This paper was first published in the Canadian Journal of Civil Engineering, Vol. 21, 1994 pp 939-953, under the title "A Pragmatic Approach to Using Resource Loading, Production and Learning Curves on Construction Projects". It has been modified only to the extent necessary to make it presentable in web page format.

Published here October, 2001.

Abstract | Introduction | Resource Loading | S-curves | What can be Learned?
Productivity Improvement | Learning vs. Experience | Original Theory | Two Approaches
Illustration | Issues | Conclusions | References | Appendix 1 | Appendix 2 

Productivity Improvement Through Learning

The theory behind productivity improvement through learning is worth reviewing briefly, because there are somewhat different, though similar, approaches to the mathematics involved. In addition, the theory can make a useful contribution in terms of:

  • Demonstrating the importance of consistent management direction and effectiveness
  • Showing the benefits of establishing on a job the highest possible degree of repetition
  • Ensuring sufficient and continuous availability of work prior to commencement
  • Underpinning work crew motivation and attitude
  • Forecasting output, and hence time and cost to completion
  • Estimating work which is comparable, but which may be significantly different in the amount to be accomplished.

And conversely, in

  • Demonstrating the adverse impacts of interference to the flow of work
What can be Learned?  What can be Learned?

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