A trade-based approach for defects management in residential construction

Dhakal, Bibek (2016) A trade-based approach for defects management in residential construction. [USQ Project]

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This project aims to understand how to manage defects in single and two storey residential projects in Queensland taking a trade-based approach given that most work is subcontracted. Despite various construction acts, regulations, standards, codes, licensing regimes, other management approaches such as quality management, risk management, defect management, building are still handed with defects. In developed countries such as Australia, subcontractors do most of the on-site work. However, despite subcontractor or trade contractor being the specialists in the specific area, there are yet many problems associated with subcontractors. It is this phenomenon that led to the further investigation
in this area.

Although Queensland Building and Construction Commission (QBCC) produces the list of top ten defects each year in its annual report, due to some of its limitations, it does not provide the whole picture of defects actually occurring in this industry. Thus it was deemed necessary to conduct a risk analysis of various trades used in residential construction. An online questionnaire survey was chosen as a research method, which was further divided into two stages. For the first stage, a qualitative risk analysis adopted from Project Management Body of Knowledge was undertaken to identify the troublesome trades. After the identification of the troublesome trades, second stage survey was undertaken to identify the strategies that would assist in minimising defects for those troublesome trades.

After receiving the ethics approval from University of Southern Queensland ethics committee, the questionnaire was distributed to approximately 500 participants. Unfortunately only 24 (4.8%) responses were received for the first stage survey and only 14 (2.8%) responses were received for the second stage survey. The main finding from the first stage survey was the identification of high-risk trades. Out of thirty-four trades used in the first stage survey, three trades were identified as high-risk trades, which are as follows:

• Waterproofing
• Concreting
• Swimming pool construction, maintenance and installation

With this knowledge, potential mitigation techniques could be implemented in construction to assist in minimising defects. The second survey identified that the majority of respondents believe that the licensing regime should be tightened for trades such as waterproofing and Swimming pool construction, installation and maintenance. For Concreting trade majority of respondents choose payment of work done should only be made after receiving relevant certificates from building certifier. For Painting and Decorating trade respondent believed that there is a need to grade trade contractor as Grade 1,2 etc. (to motivate subcontractors for better performance).

Further research on the feasibility of introducing the grading system for subcontractors and further study on how licencing system could be tightened for high-risk trades is proposed through this project.

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Item Type: USQ Project
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Bachelor of Construction (Honours) Major Construction Management project
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Health, Engineering and Sciences - School of Civil Engineering and Surveying (1 Jul 2013 - 31 Dec 2021)
Supervisors: Abeysekara, Vasantha
Date Deposited: 20 Jul 2017 01:36
Last Modified: 20 Jul 2017 01:36
Uncontrolled Keywords: subcontractors; defects management; residential projects; construction
Fields of Research (2008): 09 Engineering > 0905 Civil Engineering > 090502 Construction Engineering
Fields of Research (2020): 40 ENGINEERING > 4005 Civil engineering > 400504 Construction engineering
URI: https://sear.unisq.edu.au/id/eprint/31394

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