3 Causes of Construction Rework & How To Reduce

Construction sector is one of the complex sector which has a lot of activities going on simultaneously. It is a sector which can be termed as growing. But there are certain hurdles to this sector which could lead to disruption in the construction work at any of the site, especially if it is concerned with a major project. If anyone has visited the construction site then they would understand what a complex environment it is wherein people such as traders, suppliers, laborers, supervisors are all working simultaneously but with a different business goal or objective in their mind. In such an environment where there are so many people involved, there are bound to be mistakes or errors.


The rework which is caused in such an industry is always messy and is termed as an unspoken secret. Such reworks had a great impact on the construction sector and their various projects. There has been an estimate that rework carried out in construction projects have cost almost 15 percent of the contract value. It cannot be termed as a small value; this leads to a big hit on the revenue.

As per one of the studies, the rework of an existing site adds upto 10 to 15 percent to the overall cost of the construction mostly concerned with major projects.

The main causes of construction rework can be attributed to the below factors:

Engineering and reviews:

  • Poor form of documentation control
  • Submission of late designs or if there are any changes in the design then it can also delay the process
  • Errors and omission in some form or the other
  • Scope of changes

Planning of construction and the scheduling part:

  • Improper planning leading to delay in owner’s input
  • Setting up schedules which are unrealistic
  • Specifications which are setup, the management or the employees dealing with the project do not comply with them.
  • Materials when needed are not available leading to delay in carrying out further task

Leadership and communications:

  • Lack of communication among the juniors and the supervisors or as per the hierarchy
  • No proper safety measures included at the site of construction leading to accidental issues
  • Inefficiency in the management of the team relating to the project
  • Lack of operations to the end user

Supply of equipment’s and materials:

  • Delay in delivery of materials or equipment’s
  • The materials or equipment’s are not as per the specific compliance
  • Schedules set for the equipment and the materials are not realistic
  • Delay in the designer input
  • Problems relating to constructability
  • Improper or insufficient turnover.

Capability of human resource:

  • Lack of skilled employees or labor
  • No clear instructions given to workers leading to miscommunication
  • Long gaps in the break time or increase in the over time
  • Lack of proper supervision at the work site leading to increase in the errors


In order to reduce these errors and rework, the main idea is to first identify what is the root cause of these reworks or from where it is happening. Many analysts have advised that the rework is often due to the complexity characteristic of the various processes in the construction sector.

Begin with constructible models: First and foremost, one should address the issue of rework at the design phase itself. From the beginning of the project ensure that one is working on buildable models. When one talks about constructible or buildable models it would contain all the detailed elements which are very much required to build in the correct geometric position of the construction. The model should be realistic wherein it should contain all the detailed element efficiently and effectively of converting the model into a reality. It is very much easier to fix the errors or mistakes which happen in a virtual model of a construction building rather than getting it fixed on the actual building which would turn out to be a big rework costing lots of expenses. Always ensure that the project is virtually designed using a good software. The model which is prepared should include models from all the areas such as electrical, structural and any other areas as well. With the help of Virtual Design and Construction, it would ensure that any grey areas of the project would be highlighted along with any clashes or differences. This is better until the project is in the design phase. Reworks at this level can save a lot of costly work rather than ignoring any such mistakes at the virtual stage itself.

Conveying the virtual model on site: Once everyone in the project team is confident that this model can be taken up to its next level, now starts the main work of proper communication. The management team should have a transparent level of conveying this message to the site and the workers who would be working on this project. One of the best way of doing so is by getting the model to the site itself. One can carry out layout device. The layout device would efficiently help the surveyor to use the tools designed to help the individual easily perfectly plan down the layout of the project.

Collaboration and Communication: One of the key element to address is the quality as well as the timely communication between various participants involved in this project. A proper tool should be use for timely communication to all the participants from the top level to the ground level so as to avoid any miscommunication. The use of tool would also help the various contributors to have access to the most recent and updated version of the construction documents. The main aim of the management team is to get the main team responsible for the project on board. This would lead to a reduction in the clashes, less chances of making mistakes or errors, lead to improvement in communication thus leading to reduction in the rework.

In the current age, there have been newer technologies and software being designed for making life a bit easier, the construction industry should take help of the technologies and go in for those software’s which would lead to reduction in rework and help to increase the profit margin of the company.