I have been using multiple years of the Building Construction Cost Data to look at the productivity information for various activity items.

My first question is how do you decide what the "daily output" and "labor-hours" for each activity is?

My second question is how do you decide if and when the "daily output" and "labor-hours" should be changed from year to year? Perhaps there is additional information in one of your reference or methodology books?

Thank you in advance for your assistance.

Stephanie Vereen,
Graduate Student, North Carolina State University


The Daily Output comes from multiple sources:

  • Information provided by vendors.
  • Information provided by contractors.
  • Actual field observations / measurements
  • RSMeans engineers experience

“Labor hours” represent the mathematical quotient obtained by dividing the total hours per day for the crew by the daily output.

“Daily output” and subsequently “labor hours” will only change if one or more of the following conditions are met:

  • The size of the crew changes.
  • Some new procedure or process involved in the installation changes the amount of work the crew can perform in one day.
  • A new tool or piece of equipment changes the installation process.
  • A safety or health requirement changes the installation process.

Good luck with your studies.

Bob Mewis
RSMeans Engineering Department, Director of Engineering

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