AWP + Lean: Exploring Opportunities

WG22-01 Topic Summary
WG22 01


Lean Construction and Advanced Work Packaging (AWP) have different process and framework descriptions, but they share the goal of improving the efficiency and quality of capital project delivery. Both approaches emphasize constraint management to ensure productive construction-related activities on  and off the worksite, including off-site fabrication and preassembly. Also, both emphasize broad stakeholder engagement and input during early planning to facilitate alignment and improve coordination.

The management of constraints across the project lifecycle and the assurance of a smooth and timely flow of integrated work and associated deliverables (physical and information) are central goals for both Lean Construction and AWP. A clear commonality and key value between the two methodologies is the recognition that safety, health, and the well-being of the worker can be designed into the process.

That being said, Lean Construction and AWP are highly complementary but not identical. Primary differences center on their descriptions of approaches, and each approach has its unique methods. Lean Construction is based on the philosophy of developing a value-driven culture of mutual trust and respect, support to production, and leveraging a set of tools for deployment. AWP is described in a more structured context of additions and enhancements to typical execution in the industrial sector by defining and organizing constraint-free executable work packages.

Key Findings and Implementation Tools

1 : AWP and Lean Are Better Together

Working Group 22-01 discovered that AWP and Lean are better together (SR22-01a, p. 1). AWP practitioners can take advantage of proven Lean Construction techniques to further increase collaboration, reduce waste, and achieve better project outcomes. Likewise, Lean Construction practitioners can take advantage of the rigor of proven AWP techniques to introduce an effective structure to project delivery, thereby increasing planning and delivery capabilities.

With the industry’s ever-increasing use of technology, both groups could learn from each other to achieve an advantageous level of “industrialized” construction that considers all key People, Process, Technology, and Culture factors.

Reference: (SR22-01a)

2 : Flow Helps Teams Create Great Projects

Creating and continuously improving Flow is a highly underappreciated and misunderstood strategy for consistently creating great projects. Flow isn't just a pleasant characteristic of good projects, but rather the strategy for creating them. 

Flow is the common denominator linking many aspects of improved project experience. It seems clear that understanding and improving Flow is well worth the attention of the industry. (SR22-01d, in press).

Reference: (SR22-01d)

Key Performance Indicators

Research Publications

Advanced Work Packaging (AWP) and Lean Construction: Optimizing Project Workflow - SR22-01d

Publication Date: 08/2023 Type: Special Publication Pages: 21 Status: Tool

Advanced Work Packaging (AWP) and Lean Construction: A Comparison of Approaches - SR22-01c

Publication Date: 02/2023 Type: Special Publication Pages: 15 Status: Tool

AWP + Lean: Exploring Opportunities – Better Together - SR22-01a

Publication Date: 12/2022 Type: Special Publication Pages: 4 Status: Reference

AWP + Lean: Exploring Opportunities – Organizational Culture - SR22-01b

Publication Date: 12/2022 Type: Special Publication Pages: 5 Status: Reference