Lean Construction

Lean Construction offers a structured methodology to maximise value for the client by eliminating waste from the entire value stream. The value stream is the sum of all activities completed by each function during the construction effort

Lean moves away from traditional approaches to construction management and instead focuses on the quality of service provided to the client.

Lean Construction generates a culture of continuous improvement that will be sustained across successive projects.

Lean Construction delivers best possible outcomes for clients

“In 2014, output per hour worked in Ireland was highest in the ICT and manufacturing sectors, and lowest in construction and agriculture” – National Competitiveness Council

Enhancing value is the essence of Lean Construction

Lean differentiates value adding activities from non-value adding activities (or waste), during each phase of construction, then works to eliminate the waste.

Ten Construction Wastes

“Globally, labour-productivity growth in construction has averaged only 1% a year over the past two decades, compared with growth of 2.8% for the total world economy and 3.6% in the case of manufacturing” – McKinsey Global Institute, Reinventing Construction

Last Planner® System (LPS) integrates Lean within a construction project

Multi-tiered Last Planner® System

  • The Master Plan – major top-level project milestones
  • Pull Planning – resources, interfaces and disciplines to maintain flow of work
  • The look-ahead window – typically a six-week period for forward planning
  • Daily scheduling – detailed activities for work teams

More About LPS



Lean Delivers Value During Each Phase of Construction

Design Phase

Preconstruction phase – project initiation, architecture

  • Client engagement and scope definition
  • Designing Value into the project from the outset
  • Maintaining flow of design output
  • Undisrupted information flows and no decision holdups
  • Aligning preconstruction participants & activities around client’s goals
  • Optimise the use of early phase resources, especially time

Planning Phase

Preconstruction phase – public planning, QS, budget, schedule

  • Initiating the Last Planner® System (LPS) project plan
  • Developing a Lean strategy for the project
  • Eliminate early-phase ‘invisible’ wastes
  • Plan to optimise engagement with public bodies and vendors
  • Develop a cost management strategy focused on delivering value
  • Prioritise the delivery of safest processes at all times

Procurement Phase

Tendering and contractor selection

  • Define client value and probe the line between price and value
  • Verify contracts allow for collaboration and accommodating whole-project goals
  • Design an integrated, non-fragmented, supply chain
  • Define construction processes that maximise quality and value-add
  • Promote lean construction methods across all participants

Construction Phase

The execution phase

  • Elimination of the 10 construction wastes
  • Inject certainty through reliable planning
  • Visual management system in the workplace
  • Reduced variation during work hand-overs
  • Pull planning and improved work flow reliability
  • Prefabrication and manufactured construction
  • Improve the reliability of assignments at work crew level
  • Lean construction knowledge transfer

Commissioning Phase

The closing phase

  • Validate the Quality of the Design
  • Validate the Quality of Conformance to the Design
  • Design efficient hand-over and acceptance processes
  • Validate the delivery of lean throughout the project

Operations Phase

Building maintenance & upkeep

  • Ensure value is not lost during this post-construction phase
  • By delivering Quality and Value throughout each of the construction phases downstream costs are kept to a minimum
  • Enhance long term reputation by delivering quality, reliability, timeliness and price, to the construction client