Nelson Bustamante: Best Practices in Construction – The Constructor

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What is Best Practice in Construction

Best practices in construction encompass the standard and meticulously planned approaches followed within the construction industry to ensure optimal outcomes and profitability. These practices may take the form of policies, procedures, or comprehensive systems implemented during specific periods.

Over the past decade, the construction landscape has undergone significant changes, with the emergence of new technologies and evolving project procurement and management methodologies.

Importance of Following Best Practices in Construction

The construction industry stands as one of the largest and most vital sectors of the economy, employing over 7% of the workforce and driving significant national investment, valued at $300 billion. According to a study by BERL, a 10% efficiency gain in this sector translates to a 1% increase in GDP.

10 Best Business Practices in Construction

  1. Procurement
  2. Partnering
  3. Risk Management
  4. Value Management
  5. Benchmarking
  6. Supply Chain Management
  7. Whole Life Costing
  8. Health and Safety
  9. Lean Construction
  10. Sustainable Construction

 1. Procurement

  • Procurement practices involve:
    • Selecting the appropriate method for construction management.
    • Choosing the best team for design, delivery, and operation of the facility.
    • Contracting with a focus on lowest price tendering and lump sum contracts.

2. Partnering

  • Partnering entails a collaborative approach to working, which has been proven to yield:
    • Greater value for money.
    • Increased profits for the company.
    • Quality improvement.
    • Predictability of project completion.

3. Risk Management

  • Risk management involves maintaining a “risk register” to track and manage risks encountered throughout a project’s lifecycle. Regular risk assessment and analysis are crucial, with financial allowances allocated for residual risk items.

4. Value Management

  • Value management considers time, cost, and risk constraints to meet clients’ business needs. This practice emphasizes collaboration among the project team, including end-users and stakeholders, to identify and evaluate options that satisfy client requirements.

5. Benchmarking

  • Benchmarking compares the performance of completed projects to improve the performance of future projects systematically. It focuses on critical issues such as environment, time, cost, quality, safety, productivity, and profitability.

6. Supply Chain Management in Construction

  • Supply chain management in construction involves integrating all operations associated with delivering a product or service, from primary producers to end-users. Effective supply chain management fosters cost savings and value improvement, requiring both operational and management practices.

7. Whole Life Costing

  • Whole life costing measures the total cost of ownership of a building, including initial capital cost, maintenance, and servicing expenses. This practice acknowledges that maintenance costs often exceed initial capital costs and is crucial for informed decision-making.

8. Health and Safety in Construction

  • Health and safety practices in construction prioritize protecting workers’ rights and ensuring effective planning and management of construction sites to enhance productivity and profitability. Proper planning, training, supervision, and provision of necessary equipment are essential.

9. Lean Construction Practice

  • Lean construction aims to reduce or eliminate processes that add costs while prioritizing value. The five main principles of lean construction include specifying value from the customer’s perspective, identifying and integrating value-delivering processes, producing only what is required when it is required, striving for continuous improvement, and allowing value to flow without disruption.

10. Sustainable Construction

  • Sustainable construction focuses on enhancing social, economic, and environmental performance within the industry. Practices include maximizing profits, delivering buildings with greater satisfaction and value, ensuring fair treatment of employees, minimizing waste and pollution, and promoting energy-efficient buildings powered by renewable resources.
Sustainable Construction
Fig.1:Sustainable Construction (Image Courtesy:Mixbrow Construction)


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