Abstract for: Understanding the Effects of Rework and Change of Scope on Productivity and Project Performance Using Systems Thinking

Identifying the effects of change in construction has been a topic of discussion and debate for several years, especially those changes that delay contractors and disrupt productivity. Managing projects consists of a complex and integrated array of decisions, actions, and communications necessary to complete projects successfully. A project is a system requiring fully functioning processes and procedures, tools and resources, and when any of these aspects are not working efficiently, resulting from unanticipated changes, a cascade of problems can and does occur. Samual Johnson once noted many years ago that 'Change is not made without inconvenience, even from worse to better' (Pickavance, 2005, page 409, citing the Dictionary of the English Language, edited by Richard Hooker, quoting Samuel Johnson, from the year 1755). This feeling regarding change remains the same in today's world; especially in the construction industry. When changes are introduced prior, during or after construction work has been executed, the synergistic effects of these changes can dramatically affect project performance. Identifying and quantifying the cause and effect relationships between changes in order to mitigate or avoid their impact is vitally important to the construction industry.