Maintenance and servicing problems of specialist works in building

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MAINTENANCE AND SERVICING PROBLEMS OF SPECIALIST WORKS IN BUILDING.
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ABSTRACT

The study considered the maintenance and servicing problems of specialist works in buildings. It shall identify the cause of damages to these specialist works.  a unit of hero’s apartment Lagos was taken as a case study due to the on-going maintenance work on the buildings for effective research work to be achieved,  questionnaires will be distributed to all the professionals on site including some specialist and also some will be generated from texts and journals. The research questions and hypothesis shall be formulated which will guide the study. Conclusions will be made on the problems encountered during the maintenance of specialist works.  And pointing out how sometimes the problems can affect some part or the entire building and how these problems result due to inefficiency on the part of the specialist and lack of proper supervision, use of low-quality materials, lack of data and information that can guide the maintenance work. Several recommendations will be provided to assist the maintenance work.

 

 

CHAPTER ONE

1.0 INTRODUCTION

1.1    BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY

In Nigeria, the practice of management of buildings in order to secure optimum returns from the investment made in the real estate sector has suffered servilely because of our insufficient funding, neglect, nonchalant altitude, poor maintenance culture etc.

There is unpardonable neglect and laxity in all spheres of our national life. Our buildings (both public and private) lack adequate maintenance care or attention. It is an unfortunate but glaring fact that our buildings are in a very poor and deplorable conditions of structural and decorative disrepairs. (Iyagba and Adenuga, 1991, 2004).

As a result of this very poor habit, many structures both government owned and otherwise have become a shadow of their former selves and a far cry of what they used to be during the earlier stages of their construction. Notable among many others are the Nitel buildings across all the states of the federation. Even though this one time strong local mobile communication has been sold off, history will bear us witness that during the later stages of their operation, the nature of its structure and facilities across the federation, were begging for the succor of repair and maintenance practices in them.

 

A building requires maintenance to ensure its’ optimal performance over its life cycle. Maintenance of the built environment impacts on the whole nations. The conditions of the surroundings in which we live and learn, are a reflection of the nation’s wellbeing. The condition and quality of buildings reflects public pride or indifference, the level of prosperity in the area, social values and behavior and all the many influences both past and present which combine to give a community its unique character’(Lee, 1987).

Although all over the world investment in building maintenance has been very huge. In most countries, it represents almost 50 per cent of the total turnover of the construction industry. The value of buildings depends on the quality of the maintenance invested in them. International Facilities Management Association IFMA 2011 defines building maintenance as “the preventive and remedial upkeep of building components (HVAC, electrical, plumbing, elevators, carpentry and painting), excluding janitorial and grounds maintenance”. Building maintenance objective is to preserve the building in its initial state so that it continues to fulfill its functions. The role of building maintenance is mainly to keep the structure in a serviceable state on a continuous basis in a cost effective manner (Falade, 2001).

 

Maintenance management involves obtaining maximum benefit from the investment made on the maintenance activities (Olanrewaju, 2008). Through value based maintenance management buildings values are preserved and enhanced to enable them perform efficiently and effectively. Value based Maintenance and servicing problems seek to plan,control,coordinate,organise and implement maintenance activities focusing on the efficient allocation of resources in order to improve the value of a building without undermining the users’ perceptions and expectations. On the other hand, maintenance and servicing problems is geared towards enhancing the productivity, satisfaction and efficiency of activities taking place in and around the building. The requirements for good practice in maintenance management of building stock have been established over a considerable period, the achievement of good practice is by no means universal (Turrell, 1997).

However, the foregoing notwithstanding, the trend have not been imbibed into the Nigerian system which has resulted to stunted growth of the practice in Nigeria. It is only big multinational companies and few others such as the telecommunication giants etc. that have taken to this maintenance culture, most other corporations leave theirs at the mercy of God and nature.

 

1.2 THE PROBLEM STATEMENT

Nigeria is one country where nothing works in the real sense of it, the dire need to do things outside the normal way of doing them, has become articles of faith in our national life and this downward trend like wild fire has continued to rage on, consuming the younger generation who grow into accepting such dilapidated way of doing things which is one reason why we are not going to leave the gutters of under development anytime soon.

For Nigerian facilities to measure up with that of developed parts of the world there is need to pay adequate attention to the menace of poor maintenance which has eaten deep into the bone marrow of our nation. The issue is more obscure in public and government owned facilities because of our nonchalant altitude towards government and public owned facilities.

 

Our lack of maintenance culture as a nation has been the major cause. “It is widely accepted that one of the banes of development in Nigeria is our lack of good maintenance culture for our infrastructure; be they roads, electricity/telephone infrastructure, educational/health facilities and public/private buildings, among others,” (Onaro.A, 2011).He further stated that there is the need for stakeholders in the built environment to facilitate the entrenchment of a culture of maintenance, protection and preservation of infrastructure. Most organizations have failed to achieve their objectives due to neglect of their built environment, which has resulted to most staff performing their duties in unfavorable condition leading to staff illness, absence from work, low productivity, retarded economic growth, loss of life and properties etc. However, some organizations who have imbibed this culture have not been able recognize the needs of the buildings users which should dictate the maintenance management processes in terms of policy, purposes and objectives.

