White Paper: The Impact of Prefabrication on Productivity

Cover Sheet - Impact of Prefabrication on Productivity


Mark O. Federle, Ph.D., P.E., CPC, F.ASCE
McShane Chair in Construction Engineering and Management
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs
College of Engineering
Marquette University
P.O. Box 1881
Milwaukee, WI 53201-1881
Tel: (414) 288-4531
Fax: (414) 288-7521



This white paper offers a set of best practices to optimize the use of prefabrication to obtain peak productivity for HVAC and sheet metal contractors.

The study was informed by 1) an industry survey, 2) a series of case studies, and 3) detailed productivity and prefabrication analyses.

This publication:

  • Adds to the understanding of how to measure the productivity of field and office personnel
  • Identifies the impact of prefabrication on both field and office operations
  • Explores the impact and use of prefabrication within Lean Construction, BIM and VDC

The 21-page white paper is versatile and includes 3 different types of suggested tactics (beginning to advanced):

  • Tactics for the contractor who is new to prefabrication in the sheet metal shop
  • Tactics for those seeking to dramatically increase prefabrication efforts
  • Tactics for the advanced prefabricator​