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Lean Construction Workshop

A Report 

Lean Construction Workshop on

Snag Prediction and Prevention Management Solution

Date: 16th- 17th October, 2015 (Two full days)

Timing: 9:30 AM to 6:00 PM

Venue: Suzlon Excellence Academy, One Earth Campus, Hadapsar Kharadi Road, Pune


1 Dr Subhash Rastogi, Chairman, BT & BT Management Consultancy Pvt Ltd

Participating Companies:

  • Tata Realty and Infrastructure Limited, Mumbai - Construction
  • Space Matrix Design Consultants Pvt Ltd, Pune - Architects & Interior Design
  • Pegasus Properties Pvt Ltd, Pune - Construction


We are witnessing a highly evolving phase of Construction Management today. With the advent of new technologies, our Customers expect faster deliveries at lower costs and robust quality. The Smart world has made the Customers more impatient and less tolerant. For Real Estate, online portals, conferencing communications, wider net of information, and easier access to competition has made the market even more Complex and Demanding. What should a Construction Company do? Taking a strategic view, it says ''Differentiate'' as the New Dynamic Market would become difficult for the Old Product to sustain. Growth in today's world is possible by following ''Improve & Innovate''.

Against this backdrop, Vedzen Institute in collaboration with BT & BT Management Consultancy, Hyderabad, announced the 1st Smart Construction Workshop on 16-17th October, 2015. Invitations were sent out to Construction companies to nominate Head of Departments, Managers, Executives, and Supervisors, Contractors & Individuals to become experts on the fundamentals of Snag Prediction & Prevention.


Workshop Objectives

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This program is about the prediction and prevention of deviations coming up in any project execution. What we call as Snags, or Rework/Defects. Our philosophy is that if we can catch the deviations early, they would not convert into defects, and this will surely save us a lot of money and effort as a company. As an example, there are generally two types of corrections, or rework that come up during project execution.

  • Small - Window Alignment, Skirting, Fitting the right material, Quality of POP & Paint Work
  • Large - core cutting for AC ducts, Electrical Lines overlapping with the Plumbing Lines, Design Validations

Traditionally, the Quality Inspections are conducted at the end of the activity, which allows for rework to generate. This workshop focuses on how to predict and prevent the non-conformances. The idea is to be inclusive and look after the performance of the Contractors and Sub-Contractors also. Because, their loss is our loss, as a Company we all bear the loss if any deviation takes place. This loss is sometimes, 15 to 20 percent of the project cost. The purpose of the program is to:

  • Educate next Generation Tools, Methods, embedded with Digital Technologies to Predict, Prevent & Contain Snags
  • Understand the Power of Lean Digital Thinking, in bringing tremendous change in the attitude and work-culture for higher Quality during projects onsite and offsite
  • Appreciate the Criticality of (often ignored) of REWORK leading to extra efforts, costs and project delays
  • Ignite spark in participants to make senior management realize how customers & employees delight will improve significantly, using the power of Lean Digital Thinking

Summary of the Workshop

The workshop began with understanding the Indian Real Estate scenario. The Construction sector accounts for around 9% of the GDP (12th Five Year Plan). The 12th plan released by the Government of India foresees an investment of USD 1 trillion for infrastructure development along with 100% FDI. This gives the Real Estate companies in India an opportunity to collaborate with MNCs and benefit from initiatives such as Make In India, Skill India, Zero Defect policy etc. There is an imminent need for world class infrastructure facilities such as roads, power projects, ports, bridges etc in order to achieve a faster growth in the economy. However, the report published by Institute for Lean Construction Excellence, Nagpur Center, a non-profit organisation, states that:

  • 91% of the projects are delayed (due to snags/ rework)
  • 94% of the projects are overrun in cost by 15% or more
  • 99% of the projects show low job satisfaction
  • 92% of the first time customers do not want to repeat business
  • 90% of the customers do not like the final product

Other than this, the analysis of data collected from around six projects conclude that percentage of waste is quite high:

Material Scrap Labor Time Utilization Cost Of Labor Inefficiency Equipment Time Utilization Cost Of Equipment Inefficiency Cost Of Total Waste
4.40% VA = 25% 8.10% VA = 32% 1.40% 9.50%

NVA = 59%


NVA = 62%


NVAR = 16%


NVAR = 06%


Source: IIT Madras

The primary reason is that the conventional Quality Management systems, though in existence for more than 40 years, has failed to deliver the expected results. The participants were asked to share their concerns and challenges towards delivering good quality by listing down their top ten issues. (See Pic 1 & 2):

