How to Calculate Man-Hour Productivity the Right Way


On a construction site, every worker might be doing a different job, but all those hours add up to one final completed project. These hours are commonly referred to as labor-hours, or man-hours. Understanding how many man-hours it takes your crew to finish a specific building project will help you know how you spend in labor.

Calculating man-hours also gives you insight into individual employee productivity. You can figure out how long it takes your electrician to put up wires and compare that number to the industry average. You can also discover which skilled laborers are more efficient at their jobs by calculating the number of man-hours it takes to complete an assigned task. You can see if your temporary workers are as productive, or possibly even more productive, than your full-time employees.

Mostly importantly, understanding the building crew’s man-hours will help you know what to bid on your future projects. As the business owner, you need a solid, thorough understanding of your labor costs in order to be able to complete a project, pay your costs and make a profit. As an employment leader in the construction industry, CCS Construction Staffing has come up with several proven tips to help you successfully determine your man-hour productivity.

Calculate Your Man-Hours

Let’s say you have a 20-person crew that works eight hours a day, five days a week. Your last project was an apartment complex and it took your employees three months to build. You calculate your man-hours for that project by multiplying 20 by 40, and then that sum by 12 (four weeks in a month). That means that it takes your construction staff roughly 9600 hours to complete a project of that size and scale. When you bid on future projects, look at the man-hours from similar past projects to determine how much labor for this job will cost.

Calculate Man-Hour Productivity

Now, let’s say that apartment job brought in about $150,000. To understand your construction laborers productivity in dollar signs, you want to divide that price tag by the total man-hours worked. In this case, we have 150,000/9,600, which comes out to be a bit over $15. This means that for every hour worked, each of your employees contributed $15 worth of work.

Calculate Your Profits

If you’re paying your building crew $15 an hour, then you have clearly made no profit on that apartment job. You know how to avoid making this mistake again because you have estimated your man-hours for the next job. There are several strategies you can take to decreasing the cost of man-hours, such as charging the client more, hiring less workers or paying your crew less.

Are you looking to adjust your current man-hours? Do you need a few extra hands, some skilled temporary workers, for an upcoming project? Give CCS Construction Staffing a call. We have been providing reliable workers and skilled tradesmen to the construction industry since 2008, and we can provide you with the solutions to your staffing needs.

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