Labour Productivity and Performance of Building Projects in Nairobi County, Kenya
Ndegwa, Kuruga Francis
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Labour productivity is a key measure of efficiency in production process especially those that are labour-intensive. An improvement in labour productivity is believed to lead to efficiency thus improving on the overall building performances. The general objective of this Study was to determine the influence of labour productivity underlying factors on the performance of building projects in Nairobi County. The specific objectives were to find out the influence of cost of labour, impact of the sources of building material, method of hiring labour and influence of training construction officers on the performance on building projects in Nairobi County, Kenya. Past relevant studies and theories on labour productivity and performance of building projects were reviewed with clear research gaps identified and which formed the basis for this research study. Descriptive survey research design was adopted. The target population was 594 comprising private developers registered with Kenya Private Developers Association (KPDA), Independent developers, Building contractors in class NCA 4 and above and Projects Managers registered with the Kenya Association of Project Managers (KAPM). Using Yamane (1967) formula, a sample size of 239 was arrived at and the researcher personally administered questionnaires with 169 successful returns or 71% of the respondent. Descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyse the data. Demographically, the research revealed that female participation in building projects is lower than that of males, interest on labour productivity and performance issues increased with the age of the participants and majority of the projects are supervised by persons who had attained a diploma level of education. The study revealed that both mechanical and manual labour have a major influence on building projects and that mechanized labour is cheaper than manual labour. The performance in building projects in Nairobi County is also largely influenced by the source of building materials, the method of hiring labour for building and the level of training of construction workers. Overall the research revealed that building projects that had been undertaken for the last five years in Nairobi County had been within the projected budget on account of good labour productivity. The positive association between labour productivity variables and performance of building project measures implies that performance is largely dependent on labour productivity and findings suggests that stakeholders in building projects should prior to commencement of any project interrogate the labour productivity processes. The study concluded that the enhancements of; type of labour, the source of building materials, the methods of hiring labour and the improvement in the level of training of construction workers leads to positive performance of building projects in Nairobi County. This study recommends enhanced use of mechanized labour as opposed to manual labour. The developers interested in enhancing performance in building projects should use a mix of both local and imported materials in their projects, consider more the use of permanent labour as opposed to casuals and all participants in the projects should enhance their level of training. However further studies should be carried out to establish the influence of technology adoption in labour productivity and its influence on the performance of building projects in Nairobi County.