Major consideration in developing construction labour productivity standards in Zambia: a quantity surveyors perspective.

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Malipilo, Robby
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The University of Zambia
Recent studies have revealed that projects performance in Zambian Construction Industry is below satisfactory. Since labour is one of the key construction inputs, construction labour productivity is among the major determinants of projects’ success in ZCI. However, before making attempts to improve CLP, there is need to have CLP standards for consistent measurement, estimation and evaluation of CLP. Therefore, this study aimed at establishing the major considerations in developing CLP standards in Zambia. Literature was reviewed and questionnaires were administered to Contractors, Quantity Surveyor professional firms and statutory bodies. Probability and non-probability sampling techniques were used in selecting target groups and determine sample sizes. Information gathered was analysed using frequency tables, chai-square and regression test. The following were the study results: The reliability of CLP estimation and evaluation in ZCI was highly questionable as estimators rely on their individual experience and historical productivity data due to lack of CLP standards. Major considerations in developing CLP standards in Zambia include; major resources required for optimal CLP (labour, materials and tools/equipment) and factors related to work, workers and management that influence CLP. Further, the process of CLP standards development can be initiated by government bodies or other relevant stakeholders and would require the formulation of Standard Development Technical Committee to conduct the consultative process. As such, the following recommendations were made: The process of CLP standards development in Zambia should be facilitated by Zambia Bureau of Standards as the mandated statutory body. SDTC must conduct detailed studies on factors that influence CLP in ZCI and must employ the principle of averaging to ascertain ideal CLP rates as standards. Stakeholders or experts from various sectors must be adequately represented in SDTC for CLP standards development in Zambia. Government should consider financing the development and publication of CLP standards in Zambia. If successfully developed, CLP standards must be reviewed periodically so as to ascertain the need for revision at any particular time.
Thesis of Master of Engineering Degree in Construction Management.