Is the productivity of BIM planning teams measurable?

Every entrepreneur wonders if his company, his teams and his employees work productively. The majority then ask the question „How can I measure productivity?“. As a rule, the measurement of productivity is based on the subjective assessment of project managers or department heads. Who then checks the productivity of this management level and if so how? We need neutral and objective metrics that, day by day and week by week, incorporate uncompromising and transparent teams to identify productivity and give teams the opportunity to talk about their achievements and then take measures together to increase productivity.

First, we need to clarify whether we want to measure the productivity of planning teams at all. Productivity is required in all areas of professional life. Man, generally tends not to stand up against productivity, but rather to quietly escape this topic. Because if it is not noticeable, everyone assumes that everyone works productively. Companies will earn a profit if your employees are productive.

But that does not mean that there should be a merciless exploitation. Productivity can also be measured by a promise to have a certain task done in a certain time. The time itself then comes from the employee. He should be measured by his own promise. In planning teams, every planner is a link in a chain. If one does not comply with his own commitment, the subsequent planner has a problem with his own pledge.

In the past workings of teams, it is not always so. If we are now looking at BIM projects and BIM planning teams, it is the task of the BIM Manager to support, promote and improve a transparent and cooperative work of the planning team. So basically, increase the productivity of the team. To increase productivity, however, I must first measure productivity. Said, done, but how?

The following charts give us an insight into a transparent, cooperative and digital collaboration of a BIM planning team. Every team member can view the charts at any time. The work of all team members is documented. The team also includes the BIM manager of the project, the BIM coordinator and the BIM manager of the client.

What lessons can we draw from the three charts?

The BIM project has only recently begun on 5th June. Today is June 17th. The project is by no means finished. The statements always correspond to the currently planned workdays and the planning services provided so far. The actual graphical project board contains all the milestones and all tasks that are in the field of rough planning and fine-tuning. Each task passes through all necessary process steps of the BIM project. At the same time, individual project structure plans are used, in which the tasks are displayed visually day by day.

The BIM project currently contains 35 working days in the weekly planning. The work is to be reduced according to the green line in the „Working Time Burn-Down Chart“ due to the joint team planning. Until June 17, several working days, presented as a blue area, have already been completed.

Conclusions: The upper edge of the blue surface coincides with the green curve. The team’s timelines and the time spent in the game are 100% matched. The team can assess their own performance well. The team works productively. This chart is now available for the entire team. You can also create a chart for each team member. This allows you to determine whether a scheduler was faster and another scheduler slower. In sum, it would be canceled.

In this „Working Time Flow“ chart, you can see what the team has done per day. On the weekends, no work is planned and nothing has been done.

Conclusions: The statements are consistent with those from the first chart.

The „Planned Percent Complete“ chart once again underpins a simple figure as the team completed the entire week.

Conclusions in general: If the blue area is permanently above the green line, the BIM Manager should, in a joint meeting, ask all team members to reflect and correct their time promises for the next days. All thoughts about the implications of the BIM project must be considered. If the blue areas are always below the green line, it is positive. But then the question arises whether the BIM team could be even more productive and possibly reduce the time. Then the milestones of the project could be reached earlier. Theoretically, construction work can also be started earlier.

How do I make the team even more productive now?

In the BEP BIM Execution Plan, milestones were defined and the planning periods were roughly estimated. If the team works well together, the daily tasks may be more closely interlaced and interlaced during the weekly planning. It is only when the team has measured its productivity that it can make a statement about how it can increase together. The decisive word is „together“. Only if everyone voluntarily participates can productivity be increased. The motivation weighs on the shoulders of the BIM manager. The best motivation is still to convince through his own work and so take the others with him.

The strategy behind this work is called DLSP Digital Last Planner System. It has four important advantages over the LPS Last Planner System:

  • The BIM Manager can react even more quickly to unexpected situations during the planning or construction phase than when one meets the whiteboard once a week.
  • The spatial limitation of project teams can be lifted. The meetings can be carried out digitally. This reduces the travel costs and the time losses.
  • The number of meetings can be reduced if the project is productive.
  • The meetings are more efficient because everyone knows the current status quo of the project before the meeting. The discussion is reduced to the contentious and critical points of the project.

If you are interested in the Digital Last Planner System, I would like to show you how it works. Please send me a request by e-mail: ulf.krause@avacad.eu

Afterword: We all want to be more productive with less effort, with less stress and with more fun at work. Or are you one of those who do not want it?

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