Journal article

Real-time resource tracking for analyzing value-adding time in construction

Last planner Productivity
Improving the effectiveness of production control has attracted the interest of researchers and lean construction practitioners over recent years, through techniques such as Last Planner System (LPS) and Location-based Management System (LBMS). However, in these techniques, data collection and analysis still remain manual. Remotely locating workers on site has been suggested as a potential technology to collect crucial data required for production control. The purpose of this study is to test the applicability of a real-time tracking system for collecting data for production control in different types of construction projects. We applied Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology in real-time tracking of workers in three case projects, including residential, office building, and plumbing renovation. We compared various tracking device placement strategies and analyzed the share of uninterrupted presence of workers in work locations based on the collected data. The findings show that both location-based and time-based information of workers can be obtained in real time from the proposed system, but issues of accuracy and coverage need to be considered when defining the data collection plan for each project. Accuracy and coverage issues can be resolved to a significant degree by applying heuristics in data analysis rather than investing in a more sophisticated tracking technology. The conclusion is that real-time tracking technologies are ready for implementation when certain heuristics and guidelines for installation are followed. It is possible to calculate a real-time presence index on a construction site. These data could be used to evaluate the impact of construction management interventions on waste on-site.
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