Engineering Productivity Measures II (Archived)

RT-192 Topic Summary
RT 192


Research Team 192 (RT-192) was commissioned as a follow-up to the Engineering Productivity Measurement Research Team (RT-156). Their primary objective was to continue development of a standardized productivity measurement methodology.

The focus of RT-192 remained on the evaluation of engineering productivity through the measurement of physical design quantities instead of typical deliverables such as drawings or specifications. It was found that measuring productivity through physical quantities was more consistent and reliable and not subject to differences in work processes across the industry.

Through the evaluation of 118 projects with a total installed cost (TIC) of approximately $15 billion the team provided two different options for implementation methods of the findings. These methods are the “off-the-shelf” and “custom-tailored” approach.

In conclusion, RT-192, recommends that engineering productivity should be evaluated by a statistical index. By indexing the project output metrics a company can evaluate each project with the goal of reducing the index over time. Productivity Index is defined by the research team below.

Evaluation and determination of disciplines “basis hours” is predicted by the model using design quantities. Summary of productivity basis hours models is found in Key Finding #2 below.

Although engineering is close to 20 percent of the project cost, its impact on the other 80 percent is great. Organizations looking to improve detailed engineering processes will find this form of evaluation a good metric to confirm the improvement trend.  

Key Findings and Implementation Tools

1 : Productivity Measurement

Measuring productivity against physical output quantities is considered to be more consistent and not subject to differences in work processes across the industry. (RS192-1, p. v)
Reference: (RS192-1)

2 : Productivity Basis Hours Models

Engineering disciplines design many different components. Therefore, a single design component approach was not appropriate. Evaluation of discipline specific components resulted in Table 4, below. (RS192-1, p. 9)

Reference: (RS192-1)

3 : Rework

RT-192 concluded that rework was another variable to the evaluation. However, it was determined that rework was only valid at the project level, not the component.
Reference: (RS192-1)

4 : Implementation Tool #1

IR192-1, Engineering Productivity Measurement System

The research team found two methods for implementing this productivity evaluation: an off-the-shelf method and a custom-tailored approach to measure engineering productivity.

  • The “off-the-shelf” approach uses “basis hours” equations developed from the RT-192 data set to measure productivity and establish baselines. It can be used immediately with minimal startup costs to monitor current and future projects.
  • The “custom-tailored” approach uses the same methodology as described in step-by-step detail in RR192-11 to develop organization- or project-specific equations to measure or benchmark productivity. The “custom-tailored” approach may provide a more accurate system linked to company-specific projects or work processes.
Reference: (RS192-1)

Key Performance Indicators

Improved craft productivity, Improved engineering productivity

Research Publications

Engineering Productivity Measurement System - IR192-2

Publication Date: 04/2006 Type: Implementation Resource Pages: 67 Status: Archived Tool

Engineering Productivity Measurements II - RR192-11

Publication Date: 01/2004 Type: Research Report Pages: 259 Status: Archived Reference

Engineering Productivity Measurements II - RS192-1

Publication Date: 09/2003 Type: Research Summary Pages: 27 Status: Archived Supporting Product

Presentations from CII Events

Implementation Session - Engineering Productivity Measurement System

Publication Date: 06/2003 Presenter: Number of Slides: 0 Event Code: AC03

Plenary Session - Engineering Productivity Measurement System

Publication Date: 06/2003 Presenter: Number of Slides: 40 Event Code: AC03

Session - Benchmarking Productivity Metrics

Publication Date: 07/2002 Presenter: David Hile Number of Slides: 34 Event Code: AC02