In the construction industry, businesses can save millions or even billions by reducing
inefficiencies related to labour. Systematic planning and management of labour through
an intelligent ERP for constructions can be a suitable remedy for improving labour
Impact of poor labour productivity
Engineering, Procurement, and construction (EPC) contractors and construction companies require labour services to complete various tasks. Software such as ERP for EPC contractors can help to estimate the exact labour requirement and fulfil the requirement adequately when a project goes live.
Inadequate labour planning leads to poor labour productivity.In such a scenario, here’s what will happen:
- Projects may get delayed as project managers are unable to match the project timelines.
- There will be a cost overrun if tasks are not completed on time.
- Adjusting labour factors will be difficult if an automated software to track and manage labour is not in place.
Let’s find out more about the possible factors that hamper labour productivity in the construction industry.
1) Working in hazardous areas
In certain projects, workers may have to wear safety gear and may have limited time to complete tasks in hazardous areas. The workers have to be trained and guided so that they perform the tasks correctly.
Inadequate safety training can lead to unnecessary hazards. Training and instructions will give confidence to the workers to improve critical tasks correctly in a safe manner. If they complete the task in a rush, the task will not be completed properly and another worker may have to be assigned to finish the work.
Whenever workers join a project, they should go through an orientation instead of directly getting to the work. If the orientation doesn’t take place, the worker will be unaware of where to look for tools, what is the workflow, etc. Also, if existing workers are moved to another site, their performance will be affected if they are not updated with the workflow of the new site.
3) Limited Supervision
On a construction site, there will be many workers working on various tasks. If enough supervisors are not available on site, then workers may not get enough attention. If workers have to wait for guidance or do not have someone to direct them in case of an issue on site, then productivity will be affected.
For example, if a supervisor is busy helping a team of workers with material procurement, the other workers who need help with a faulty tool will have to wait. Automation through ERP can solve some of the challenges for a supervising engineer. An automated ERP with materials management module can help the supervisor to manage material orders using a smartphone or tablet instead of wasting time co-ordinating for approvals and order placement.
Again, too many supervisors can also create an unhealthy work environment. Workers should be talking to a single supervisor for work assignments. For escalating issues, they should be able to contact the relevant project managers.
4) Holidays and breaks
Allow workers to take sufficient holidays and breaks so that they can rest well for the next day’s work. Some projects may have timelines which can make it difficult for project managers to give enough leaves to workers.
Planning the work in advance using an ERP for project-based business can help project managers to plan work schedules with enough holidays for workers. To accommodate workers who request additional holidays, project managers can use ERP software to move idle workers on other sites to fulfil the duties of the ones who are on leave.
5) Working in shifts
Sometimes, workers may be more comfortable working on day shifts if they have families. On the other hand, some workers may be comfortable with shifts as well as overtime if they need the extra pay. If workers are continuously made to work in undesirable work hours or forced to work overtime regularly, they may be demotivated and may not deliver optimum performance.
6) Weather conditions
Every project site will have its own challenges based on the external weather conditions such as heat, cold, rain or snow. Sufficient weather protection gear should be given to workers for helping them to work comfortably in extreme weather conditions.
Building a temporary shed for project work on a project site with scorching heat can allow workers to deliver better performance. Otherwise, they will be exhausted in no time and productivity will not be optimum.
Improve labour productivity through automation using one of the best construction management software. Explore OMNI ERP for construction-based businesses, visit