Our Process

Pre-construction services

1. Budget estimates

Sterling project team members will prepare an initial budget estimate with as much detail as possible using the documents provided by the client. During the development process, updated estimates will be produced and subcontractors will be engaged to provide detailed quotations. Multiple estimates are typically prepared as line items are specifically identified.

At a minimum, a budget will be established, preliminary bid estimates will be generated prior to the final GMP (guaranteed maximum price) proposal. No construction activities will begin if the scope of all work does not fall within the approved budget.

2. Design modifications

Sterling will seek to understand the client’s design team guidelines, and will be diligent in suggesting alternative solutions that can save time and money. Sterling sub-contractors will also be encouraged to participate in this process. Items requiring special or early purchases will be identified and alternatives considered.

3. Contingencies

Sterling will recommend project contingencies and allowances during the development process. These contingencies will be discussed and refined as the project develops.  Unused contingencies are returned to the client.

4. Preliminary schedule

During the estimating process, Sterling will develop a preliminary schedule that is consistent with the needs and desires of the client. Suggestions regarding phasing and time saving activities will be presented and discussed. It is anticipated that multiple scheduling revisions will be completed until Sterling and the client are satisfied the job can be executed properly within the time ranges specified.


Sterling completes a comprehensive project materials survey prior to the bid process. All sub-contractor and supplier purchase orders are coordinated and selections authorized by the Sterling project manager. Payment and performance bonds may be requested from sub-contractors depending on risk factors. Project superintendents are authorized to make minor material purchases in the field to keep construction progressing.

Document Control

The importance of maintaining an accurate “paper trail” is the guiding force in Sterling’s document control system. Verbal instructions must be documented and logged into the system within 24 hours. Photographs are taken to document each project, from start to finish.

It is the Sterling project manager’s responsibility to expedite, coordinate, review and maintain all documents related to a project, and to obtain document approval of the owner’s representatives in a timely manner.

Project superintendents are equipped with iphones, laptop computers and internet access, allowing document changes to be viewed and verified from the Sterling headquarters or jobsite location.

Quality Control

Once the detailed construction plan is approved and work on a project begins, responsibility for maintaining “True to plan” progress falls to the Sterling project superintendent. This individual schedules and conducts pre-installation conferences with all sub-contractors to ensure proper installation of products and materials according to the design specifications. During the pre-installation meeting, staging and storage areas will be identified, and security issues addressed.

The Sterling project superintendent issues daily reports describing progress made and problems encountered, including concerns raised by owners representatives or sub-contractors (if any). All field personnel carry push-to-talk mobile radios and have access to the Internet via on-site computers.

Weekly project team meetings are held to discuss progress versus the work schedule. These meetings are attended by all members of the Sterling project team, including the owners.  The site is normally walked with Sterling and owners representatives, and any concerns or problems are addressed quickly.