Construction Management Training

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.AD-A258 506IIIConstruction Management Training3in theUNavy SeabeesIbySteven G. ChalleenSubmitted in partial fulfillment of therequirements for the degree ofMaster of Civil EngineeringITexas A&M University*1992DTICI .W']-!EC8,Iil92-31023U

IConstruction Management TrainingiI)fIin theNavy SeabeesbySteven G. ChalleenSubmitted in partial fulfillment of therequirements for the degree ofMaster of Civil EngineeringTexas A&M UniversityiI,!1992

ITABLE OF CONTENTS)List of Figures and Tables duction .A.Background .B.Problem Statement .C.Scope .D.Approach .E.Problem Structure .II.Background on the Seabees .A.Naval Mobile Construction Battalions .B.Construction Battalion Units .III.Data Gathering .IV .A nalysis .V.Results of Analysis .VI.Training Methods in the Construction Industry .A. Background.B. Establishing a Training Program .C. Measuring the Results of a Training Program .D Comparison of Industry to Navy Training .VII.Summary and Conclusions .IX .Recom m endations .B ibliography .Appendix A: Acronyms and Definitions .Appendix B: Questionnaire .Appendix C: Questionnaire Response Summary .Aooeuslon Fo'rITISGRAAlDTIC TABUn&anovioed-QJustifloationAvallAbility CodesD i,t i-oan/or-

IILIST OF FIGURESFigureFigureFigureFigure1.2.3.4.N M CB Organization . 9Training Department Organization . 11"S"C urve . 38Continuous Training Cycle . 51LIST OF TABLESI)1III/Table I.Table I1.Table I1l.Table IV.Table V.Table VI.Table VII.Table VIII.Table IX.Table X.Table XI.Table XII.Table XIII.Tabbz YIV.Table XV.Table XVI.Table XVli.Table XVIII.Table XIX.Table XX.Table XXI.Table XXII.Table XXIII.Table XXIV.Table XXV.Table XXVI.Table XXVII.Table XXVIII.Table XXIX.Overall Characterization of Data by Job Description .Overall Characterization of Data by Rate .Overall Characterization of Data by Years in the Navy .Production Efficiency Responses by Job Description .Production Efficiency Responses by Rate .Production Efficiency Responses by Years in the Navy .Availability Factor Response by Job Description .Availability Factor Response by RatetheNavy.Availability Factor by Years inFree and Total Float Response by Job Descrpti, .Free and Total Float Response by Rate .Free and Total Float Response by Years in the Navy .Resource Levelling Response by Job Description .Resource Levelling Response by Rate .Resource Levelling Response by Years in the Navy ."S"Curve Response by Job Description ."S"Curve Response by Rate ."S"Curve Response by Years in the Navy .Two-Week Window Response by Job Description .Two-Week Window Response by Rate .Two-Week Window Response by Years in the Navy .Microtraks Response by Job Description .M icrotraks Response by Rate .Microtraks Response by Years in the Navy .Percent Completion Response by Job Description .Percent Completion Response by Rate .Percent Completion Response by Years in the Navy .Formal School Attendance .Test of Formal v. Informal Schooling 445454749

.III"It cannot be too often repeated that in modern war, and especially in modem naval war, theIchief factor in achieving triumph is what has been done in the way of thorough preparation andltraining before the beginning of war"IIIIII)1Theodore RooseveltGraduation Address, U.S. Naval Academy, June 1902

