Covering Your Butt

In the construction world, a work report is a site manager/superintendent's required daily diary. They are required to report the sites daily activity through a company created form but mostly with an illegitimate notebook.

They do this with pen and paper, every day, on every job site, essentially everywhere. There is no standardized or uniform way to create daily reports.

Photo credit: Eleaf via / CC BY

Photo credit: Eleaf via / CC BY

If you are wondering why this information or process is important, well let me tell you! Almost every single general contractor that you ask will tell you it is to prove accountability. They trust that the site manager is recording in the best and most accurate way every single day.

Accountability becomes real when a lawsuit or dispute arises. If you aren’t familiar with construction this happens so often that the Canadian Government created a task force to investigate it.

Once a building is sold, for example, and there’s a leak or any other kind of problem, the new owners are coming after the general contracting company. That is when the GC is going to use all of their documentation, site notes, and any other information to back up their work.

What happens if paperwork is misplaced or damaged, well they are in trouble, most likely losing the case.

Photo credit: TuturKataKu via Visual hunt / CC BY

We have interviewed a lot of site supervisors, and they all take pride in their note taking because they want to document site activity thoroughly and carefully. They know their butt’s on the line if something happens down the road.

The guys who have gone to court, and have provided detailed notes and pictures, always seem to win.

Photo via Visual Hunt

Photo via Visual Hunt

It is a shame that in most cases, these papers are just filed away or sitting there waiting until a problem occurs. What about all the other valuable data on those forms? At the moment, they don’t do anything with them but prove accountability or reference them if an issue comes up.

We intend to use that data to prove a lot more than accountability. The possibilities are endless.


 - Ashley Kielbratowski

TipsAshley Kielbratowski