Planning in construction involve defining the activities, actions, time, cost, durations and performance milestone which will result into successful completion of the project. Previous researches attributed insufficient construction planning to Nigerian indigenous construction companies, this insufficiency in construction planning was found to contribute to their low productivity, profitability, time overrun and cost overrun. This study was carried out to assess construction project planning of indigenous contractors with a view to enhance their performance. The objectives of the research were to assess contractors’ perception of construction project planning, articulation of contractors’ current method of construction project planning and assessing the efficiency of each contractor’s method of planning construction projects. The methodology of the research involve use of purposive sampling technique, sample size of 50 companies was determined using 90% confidence level from a population size of 1920 calculated with sample size table and formula. Questionnaire was self-administered to respondents, questionnaire (A) was administered to project managers of the organizations which contains questions that aim at assessing how organizations plan and what planning entails in their organizations, this questionnaire record 83% response rate. Questionnaire (B) was administered to professionals in the organizations who manage construction on site, questionnaire (B) aim at assessing the effectiveness of construction planning, problems associated with construction planning and how to improve construction planning, questionnaire (B) records 88% response rate. Questionnaires were analyzed and results was presented in tables and bar charts. Findings from the research revealed that construction project planning is insufficient and requires improvement. Cost overrun, time overrun, poor scope control and reduction in profit are problems experienced by contractors. The failure of construction project planning was attributed to client unethical dealings, lack of integrity in financial dealings of client and poor communication among project members. In order to improve planning of construction project, the research recommends contractors to perform financial and ethical check on client, employ distinct project manager to each project, employ the use of computerised systems and experience in planning construction projects. The research also recommend contractors to improve communication among project team through establishment of reliable and accessible communication channel.
1.1 Background of the Study
The guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge PM BOK (2004) defined project to be a temporary human effort which has definite start and finishing date and also has clear objectives. Henry (2006) identified project to be made up of group of interrelated activities constrained by specific scope, budget and time to deliver specified product or service. Example of projects are construction of a house, building a software and accomplishing a space mission. Hence, a project is characterized by time, scope and objectives.
Construction activities also shares features of a project, this is because construction involve transforming raw materials, finished or semi-finished goods using management, manpower and technology with in an agreed specification of time, quality into a facility. Abimbola (2013) defined construction as series of actions undertaken by an entity which produce, modify or altar building or infrastructure.
Regardless of the nomenclature, every project involve accomplishment of distinct or interconnected stages, these stages are conceptualization, planning execution and completion, and they are termed the project life cycle. For a project to be successful, every aspect of it needs to be prepared or planned. Project planning was defined by PM BOK (2000) as that stage of a project which identify the project activities and how each of the activities will be accomplished. The purpose of planning project is to identify each major task, estimate time and resources required, and provide a frame work for management or owners to review and control its progress.