I11.Introduction:The armed forces are facing challenges to maintain operational readiness with fewerIpersonnel and leaner operating capital due to shrinking defense budgets. One way to optimizepersonnel assets is to provide effective, high quality training. Quality training programs servetwo purposes: First, they maintain or improve their operational readiness by increasing the skill)Ilevel of personnel; and second, they provide an incentive for recruiting high quality personnelwho seek training opportunities in our all-volunteer armed forces.IThis report will deal exclusively with the Navy's Construction Forces called the "Seabees".It will investigate the timeliness and thoroughness of project management training given toproject supervisors and crew leaders in Naval Construction Battalions (NMCB's) andConstruction Battalion Units (CBU's).Project supervisors are responsible for overallconstruction of a project. Crew leaders are responsible for the construction of major work areassuch as carpentry, excavation, plumbing, electrical, and heating.Questionnaires were sent to 430 Seabees currently serving as project supervisors, crewleaders, and crew members in NMCB's and CBU's to identify potential problem areas in projectmanagement. The questions covered construction management training, project planning, projectIexecution, safety, quality control, materials management, and tools and equipment maintenance.The Seabees rated their knowledge in each of those construction management areas and theresponses were statistically analyzed to identify significant differences among groups of SeabecsII1based on their job description, skill area, and experience.Conclusions were drawn from the

II2data that identify significant strengths and weaknesses among respondents, and recommendationsI3were made for possible improvements in training programs.Appendix A contains an alphabetical listing of definitions to help clarify unique militaryIterm and acronyms used throughout this report.A. BackgroundThe Navy's Construction Force originated in 1942 as a result of repeated attacks byI13Japanese forces on civilian construction workers in the Pacific who were unable to armthemselves because of strict Rules of War. To remedy this problem, the Navy enlisted civilianconstruction workers and formed them into construction battalions (CB's), hence their nickname3Seabees".Today, the Naval Construction Force (NCF) is comprised of eight NavalConstruction Battalions (NMCB's), two Amphibious Construction Battalions (ACB's), twoUnderwater Construction Battalions (UCT's), 21 Construction Battalion Units (CBU's), and one)1Construction Battalion Maintenance Unit (CBM U). Because of the diverse missions of theseunits, this report will focus o, training associated with Naval Mobile Construction Battalions(NMCB's) and Construction Battalion Units (CBU's).IB. Problem StatementSSeabeesare required to supervise a construction project or lead a construction crewrelatively early in their career compared to their civilian counterparts. Some are afforded formaltraining in project management while others must rely on in-house or on-the-job training to gainI1

U13needed skills. Inadequate project management training may result in poorly planned projects andIlead to reduced productivity, mcorale, construction quality, and increased rework.Because the mission of NMCB's and CBU's is so diverse, only a portion of their trainingis dedicated to improving construction management skills. The classes that are offered arelimited by time, financial, and space considerations. This means that many Seabees who desire3special training cannot get it when needed or desired. Since training is a major motivation toenlisting in today's armed forces, the lack of desired training may affect morale and retention.IC. ScopeBecause of the breadth of missions undertaken by Naval Construction Forces, this reportwill be confined the roles of Seabees in Naval Mobile Construction Battalions (NMCB's) andIConstruction Battalion Units (CBU's).Seabees may serve in both NMCB's and CBU'sthroughout their career, so it is imperative they receive equal training. This report will evaluatethe knowledge level of randomly selected Seabees and identify areas of significant strength ofIweakness. Recommendations will address training options reasonably available or attainable.Specifically, this report will:I Appraise the knowledge level of Seabees in basic project management skills.I Identify areas of significant strength and weakness of project management skills commonamong Seabees.o, Research construction tra*ning methods employed by the construction industry.P. Identify construction management courses currently offered in the Navy.IU

