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Article
Publication date: 9 November 2012

Ping Yung and George Agyekum‐Mensah

This paper aims to examine the extent of productivity losses in smoking breaks on construction sites.

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the extent of productivity losses in smoking breaks on construction sites.

Design/methodology/approach

The smoking behaviours of workers in a small/medium‐sized construction company were examined for a period of four months. Construction workers were targeted due to their higher prevalence in smoking. The exact time losses through smoking breaks were measured and calculated. The productivity losses were then evaluated and compared with the estimates of productivity losses and wage penalties found in the literature.

Findings

It is found that a smoker on average smokes 5.6 cigarettes, which takes a total of 73 minutes, representing 15.2 per cent of productivity loss in an eight‐hour shift. This productivity loss is much higher than productivity losses through increased sick leaves or the wage penalties for smokers found in the literature.

Research limitations/implications

Variations of smoking behaviours throughout the year have not been considered. The study has focused on a renovation and rehabilitation project, it has not considered the workers from other trades who might have different smoking behaviours.

Originality/value

This paper is a contribution to the limited literature on the productive time losses through smoking breaks. Most studies on productive time loss attributable to smoking focused on the additional sick leaves taken by the smokers, without realizing that productive time losses through smoking breaks far exceeds those additional sick leaves.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. 19 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 1 January 2013

Ryspek Usubamatov, Abdul Rahman Riza and Muhamad Nasir Murad

The purpose of this paper is to study and perform a system analysis of car assembly line processes, to show productivity losses and their causes, and to derive a…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to study and perform a system analysis of car assembly line processes, to show productivity losses and their causes, and to derive a mathematical model of the productivity rate of the assembly line.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper performs productivity calculations based on data obtained from the assembly processes of a car cabin and shows the losses of productivity and their causes. The equations of the assembly line productivity rate and the optimal number of assembly stations are derived by the criterion of maximum productivity.

Findings

The paper provides a productivity diagram that illustrates various productivity losses and their associated causes together with the output of car assembly processes. The diagram is based on proposed mathematical calculations. It is a derived analytical model of the productivity rate of the assembly line as a function of the assembly technology, number of stations, reliability of machine and mechanisms, as well as managerial and organizational factors.

Research limitations/implications

Solutions to decrease the productivity losses of the assembly line are given based on the results of the study and analysis of the assembly processes in real industrial environments.

Practical implications

The paper includes implications of the methodology used in the investigation of the productivity of the assembly line, and the equation of the productivity rate, which allows for the calculation of maximum productivity and the optimal number of assembly stations.

Originality/value

The paper presents a method of analysis of the productivity and a mathematical model for calculating the productivity rate of the assembly line. The results of the research are obtained from a real industrial environment.

Details

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, vol. 24 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-038X

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Article
Publication date: 13 October 2021

Jae-Seob Lee

The purpose of the paper is to develop a method to integrate the schedule-based analysis with a productivity-based analysis to prove and support the result of the damages…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of the paper is to develop a method to integrate the schedule-based analysis with a productivity-based analysis to prove and support the result of the damages calculation.

Design/methodology/approach

In this paper, a “cost and schedule impact integration” (CSI2) model is proposed to objectively show and estimate lost productivity due to changes in construction projects.

Findings

A schedule-based analysis to include separate tracking of change order costs can be used to predict productivity due to the delay and disruption; changes in construction projects almost always result in delay and disruption. However, the schedule-based analysis needs to be integrated with a productivity-based analysis to prove and support the result of the damages calculation.

Practical implications

The results of this study expand upon construction practices for proving and quantifying lost productivity due to changes in construction projects.

Originality/value

The contribution of the paper is summarized as the introduction of a “schedule impact analysis” into a “cost impact analysis” technique to assess the damages, as well as to demonstrate the labor productivity impact due to delay and disruption in construction projects.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 6 May 2014

Orlando Gomes

The purpose of this paper is to study the growth dynamics in a model where labor productivity is shaped by two forces. On one hand, it is determined by the extent in which…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to study the growth dynamics in a model where labor productivity is shaped by two forces. On one hand, it is determined by the extent in which available technology has been already explored. On the other hand, some labor skills may become obsolete, jeopardizing the ability of the labor input in creating value, namely when a transition between technological states takes place.

Design/methodology/approach

A theoretical model is developed, based on previous work about hierarchical organizations of production, in order to build an integrated structure of analysis for growth, productivity, innovation and obsolescence of skills.

