On construction projects daily records, or reports, are important, yet Project Managers often leave them for other staff to prepare and submit. These reports may be referred to in the event of a contractual dispute. Therefore, they must be accurate and, if possible, signed by the client or their representative. Often it’s a project requirement to submit these reports daily, and even if it isn’t, I would recommend every contractor still submits one.
The daily report should record:
1. The date
2. Weather conditions such as the amount of rain, temperature, wind speed as well as the hours that couldn’t be worked due to adverse weather
3. The site physical conditions (such as encountering rock)
4. Resources available including; staff, personnel, equipment, subcontractor’s resources and site visitors
5. Work done
6. Delays and disruptions
7. Major items of material received
8. Potential future delays
9. Any safety, environmental or industrial relations incidents
10. Any other relevant information
If the client wants the daily report submitted in their format, which doesn’t allow for all of the above, or has insufficient space to record everything, it may be necessary to persuade them to amend their format.
The numbers of people recorded on site, in the diary, may be important when the client is adjudicating any claim for acceleration or delays. It’s important when work is performed on a cost recovery basis that the number of personnel recorded in the daily report ties-up with the cost recovery records. If they don’t agree, the client may only reimburse the contractor for the lesser number.
Often a contractor experiences a delay, and records it on the daily report, but when the delay continues, they neglect to record its continuation, which can cause a problem later, because the delay has been recorded as if it only affected one day. It’s important to note every delay on every day that it affects progress.
Daily reports can form a vital part of delay and variation claims. Yet, they are often poorly done and neglected by Project Managers who often delegate the task of completing the report to juniors who don’t understand why care needs to be taken when filling in the report.