II4biIMake cost-effective recommendations to improve the training programs of NMCB's andCBU's and skill deficiencies.D. ApproachThere are three major areas of effort in this report. These are to evaluate and analyze theconstruction management knowledge level of project supervisors, crew leaders, and crewmembers; to research innovative and cost-saving training methods used by construction industrythat can be incorporated into NMCB's and CBU's unit training programs; and to recommendIIcost-effective measures to improve training for project supervisors and crew leaders.Questionraires covering broad categories of topics in project management were randomlyjsent to Seabees in all NMCB's and several CBU's. The respondents rated their knowledge ofeach question on a scale of I to 4 with I being very knowledgeable, and 4 having no knowledgeof the subject.The questionnaires were kept anonymous to encourage truthful responses.Respondents were categorized by job description, construction craft called a rating, and years3of service in the Navy, and spreadsheets were used to compile and statistically analyze theresponses assuming a i distribution.The responses were then statistically analyzed using aI test to compare the difference between the mean value of a selected group of Seabees againstthe mean value of remaining Seabees.The literature review looked into training methods commonly employed by the Navy andthe construction industry. The goal was to identify cost-effective construction management toolsI

Iand techniques that can be employed by the NMCB's and CBU's.E. Problem StructureThe first question this report will address is: What are Seabees' strengths and weaknessesin construction project management?This question will evaluate the level of constructionmanagement training Seabees receive throughout their career. In-house and on-the-job trainingare strongly encouraged to augment formal training requirements [U.S. Navy. 1987. SeabeeCommand. p. 1]. A survey questionnaire was used to rate the Seabees' knowledge of variousproject management areas.The responses were statistically analyzed to identify trends ofstrength and weaknesses common to a majority of respondents.The second question is: How can we provide better training within current time and budgetconstraints? This was answered through an analysis of current Navy training in constructionimanagement as well as applicable training methods used in the construction industry.Thetraining recommended in this report will be most effective if it is cost effective, pertinent toproject management and control, and capable of being implemented in small groups with basicIIIclassroom facilities (i.e. chalkboard or easel chart).

II611.1Background on tihe SenbeesThe mission of NMCB's is to construct advanced base facilities in support of Navy, MarineCorps, or other armed forces, and to provide disaster recovery operations for natural or manmade disasters. Under most scenarios, the Naval Construction Force provides this support tothe Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) which varies in size depending on the nature ofthe contingency.NMCB's and CBU's are equipped to perform both vertical and horizontalconstruction. Vertical construction is typically comprised of:b. One story wood, concr.-te, steel, or masonry structuresb Wood or concrete bunkers0 Wood or steel towers and antennas.This construction includes all above and below ground utilities, HVAC, and refrigeration.Horizontal construction is typically comprised of:e- Dirt or asphalt roads IWood or steel bridoes Aircraft runways and rumway repair.Special capabilities include water %,elldrilling, water treatment, and hospital construction.IJSeabees surveyed in this study were Navy enlisted personnel who currently work as projectsupervisors, crew leaders, or crew members.Most prospective Seabees enter the Navyfollowing high school and often have little or no construction experience. A primary motivationIfor entering the service is to learn a skill that is applicable to commercial industry.Aftercompleting Navy basic recruit training, most often referred to as "boot camp", all Seabees attendI

*7an entry level training course ("A" School) that is generally 12 to 16 weeks in length. It is here Ithey learn basic craft skills in one of seven construction craft specialties called "ratings". Theseseven Seabee rating encompass all construction crafts, so a Seabee does not become a specialist,but rather a "Jack-Of-All-Trades".IIThey are further cross-trained throughout their career topromote flexibility and breadth of kno',,ledge to prepare them for higher management positions.The seven ratings are:o Builders. Perform as carpenters, working with wood and concrete. They also performI3tasks of masons, drywall/sheet-rockers, and painters.,. Steelworkers.Fabricate and erect steel structures, bend and install reinforcing steel,weld most metals, fabricate and install ventilation ductwork. They are also trained in riggingImethods., Engineering Aides.Perform drafting and minor design work, surveying, materialsampling and testing. Construction Electricians.3Install and service exterior high voltage power distributionsystems, install interior electrical wiring and motors, operate power gene, Ators, and maintaintelecommunication systems.s- Utilitiesmen.Install and service mechanical systems, interior and exterior water andwastewater lines, and maintain HVAC control systems. They also operate water and wastewatertreatment facilities and refrigeration systems.i. Equipment Operators. Operate light to heavy construction equipment including cranes.IThey also operate rock quarries, concrete and asphalt plants, conduct blasting operations and3water well drilling operations.II

