

    Join the conversation below.

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