Impacted Productivity - Stacking of Trades

Each crafts person needs about 200 of usable square feet for a productive installation.

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This assumption is included in production units used by all contractors to estimate, budget and track their projects.  Having less usable working space can impact productivity by up to 50%.  

Field Productivity: Impacts - Stacking of Trades and Installation Efficiency.

It is critical to understand when the worker density gets too high, why it got there and how to quantify the impact to production. 

  • 200 usable square feet is about a 14x14 room.  Stock that room with HVAC duct or sheetrock right in the middle and you no longer have a normal production situation.  That is a schedule sequencing issue.
  • Some areas such as mechanical rooms were designed to not have 200 usable square feet.  That should be addressed at the estimating and budgeting stage of the project.  
  • Other times you have naturally congested areas like a hallway and due to schedule compression you may find multiple trades working in the same area increasing worker density while lowering usable square feet and productivity.  

FIGHTING BACK

  1. Know how to quantify the impact. Most trades in a building will be impacted in a similar way so studies for one trade are often very applicable once you get past the terminology.  
  2. Proactively manage the schedule to ensure your crews have clear work areas.  Often the cost of overtime or shift work is less than the impact of congested work areas.  
  3. Innovative and aggressive use of prefabrication can shift a lot of the labor hours to another time and place minimizing the impact. 

Improving Labor Productivity Workshop


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