Potential Sources of Construction Inefficiency
Let’s talk about the potential sources of inefficiency. There are many. They can include, but are not limited to:
- Extended periods of overtime
- Unanticipated inclement weather
- Revised means or methods instituted to overcome a delay (owner or contractor caused)
- The experience (also called learning) curve of each operation, you don’t always achieve the planned level of productivity on day one
- Equipment breakdowns
- Additional shifts (requiring additional labor and, potentially, additional management and coordination)
- The number, magnitude, and timing of changes
- Labor shortages (the contractor might be unable to obtain the required level of skilled labor)
- Poor management
- Site conditions and site access (differing site conditions or lack of access to the project)
- Increase or decrease in crew size
- Site organization or access (a contractor’s productivity may be reduced because the owner did not provide the contractor with access to the project site as stated in the contract)
- Trade stacking
- Erroneous or ambiguous drawings or specifications
- Out-of-sequence work
As you can see, there are many potential factors that could cause the contractor’s operation to be less efficient.
When we talk about inefficiency, the party responsible could be the owner, the contractor, or a third party. Therefore, understanding the reason for the contractor’s lost productivity and the party responsible determines whether the contractor will be entitled to additional compensation for the inefficient operation.
Mark Nagata is a Director/Shareholder of TRAUNER and is an expert in the areas of critical path method scheduling, delay and inefficiency analysis, and construction claim preparation and evaluation. He loves to get questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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