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Project Manager and Project Managers Assistant's Typical Rolls

Project Manager and Project Managers Assistant's Typical Rolls

Complementary tasks between a Disaster Restoration Project Manager and their Assistant...... I have been fortunate to be part of this fantastic yet challenging industry for almost 2 decades, as a technician and a textile restorer in our family business and the last 12 years being a Project Manager. I've obviously had ups and downs and along with that, there has been many learning curves. I've been fortunate enough to learn from some of the best project managers in the industry as well as some of the most organized and efficient project manager assistants. (PMA) Throughout this time I've TRIED/TESTED as well as observed many different systems. Some have come and gone while others have stood the test of time. Obviously those ones being universal and effective. The Restoration Project Manager role has changed a Fair amount over the last few years. (More of a sales person now) The typical role in the Project Manager in Disaster Restoration......

  • obtaining the job,
  • assessing the damage that has occurred on the job site,
  • providing mitigation protocol to the required crew members,
  • structuring and compiling specific emergency and rebuild specs that are formatted in a way acceptable to the specific insurance company and or adjusting firm.
  • Throughout the course of the mitigation phase, the Project Manager was to obtain the necessary 'job specific' subtrade quotes and upon receipt, build the specs to be sent to the adjuster for approval
  • Once the approval has been obtained, the Project Manager moves ahead with obtaining approval from the homeowner to proceed
  • notifying the sub trades that they have been approved to begin and start the schedule related to the rebuilt specs.
  • Throughout the course of the rebuild process there also will more than likely be deficiencies which will require the project manager to attend, assess who would be most likely candidate to return to the site in order to correct the deficiency as per required scope.
  • Once the scope of work is being completed then the project manager is then required to have the homeowner sign off on the claim related work. Now that all documentation and scope of works are deemed completed,
  • The final process would be to send the final repair invoice with all supporting documents to the insurance adjuster
  • close your file pending payment and wait for cheques to be issued and received from insurance company.
  • The proceeding is not universal in the way that the Project Manager performs their scope of work or employment responsibilities, it is for the most part, the correct flow.Although this is a typical workflow for a Project Manager in Disaster Restoration, once the workload or volume of work exceeds an acceptable threshold, there would be a need for assistance in order to fulfill the required workflow to complete an insurance claim successfully. This would require a Project Manager Assistant or PMATypical role of a Project Manager Assistant or PMA Usually the assistant would be complementary to either the project manager's personality or strengths/weaknesses.I have found that if a PMA has the same strengths as the PM then that role isn't quite as complementary. Whereas if the PMA has strengths that complement the weaknesses of the PM, then strategic goals of opening and closing the insurance claims are achieved more successfully.How could the PM utilize strengths of their PMA? Now that Xactimate is an industry-standard, it would be more efficient if the PMA was

    to obtain sketch
    a detailed scope, sketch and photo package from the PM in order to compose the specs at the office while the project manager is left to be mobile going site to site.

    photo from xactware That documentation can be compiled on site digitally and then emailed or uploaded via software so it can be obtained by the PMA. Once the project manager returns to the office for to his home base office, they can review the scope and drawing in order to ensure the accuracy of the actual work to be performed on the job site.


    The PMA also collects who the PM would like to see regarding sub-trades on the site and obtain necessary quotes from each sub trade. This also would include ensuring flooring samples are collected and sent to the appropriate analyzing firm. Once the approval has been obtained from the insurance adjuster, both the PM and assistant can go over the
  • Scope of work
  • Sub trades required to fulfill the tasks
  • Observe the photo package in order to organize an efficient schedule of repairs and notify some trades accordingly.
  • Issue Purchase orders or PO's
  • Throughout the course of the repair process the PMA can follow up with the homeowner to ensure their updated and notified as to which sub-trades will be entering their home
  • Keep in close contact with all sub trades and updating the schedule if a delay is occurring and/or is ahead of schedule
  • Issuing change orders outside of claim related work
  • If there is any major concerns then the PMA can notify the PM so they can either contact the homeowner themselves or the adjuster so that all information is documented and kept on track or issues resolved.

As you can tell the Project Manager Assistant is a vital role to how the claims procedure is flowing efficiently and more cost-effective. Communication is the most important part of this role and I've noticed that as a Project Manager we are on the road as well as in so many meetings that there is documentation and/or communication that is lost in the process. So heavily relying on the PMA is vital. This definitely is not the 'end all be all' for the Project Manager and PMA relationship, but it can definitely be a stepping stone to helping you find your own way as you journey in this exciting and challenging career in the Disaster Restoration Industry. Hope this has been helpful in any way

darren miller
Darren Miller

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