Site Records – What are they & why are they so important?

Site Diaries, Daily Record Sheets, Job Packs, Site Field Reports… whatever your company, client or subcontractor calls them, the importance of keeping Site records cannot be underestimated when working on a construction project. Whatever level your company sits at on a given project, be it the Client, Principle Contractor, Tier One, or Tier Two.

The purpose of this blog is to take a look at what a site record is and the type of information it should contain. As the name suggests, it is a record that should be kept daily by a qualified person employed by your company on site such as a supervisor, site engineer, site manager or site agent and should detail:

· Site activities and occurrences.

· Details of the work carried out, including as much detail as possible. This could include, measurements, quantities, volume of material used and alike.

· It should include explanations and reasons of any delays incurred and any issues encountered.

· Number of workers present on site and specifically what plant and equipment was in use.

· & Material deliveries.

As well as the information detailed above, the saying “a picture is worth a thousand words”, really is true when it comes to construction projects. Including the above details are extremelyimportant but if a picture can be included to provide as well to back up the site records claims,it closes the doors to different interpretations of events.

Keeping detailed site records is important for the following reasons:

· They can be used for your own protection in disputes with your customer or subcontractors.

· Site Records can be used as evidence of site activities in the court of law.

· Record keeping in construction projects help you get clearer insight to what happened on site.

· Perhaps most importantly, they are invaluable in providing back-up to applications, particularly for actual cost contracts.

· And are one of the most effective ways to fight against an attempted contra-charge and also to combat potential disallowed costs by clients.

With the most recent data showing that UK construction disputes have an average value of around £27million (Arcadis), the importance of keeping accurate records really cannot be underestimated.

The last thing which should also not be overlooked is where the site records are kept once the site records are completed each day. The volume of records will be vast on a typical construction project, so they need to be kept in an organised fashion. Sending records over emails will typically not suffice, and a shared folder system should be setup between the relevant parties on a cloud-based system. This would reduce the risk of losing records and provide necessary access to relevant people.

If you want to learn more about disallowed costs, why not check out our “NEC3 & 4 – Disallowed costs explained” video.

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