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weight in progress calculation

10 replies [Last post]
ji wei
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In order to calculate the progress, we usually choose cost or manhour as the weight. But I find  a problem to use cost in weight. For example , some works such as cables work or insulation works didn't take a long time and also should not be critical works, but they have a lot weight percentage because they are expensive. so how to make the weight more realistic and match to the reality of work in progress.

I hope you can share your expriences.



Mohammad Mojahid ...
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I will advice you to produce Overall Or Construction Actual % Completed by Time wise in place of Cost wise.

You can use cost for invoice purpose.

George Archibald
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Hi Ji,

Definitely use manhours as the resource and then base the actual % complete on the pysical work completed ie: lenth of cables run and square feet of insulation installed etc etc etc....




Daniel Limson
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HI Ji Wei,

sorry for the late reply, quite busy with tendering works nowadays.

First you determine the level of WBS and associated cost for each trade and this will depend on what level you wanna break it (see Mike's comment). For example, let's say a typical high rise building, I would break it this way.


For Example: Buliding Project Budgeted Weighted
  Cost Value
Foundations / Substructure 75,000,000 15
Superstructure 125,000,000 25
Curtain Wall / External Facade 75,000,000 15
ABWF - Wet Trades 25,000,000 5
Drywall Partitions 25,000,000 5
MEP 100,000,000  
Plumbing & Drainage 25,000,000 5
HVAC  25,000,000 5
Electrical + ELV Systems 25,000,000 5
Lifts / Elevators 25,000,000 5
ABWF Works or Fit-out 75,000,000 15
 Total 500,000,000 100

Now, you can use the weight value above to determine weight value for each activity, either using quantities or manhours. This way you have a ceiling for each trade and you are using both Cost & Manhours and or quantities to have a more accurate progress calculation and monitoring system.

Best regards,


Mohd Syahrul
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I would suggest manhours since it reflects more on physical works instead of cost.
Adrian Nicholas
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Hi Ji,


In a EVM environment, you can use Cost, man-hours or quantity(Units) in relation to the activities. I would sugest that you try to try all 3 methods to see which gives you an acurrate answer in terms of the entire project progress. Another method is to sit with the client and agree milestones completion for the entire project to measure against.




Adrian N

Miklos Hajdu
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Hi Ji,

Progress on project or any summary level  can be defined dozens of different ways. First you have to decie for yourself that how would you like to interpret this term for your own.

It can be weighted based on cost the of all the costs, based on  direct cost only, based on inbuilt cost (ie. scaffolding not included), based on contracted values, based on bills, incomings, durations, number of activitie etc.

But not only the weight but even percent complete is not so easy. Imagine that hundred windows should be put into your house. All the windows are on the site, waiting for final placement . Your subcontractor will argue that the task is 95% ready, 'cause all the windows were produced and transported into the site, and you will say that it is completed in 0%, 'cause no one of them has been finally placed.

So there is no such term that realistic progress , if you cannot say what do you expect. All of them has their pros and cons. The best is that you agree with the client what protocoll will be used to mesasure the progress of individual activities, and what protocoll will be used for calculating the progress of the summaries.


ps. I've read the comments, mine is basically the same what Anoon  says, it is up to you, but it is your task is to defend your decision.

Anoon Iimos
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Wt. % basis should be common to all tasks.

What are the options?

1. Duration

2. Costs

3. Productivity or Man-hours per unit of measure (where you were supposed to derive your durations).

Which one is the most appropriate?

For me, the answer is not in the above.

It all boil downs to "Decision".

Mike Testro
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Hi Daniel

Your system depends on the method of setting out the trade activities.

I prefer a location summary ie Third Floor Finishings with the different trades in a cascade below.

You would have to calculate the cost of all trades alloocated to Third Floor Finishings.

If your cost plan / BOQ allows that level of detail then it is a good system.

Better still let the site QS report on cost / value reconcilliations.

Best regards

Mike Testro

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Could you please explain in adetail manner. 

Daniel Limson
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HI Ji Wei,

I suggest you utilize both. You can use cost as weight value up to trade or discipline level and then use manhours for the activity level, now you have more or less a pretty accurate system for monitoring and measuring progress.