Findings

In a setting in which output grows through the accumulation of layers of activity, the generation of income and the evolution of techniques will be determined by the choice of a representative agent, who faces a trade-off between consumption utility and the desire to maintain intact the skills of the labor force.

Research limitations/implications

The theory provides an analytical structure to think about skill acquisition and skill obsolescence in the context of economic growth. Further work is necessary, namely at an empirical level, to test the validity and the reasonability of the model's implications.

Originality/value

The paper sheds light on the role of labor productivity as a growth determinant. It seeks a deeper understanding on the relationship between human capabilities and the efficient use of technology.

Details

Journal of Economic Studies, vol. 41 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-3585

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 6 September 2021

Robert Larsson and Martin Rudberg

This paper aims to study the effects of different weather conditions on typical concrete work tasks’ productivity. Weather is one important factor that has a negative…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to study the effects of different weather conditions on typical concrete work tasks’ productivity. Weather is one important factor that has a negative impact on construction productivity. Knowledge about how weather affects construction works is therefore important for the construction industry, e.g. during planning and execution of construction projects.

Design/methodology/approach

A questionnaire survey method is used involving means to perform pairwise comparisons of different weather factors according to the analytical hierarchical process (AHP). The survey also contains means to enable assessment of the loss in productivity for typical work tasks exposed to different weather types. The survey targets practitioners involved in Swedish concrete construction projects, and the results are compared with previous research findings.

Findings

The survey covers responses from 232 practitioners with long experience of concrete construction. The pairwise comparisons reveal that practitioners rank precipitation as the most important followed by wind and temperature. The loss in productivity varies significantly (from 0 to 100%) depending on the type of work and the type of weather factor considered. The results partly confirm findings reported in previous research but also reveal a more complex relationship between weather and productivity indicating several underlying influencing factors such as type of work, type of weather (e.g. rain or snow) and the intensity of each weather factor.

Originality/value

This paper presents new data about how 232 practitioners assess the effects of weather on construction productivity involving novel means to perform objective rankings such as the AHP methodology.

Details

Construction Innovation , vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1471-4175

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Article
Publication date: 22 July 2019

Ammar Saeed Mohammed Moohialdin, Fiona Lamari, Marc Miska and Bambang Trigunarsyah

The purpose of this paper shows the effect of hot and humid weather conditions (HHWCs) on workers that has resulted in considerable loss in the construction industry…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper shows the effect of hot and humid weather conditions (HHWCs) on workers that has resulted in considerable loss in the construction industry, especially during the hottest periods due to decline in worker productivity (WP). Until the last few decades, there is very limited research on construction WP in HHWCs. Nevertheless, these studies have sparked interests on seeking for the most appropriate methods to assess the impact of HHWCs on construction workers.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper begins by reviewing the current measuring methods on WP in HHWCs, follows by presenting the potential impact of HHWCs on WP. The paper highlights the methodological deficiencies, which consequently provides a platform for scholars and practitioners to direct future research to resolve the significant productivity loss due to global warming. This paper highlights the need to identify the limitations and advantages of the current methods to formulate a framework of new approaches to measure the WP in HHWCs.

Findings

Results show that the methods used in providing real-time response on the effects of HHWCs on WP in construction at project, task and crew levels are limited. An integration of nonintrusive real-time monitoring system and local weather measurement with real-time data synchronisation and analysis is required to produce suitable information to determine worker health- and safety-related decisions in HHWCs.

Originality/value

The comprehensive literature review makes an original contribution to WP measurements filed in HHWCs in the construction industry. Results of this review provide researchers and practitioners with an insight into challenges associated with the measurements methods and solving practical site measurements issues. The findings will also enable the researchers and practitioners to bridge the identified research gaps in this research field and enhance the ability to provide accurate measures in HHWCs. The proposed research framework may promote potential improvements in the productivity measurements methods, which support researchers and practitioners in developing new innovative methods in HHWCs with the integration of the most recent monitoring technologies.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. 27 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 17 September 2019

Marina Macedo de Abreu and Alberto Casado Lordsleem Jr

The purpose of this paper is to establish and evaluate the concrete loss and labor productivity (LP) indicators in the concreting step of aluminum formwork system (AFS) in…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to establish and evaluate the concrete loss and labor productivity (LP) indicators in the concreting step of aluminum formwork system (AFS) in construction in Brazil. The loss and productivity indicators are directed to a regional database (Pernambuco, Brazil).

