Productivity of contractors shrinks by 40% in Ramadan

Contractors and engineers estimated the decrease in labor productivity in contracting companies during the month of Ramadan, between 20 and 40%, as a result of the companies' commitment to specific working hours during the day, as well as the inability to continue work in some construction sites at night beyond twelve after midnight, which they considered an influential element in the implementation plans and workflow, as well as the delivery dates of the sites, especially since the month of Ramadan came this year after July and August, in which construction companies commit to giving their workers a three-hour daily break at midday, in compliance with official decisions prohibiting working under the sun during this period.

Contractors saw that «granting the official authorities to contracting companies night work permits at the sites, until the early hours of the next morning, will help a lot in solving the problem of disruption of work in some projects, as the concerned authorities are supposed to be lenient in granting these permits, instead of setting them at 12 o'clock at midnight, a time when contracting companies cannot achieve a tangible achievement, especially since work in Ramadan often begins after nine o'clock in the evening».

They considered that «the month of Ramadan is accompanied by a delay in production according to time plans by about 15 days from the normal months of the year, due to the lack of working hours implemented».

Working hours are reduced during the month of Ramadan, from eight working hours a day, to six hours, "while the fasting worker does not give the same productivity to the fasting worker," according to the contractors themselves.

Delay in implementation

In detail, the General Manager of «JSCOM Contracting», Eng. Ahmed Abdulaziz, noted that the productivity of the worker is about 30% less during the month of Ramadan than its normal rate on normal days, in a way that makes the contractor delay in implementing some projects according to the planned plans.

Abdul Aziz said that «the official authorities must grant evening work permits to construction companies, the latter are allowed to work until the early hours of the next morning, in a way that increases the capacity of production companies».

He pointed out that «the implementation of concrete pouring operations at the sites does not stop day and night, through official permits, but other works are not allowed to work after midnight, although the concrete works are accompanied by loud noise, compared to the work of bricks, plaster and ceramics, for example, so why do not the official authorities allow the rest of the professions to work around the clock, especially in projects with high delay fines».

Night work

Hamad Jassim Al-Darwish, a member of the Board of Directors of the Contractors Association, Managing Director of Darwish Engineering, said that "the productivity of the worker decreases by about 40% during the month of Ramadan," considering that the summer months and the subsequent month of Ramadan, relatively affected the performance of employment, as well as workflow plans. But Al-Darwish said that "evening work, especially for those fasting during the day, is useful for the progress of work in projects and contracting companies, while workers can be compensated with complete rest throughout the day the next day."

Daily reviews

While the CEO of «Arabco Contracting», Rajab Auf, confirmed the decline in labor productivity rates in the month of Ramadan between 20 and 30%, a member of the Board of Directors of the Contractors Association, General Manager of Al-Aref Group, Hamad Al-Aref, reduced the impact of working at night on the progress of work in projects and commitment to delivery plans and dates, pointing out that «working during the day is better by virtue of the workers' habit of sleeping and waking up early, and therefore any change in that, will reflect negatively on the workflow and the magnitude of the achievement in it." "Labor productivity is 10-20% decreasing, while reaching 40% does not make sense for contractors," he said.

He pointed to the daily reviews carried out by site engineers, who daily review labor productivity, while not allowing it to be deliberately reduced, as well as always looking for alternatives to reduced productivity for other reasons.

Auf attributed the decline in labor productivity during the month of Ramadan to "the decrease in working hours from eight hours to six hours a day, as well as the inability of the fasting worker to produce like his fasting counterpart, while we compensate for this later by increasing the number of working hours during the months following Ramadan, with the (Overtime) system, in exchange for certain incentives."

But he pointed out «the possibility of the official authorities to allow the use of generators and work at night in construction sites, especially since most of the stages do not cause any inconvenience to neighbors, except for concrete and some associated stages of carpentry and blacksmithing, and therefore the official authorities should be lenient in issuing work permits at night for contractors».