II8, Construction Mechanic.1iMaintain and service all automotive, material handling, andconstruction equipment as well as electrical power generators and small gas powered tools.IProject supervisors and crew leaders come from any of the seven ratings exceptConstruction Mechanic, and only on rare occasions Engineering Aides. Project Supervisors aretypically Seabees of paygr, de E-6 to E-7.E-6's have from 7 to 26 years and E-7's withanywhere from 7 to 30 years of service in the Navy.ICrew leaders are junior to projectsupervisors and have from 27 nmonths to 26 years of service in the Navy.IA. Naval Mobile Construction Battalions (NMCB's)INMCB's are rapidly deployable units capable of independent operations. They deploy byair, land, or sea and are comprised of approximately 500 Seabees plus 100 non-constructionsupport personnel such as cooks, clerks and storekeepers. NMCB's are deployed throughout theI1Pacific, Caribbean, and Europe on a 7-7 rotation schedule where they spend seven months inhomeport to undergo preparatory training and project planning for their seven monthdeployment.UIAt any given time. there are four NNICB's in homeport, and four NMCB'sdeployed. NMCB's are line/staff organizations as shown in Figure 1.Homeport training is run by the NMCB's and overseen by Naval Construction Regiments(NCR's). The NMCB is expected to spend approximately 75 percent of the available mandaysIin formalized technical, military, and general training [U.S. Navy. 1989. NAVEDTRA 10601).Tihe training is very regimented and is the responsibility of the NMCB's to maximize itsI1

Ii9Comranding CommandSta "icer))[-DentaOperationsTChaplainStaffm-Career CounsoeOuality Control*CompanyICompanyHorizontal ConstructionCamp MaintenanceEquipment YardUtility Construction/Equipment MaintenanceSubcontractmenanVertical ConstructionFigure I NMCB Organizationbenefits. In addition to homeport training, the battalion must plan construction projects for theirupcoming deployment. They also undertake minor homeport projects and staff the functionalIoutlets on their homeport naval bases such as the equipment yard, maintenance shops, materialwarehouses, tool rooms, supply warehouses, and the galley. They also undergo a sequence ofinspections and military exercises.mtraining.On deployment, two Saturdays a month are dedicated toThese are commonly rctferred to as "Training Saturdays".organized by the training department and attended by all hands.ITraining topics are

10'Each MCB is staffed to coordinate training from in-house and outside sources. Trainingrequirements for NMCB's are formally outlined in COMCBPAC/COMCBLANT/COMRNCFINSTRUCTION 1500.20J. The NMCB's training department is headed by the Training Officer,)Iusually a lieutenant (0-3), and staffed as shown in Figure 2. Construction management trainingfalls under the Technical Training branch of the Training departmeat.Training in the NCF is divided into a number of categories:, Formal Schools. These are schools taught at naval bases across the country that grantgraduates a Navy Enlisted Classification (NEC). Enrollment for all Navy personnel is controlledby the Naval Military Personnel Command (NMPC) in Washington, DC. NEC's are used todetermine readiness of NMCB's and CBU's. and are valuaole assets ifor Seabees desiringadvancement.Schools are generally from two to six weeks long and carry qualificationprerequisites, most often minimum years of service to da'e and years of service remaining intheir enlistment.An NEC may also be received by achieving equivalent construction skillsthrough the Personnel Readiness Capability Program (PRCP), or appropriate civilian experience.Formal construction management training is provided by the Naval Construction TrainingCenters located in Port Hueneme, California and Gulfport, Mississippi, and at the Naval Schoolfor

management. The questions covered construction management training, project planning, project I execution, safety, quality control, materials management, and tools and equipment maintenance. The Seabees rated their knowledge in each of those construction management areas and the