Our Observations Pic 1 Pic 2
  1. Recurrence of Snags 
  2. Drawings (multiple versions/ not referring)
  3. Too many Contractors (3C problems)
  4. Silo work Environment 
  5. Focus on ''Higher Output''/ Invoice
  6. ''My Contract'' Mind-set 
  7. Mediocre Supervision
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We found much similarities between our observations gathered from various infrastructure projects and the problems listed by participants. The other top issues are: Lack of shared vision of the project; Busy Syndrome: No time for improvement; Fire-fighting & Blame Game, Ineffective Task Sequencing, Very low usage of Jigs/ Fixtures/ Tools/ Instruments, Reactive ''Find & Fix'' approach, rather than '' Predict & prevent''; Very low usage of Mobile and other Digital technologies; Over-Defined / Under-defined QMS: Role of Quality Function; Big Process Overhead: people not practicing; Complex Designs leading to greater Snags; Poor quality of Contractors / Workers; Not adapting newer trends & updating processes; Poor Planning: Haste-leading to poor quality; Process Exception/ Deviation Handling not defined. Govt. regulations are also a barrier when it comes to delay in projects. The builders have gone into the vicious cycle of delayed projects. The customers who are in fact the real users have to then succumb to this rigmarole.  


So, it is our social responsibility to reduce any kind of defects, errors and wastes that happen during project execution. This will lead to reduction in cost overruns and if the costs come come down, we are of sure selling more quality projects! Demography is a critical facto which is making India a sought after country. There is a mix of generations seen today - gen x, y and z. The newest in the block are millennials - who have their own way of working. As far as they are concerned, they do not want just money rather some challenging work! They also don't prefer sitting in an office environment working on a desktop but will be happy to work - anytime, anywhere and on any device. The onslaught of Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data analytics, Cloud Computing etc has made a huge impact on this generation.


However, the construction Sector lags behind and the methods applied to finding snags, reworks & defects are reactive. Other sectors like manufacturing, healthcare, services etc have adapted with changing times & newer philosophies like Lean, Kaizen, and Six Sigma etc are put to use to predict and prevent snags thus becoming proactive. In the construction sector there is also a very low usage of Jigs, Fixture, Tools and Instruments which can enable a professional. It does not conduct feasibility studies to determine organisational capabilities.   The cost of poor quality is hampering the customers as well as the organisations. The project managers has to put focused efforts to reduce the cost of construction quality. The impact of defects on quality is quite high during building, inspection, snagging & de-snagging after handover.


Only a paradigm shift can provide the breakthrough for professionals & organisations in the construction industry. The time tested philosophies of Lean & Kaizen should become the guiding principles. Kaizen or Continual Improvement will lead to incremental gains and also enhance the capabilities of both the individuals and organisations. The Lean philosophy focusses on identification, reduction and elimination of process wastes in all infrastructure projects which are overproduction, transportation, over-processing, reworks & defects, waiting & delays, inventory, motion and unutilized capacities. We conducted a survey on the contribution of these 8 wastes and among them rework and defects comprise 27% of the overall wastes.


Lean thinking amalgamated with Digital technologies provides the answer to all the problems of the industry. Elimination of 8 wastes will enhance the value in projects through real time communication and collaboration using mobile and social tools. Analytics will give the insight and intelligence in real time throughout the project life cycle to take right decisions. Digital technologies will enable doing project transactions and help access information from anywhere and anytime.

The idea is to capture, predict, prevent, contain and plan the rework effectively. This can be achieved by implementing the Lean Snag analysis methods which are:

  • Work package standardization - division of overall work into packages of small unit
  • Work Group based Pareto analysis - looking into historical data and doing an analysis of the data to reveal the major contributors of snags.
  • Snags classifications - identification and categorisation of similar snags 
  • Priority based on business criticality (small, medium, large) & rework or efforts
  • Stage of detection - understanding the severity 7 costs of the reworks and snags

The LeanDigital Tools which should be used for delivering quality of project execution are:

  • Doc sharing Tool (Checklists; Standard Work Methods  
  • Auto Prediction of Snags for Look-Ahead period
  • Just-in-Time, Just Enough Digital Learning (videos)
  • Self-Inspection thru Mobile 
  • Picture capturing/ Clarifications/ RFI 
  • Social Collaborative Platform
  • SnagR 
  • SnagPredicter (BT&BT) 
  • JIT Digital Learning 
  • BIM for  Clash Analysis
  • Inspect2Go
  • SnagMaster


The overall gains of implementing Snag Prediction & Prevention Management Solutions, powered by Lean Digital thinking are:

  • Reduction in snags by 60%
  • Reduction in rework by 35%
  • On time project closure  
  • Lesser conflicts with contractors
  • Contractors will learn new concepts and better techniques
  • Contractors & workers will receive their payments early  
  • Lastly, a written appreciation letter from client

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