Design/methodology/approach

Case study was selected as the most appropriate approach. The methodology included data collection in the construction project with 10 residential towers of 320 apartments, in the city of Jaboatão dos Guararapes, Brazil, throughout 82 concrete pouring days using 415 concrete mixer trucks, with a total of 2,582.50 m3 of concrete.

Findings

The findings identified an average concrete loss of 2.6 percent and the LP indicator varying between 0.15 and 0.97 WH/m3. It could be verified that the loss indicators were influenced mainly by the learning effect associated to the qualification of the labor. In addition, the productivity indicators were strongly influenced by delays at the beginning of the concrete pouring and by problems coming from the sequence of concrete supply.

Originality/value

LP indicators are still literature restricted, especially considering only the concreting step. The direct observations of this study allow the identification of factors that inhibit productivity. The comparison of indicators for the concreting service between the ASF and the conventional system attests to the speed, low cost and efficiency of the system studied in this paper.

Details

Built Environment Project and Asset Management, vol. 9 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2044-124X

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Article
Publication date: 8 February 2016

Jeremiah Chinnadurai, Vidhya Venugopal, Kumaravel P and Paramesh R

Raise in temperatures due to climate change is likely to increase the heat stress in occupations that are physically exerting and performed outdoors which might…

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1235

Abstract

Purpose

Raise in temperatures due to climate change is likely to increase the heat stress in occupations that are physically exerting and performed outdoors which might potentially have adverse health and productivity consequences. The purpose of this paper is to estimate the productivities in construction work under the influence of heat stress using the predicted mean vote (PMV) index.

Design/methodology/approach

Field studies were conducted during May 2014 which is summer time in Chennai. Continuous heart rate of workers and wet bulb globe temperature measurements are conducted for workers engaged in different jobs in construction. Metabolic rates and the workload of the workers from heart rate were calculated using the ISO method 8996 and the PMV values are calculated using the tool developed by Malchaire based on the method ISO 7730. Direct observations and personal interviews were conducted to substantiate the productivity estimations.

Findings

The results showed that workers working outdoors with moderate and heavy workload exceeded the threshold limit value of 28°C and had adverse productivity impacts (18-35 per cent productivity loss), whereas the workers engaged in light indoor work was not affected by heat stress and consequent productivity losses. The productivity estimations using the PMV index is found to be statistically significant for three types of construction works (Pearson correlation coefficient value of −0.78) and also correlated well with the observations and self-reported productivities of the workers.

Originality/value

The method used in this paper provides a scientific and reliable estimation of the productivities which may benefit the industry to set realistic project completion goals in hot weather and also implement interventions and policies to protect workers’ health. Developing adaptive strategies and implementing control measures are the need of the hour to protect worker’s health and economic losses in the face of climate change.

Details

International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, vol. 65 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0401

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Article
Publication date: 10 April 2017

Sara Hajikazemi, Bjørn Andersen and Jan Alexander Langlo

The construction industry is a labor-intensive industry, hence, the presence of labor with high productivity at each stage of the project plays a significant role in…

Abstract

Purpose

The construction industry is a labor-intensive industry, hence, the presence of labor with high productivity at each stage of the project plays a significant role in achieving project success. The purpose of this paper is to provide real-life empirical data about the current level of construction productivity, in this case electrical installation work, within construction projects in Norway. In addition, it was of interest to identify the areas which have the highest potential for improvement of labor productivity.

Design/methodology/approach

This study considers the construction labor productivity through an elaboration on productive vs unproductive time within construction projects. It is based on a “frequency study” done on eight construction projects in Norway. The “work sampling” method has been used for collection of empirical data. For each project, four electricians were observed an entire working day and the amount of time they spent on performing each activity was recorded every 60th seconds. The activities observed were based on a predefined set of activities.

Findings

The results of the observations show that on average, 61.1 percent of the time was direct value-added work. This number is significantly better than what is normally discussed as being productive time. However, the findings also show that there is still potential for improvement. The activities that have the highest potential for improvement include “material transfer,” “amendments to already executed installation,” “personal needs” and “waiting times.”

Practical implications

The study results will be of immense benefit to managers of construction projects as well as managers of construction organizations in enhancing their project performance and productivity.

Originality/value

This paper contributes both theoretically and empirically to the current discussion and findings on labor productivity and its relation to project success. The results presented in this paper have important implications of labor productivity in construction projects and future studies in the area of project performance.

Details

International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, vol. 66 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0401

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Book part
Publication date: 15 November 2021

Stephen Bevan and Cary L. Cooper

Abstract

Details

The Healthy Workforce
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-499-1

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