Latent structures of the factors affecting construction labor productivity

Jiukun Dai, Paul M. Goodrum, William F. Maloney, Cidambi Srinivasan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

91 Scopus citations


At any moment in time, a multitude of factors simultaneously impact construction productivity. Utilizing the knowledge of thousands of construction craft workers, the writers quantitatively analyzed the underlying structure of the factors affecting construction productivity and identified which factors the craft workers consider to be more relatively important as well. This research identified 83 factors affecting construction labor productivity through 18 focus groups with craft workers and their immediate supervisors on nine jobsites throughout the U.S. Next, a nationwide survey was administered to 1,996 craft workers to assess the impact of these factors on construction labor productivity. Principal factor analyses identified 10 latent factors to represent the underlying structure of 83 productivity factors. In addition, the relative importance of the factors' impact on construction productivity was examined based on the crafts' union status, trade, and position (craft worker versus foreman). The writers also compared their results to similar previous efforts, and more importantly, identified significant differences that may impact future productivity improvement strategies. This research will help industry and the research community better understand the factors affecting construction labor productivity and more effectively direct future efforts to improve its performance.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)397-406
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Construction Engineering and Management
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2009


  • Construction management
  • Construction sites
  • Labor
  • Productivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Industrial relations
  • Strategy and Management


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