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Time delays on construction sites

Construction is an industry that has long been criticized for its low productivity levels, high costs of rework, and traditional command and control approach to job site coordination and planning. Despite numerous reports highlighting the need for improvement in the industry, such as Sir John Egan's "Rethinking Construction" and the McKinsey Productivity Imperative Report, data suggests that little has changed.

A recent international study found that the direct costs of avoidable errors in construction projects can be as high as 5% of the project value. This can be particularly detrimental to construction companies in the UK, where average profit levels are just 3%. To address these issues and move towards a more high-performance culture, construction companies can implement several practical measures.

These include embracing digital transformation through the use of technologies like digital twins and autonomous plant, adopting modern methods of construction such as prefabrication and onsite assembly, and implementing outcome-focused project delivery models like Project13, which emphasizes risk/reward commercial incentives and value-based procurement.

In the shorter term, construction companies can also focus on three specific strategies to reduce rework and improve job site productivity: making problem finding a celebrated behavior, using short interval control to drive short interval learning, and implementing process confirmation to prevent process errors in the future.

By creating a culture that values continuous improvement, regularly reviewing and adjusting processes, and paying close attention to quality, construction companies can significantly reduce rework costs and improve their overall performance.


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