Using Excel's Forecast Sheet Feature for Construction & Life Cycle Parameters

Sustainability requires that we think and act in terms of a circular economy. ...yes massive inertia and complexity of the construction industry means that the way is very long. One step at a time would however make it happen.
We can begin with the Life Cycle Costing of Buildings. This requires us to update both our knowledge base and skill sets. Many iterative cycles would be required for maturity but this should not deter us in making a small beginning. Specially when we have such intuitive features like forecasting sheet readily available in the newer version of Excel that industry uses day in and day out.

Construction industry generates lots of data most of which is not used. What is usually used is for litigation and contract administration actions. Much of it is picked and chosen to make or break a case. With new data analysis features, making good use of Construction and maintenance data is easy. Appropriate databases may automatically be made to provide useful insights into l…

Simple Visualization of Sun,facade, Window and Shade

The raison d'etre of using Excel for designing/ decision making is that the solution is not a black box and professionals besides relating to basic principles can play with it through and create scenarios. Transparency of formulas and correlations when supported with basic visualizations however can authenticate decision making.

Seeing is believing. Optimal solar passive design requires varying requirements.

Revising Criteria weights using Excel Solver

Technological and other changes are forcing the organizations to quickly modify their project design requirements. For example, successful introduction of new technologies in the construction industry would require a fundamental change in which the preliminary cost and schedule estimates are made. Changes in the weights of various inputs that go in the preliminary estimate becomes an immediate requirement. Design cycle improvements require training teams interactively andprocess inputs improvement. Project stakeholders demand improvements in the deliverables and justifications of enhancements in the first costs even if the life cycle costing of the habitat goes down. Similarly, the technique illustrated in the solution may be used in changing indicator weights for as needed. (The improvements and user demand would also push the green building norms and other sustainability indicators).

Using Excel conditional formatting for comparative statements

Project Control: Using Excel Conditional Formatting for guiding rate negotiations in Comparative Statement. Project control requires that the various work packages are carried out as planned. Civil construction is typically based on approved building plan and specifications. In view of progressive elaboration of project, Item rate tenders are most prevalent and provide the transparency and flexibility to both the owner and contractor.

Projects are always mired with some uncertainty and items and their quantities often deviate. Various known and unknown factors affect the prices quoted by a contractor. Success of the project greatly depend on the Project’s ability to negotiate the contracts at a mutually win-win cost, performance and time frame even in the face of uncertainties.
Practice of defining a Project/ work package through a Priority matrix is a handy tool for exploring on the negotiation possibilities.

Time Performance Cost Constrain

X Enhance X  X

Figure-1 Project/ work Priority…

Using Excel Solver Feature to analyze and optimize the Steel Truss Design.

Using Excel Solver Feature to analyze and optimize the Steel Truss Design. If you are a Structural Designer and an advanced excel user, you might have or would like to use Solver Add in in Excel to optimize various designs.This feature is a paradigm shift from one way traditional design methods. Here, you  make Excel try numerous design options/ possibilities till it meets all codal provisions for safety etc. and is also most economical. But I would like to warn the new professional that there is no substitute to getting deep into the design process and asking right questions from the professional peers and industry stakeholders. For why you should design with excel please refer to my previous blog at

Useful Chart for a Construction Manager

Charting in excel is mostly intuitive and easy. However sometimes it can be tricky. One such situation is when it is pertinent to show two supporting parameters which are quantitatively on different scales.
Here you want to boast your team’s efficiency who have  increased their turnover (Value Created)  while cutting down their establishment costs.

Excel Solver Primer for Construction Stakeholders

Solver in Excel does what its name is. Like any other excel tool it is best learnt through an example. Let us look at stakeholder’s motives.  Builder’s motives are plain and simple profit maximization. Professional motives are a bit complex and difficult to formulate.  The Architect want space planning to meet his design vision. The Green Building Professional wants external fa├žade to optimize daylight as well as thermal insulation. The structural and project Engineers want  the structure and construction process to be safe. The Project Management team is required to satisfy the needs of all the stakeholders.