Engineering projects come with budgets. You are supposed to ensure that every engineering project you work on is completed within the budget. But this is not always easy. Unexpected costs keep on creeping, threatening to knock you off the budget. Furthermore, things often cost much more than anticipated, threatening to knock you further off the budget. Generally, in all engineering projects, it is very hard to come up with cost estimates that are entirely accurate. It is also very hard to think of all the costs that are likely to be incurred in the cost of an engineering project. For instance, it may be hard to foresee a situation where it rains in the course of an engineering project, forcing you to pump water out of the project site. Or it may be hard to foresee a situation where the engineering project coincides with a severe drought, forcing you to buy water in a bowser, just to keep the engineering project going on.
There are nonetheless some things you can do to ensure that you complete an engineering project within the budget.
- Ensure that the budget is realistic, to start out with.
- Include a provision for contingencies in the budget.
- Manage the project finances properly.
The last bit, on managing the project finances properly, deserves special attention. You need to create a system to ensure that all monies that are disbursed in the course of the engineering project are well accounted for. You may need to set up a voucher system, and ensure that the people signing for the vouchers are willing to be surcharged in case the money is not spent properly. You may even need to hire a finance professional, to help you get the engineering project(s) you are working on completed within the budgets. True, the finance professional will be costly to maintain (in terms of salary, allowances and so on). Yet he can help you save much more money, and get the engineering projects you are working on completed within the budget(s).