Decent working conditions for improved construction workers’ productivity on Zimbabwean building projects
Keywords:construction, decent work, labour productivity, sustainable development, working conditions, Zimbabwe
Construction labour productivity is declining, due to shortcomings in the Decent Work Agenda. This research seeks to determine decent working conditions that could improve the productivity of skilled and semi-skilled workers on construction sites in Zimbabwe. A quantitative research approach enabled a self-administered questionnaire survey among site management and workers from selected trades. The randomly selected respondents work for construction companies affiliated with the Construction Industry Federation of Zimbabwe database. The companies are based in Harare, Bulawayo, and Shurugwi. In addition, thirteen building project sites in the study area were purposively selected through the National Social Security Authority register. The results indicate that adequate work-related health and safety conditions and facilities were identified through ranking as the most significant decent work conditions under which improved labour productivity can be achieved. It is also notable that all the decent working conditions assessed were deemed significant in terms of improving labour productivity. A Kruskal-Wallis test ascertained that there were no statistically significant differences due to the age, gender and experience of respondents. However, statistically significant differences were found due to the designation and educational levels of the respondents. The research study recommends that training on decent working conditions be undertaken and that accentuation of adequate decent working conditions on sites be encouraged. Adequate planning and financing for decent work conditions are also proffered.
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