With these menace bedeviling the nations’ built environment, I consider it worthwhile to undertake this research to examine the challenges of maintenance and servicing problems of specialist workss using appropriate analysis thereafter proffering solution to the identify menace with possible recommendations to see this socio—economic decadence contained.

 

1.3 AIM

To examine the challenges of maintenance and servicing problems of specialist workss in Lagos State with a view of providing solutions to them.

 

1.4 OBJECTIVES

In achieving the aim the following objectives are being set out:

–        To examine the operational state of the existing buildings of specialist workss in Lagos state.

–        To find out the factors affecting maintenance and servicing problems          practice of specialist workss in Lagos state.

–        To find out the maintenance and servicing problems strategies been used of specialist workss in Lagos state.

 

1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESES:

The statement of the research hypotheses are:

  • Resources allocated for building maintenance are not adequate.

  • Building maintenance problems do not have significant effect on efficient productivity in an organization.

-There is no significant relationship between maintenance personnel and users in response to maintenance management strategy in use of specialist workss in Lagos state.

 

1.6    SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY:

-This is to pave way for a better tomorrow for further establishments both private and government owned, to be incorporated with maintenance units.

-This work is also aimed at reinvigorating our lackadaisical attitude towards facilities however owned and managed. It is not always the duty and task of the management, but rather a food chain that has the management of the organizations at the helm of affairs at the top, and also the members of staff to rise to the oath of office taken upon assumption of office to the effect that they shall treat the facilities therein to the best of their ability.

-It will also make an interesting read to potential entrepreneurs by acting as a guide to them when they are ready to become industrialists or storm the economic scene or in whatever establishment however corporate they intend going into.

-It also creates a picture of: it is  one thing to set up a huge facility for business/ educational or whatever activities but then, it is yet another thing to set up a facility maintenance unit in the confines of the environment to see to the day to day running of the organization’s facilities (etc.) both internal and external therein.

-The study will aid organizations know the health implications of lack of maintenance.

-The result will provide the basis for policy formulation and structural framework for maintenance and servicing problems in Nigeria.

-The results of the study would help improve productivity and future cash flows of specialist workss.

-It will also serve as an educational/research guide for student and other academicians who might go into similar study.

-Finally, this research work, just like any other literal work seeks to be a mirror of the society (i.e.) allowing people from other academic disciplines to have knowledge of what is obtainable in the field of enterprising concerning setting up of corporate establishment both state owned and private owned.

 

1.6    SCOPE AND DELIMITATION OF THE STUDY:

The scope of this work is broad as it addresses soft and as well as hard issues involved in the topic of this research.

The research will focus on selected corporate organizations within Lagos who have been in operation from up to five years and above with up to 20 staff strength and above.

Let me state here unequivocally, that this research work also delves into the reason why Nigerians lack the maintenance culture on the overall. Despite the fact that most corporate organizations lack maintenance management units, the members of staff and the entire management lack the spirit of maintenance probably because it is not their place of residence or other reasons not separated from carelessness. This report attempts to address these challenges through studies from different corporate organizations both public and private owned that would be visited during the discourse of this work.

As brought forth in the foregoing chapter, the underlying premise is that Nigerians do not appreciate the beauty of structures in their (places of work) rather they treat them with disdain

 

1.7    LIMITATION OF THE STUDY:

Due to time constraints, confidentiality of some organizations, difficulties in retrieving some of the questionnaires, and also the huge financial costs involved, the study was limited to six (6) local government areas in Lagos state. The coverage was therefore focused on Lagos metropolis, the reason being the presence of large corporate organizations in the state and its housing of several of Nigeria’s large facilities.

 

1.8    CONCEPTUAL AND THEORETICAL DEFINITION OF TERMS:

  1.8.1 BUILDING: According to the Oxford Advanced Learners English Dictionary, 7thedition, it is “a structure such as a house or school that has a roof and walls for protection”. The Encarta dictionary puts it succinctly as “a walled structure with a roof over it” the foregoing definitions scarcely share any dissimilarities.

1.8.2 DEFECTS:  These are discontinuities that interfere with the usefulness of          a part of material or component.

18.3  DEGRADATION: The conversion of a component to a simple one due to   chemical changes.

1.8.4 DETERIORATION:  The gradual lowering of the quality and strength of   building as a result, of fungi growth, cracks and weather conditions.

1.8.5 DILAPIDATION:  A situation in which the damaged parts of building are left uncared for. This often leads to further deterioration in terms of      quality, aesthetics and structure soundness.

1.8.6 FACILITIES:  According to the Webster dictionary, amplified edition it     “includes buildings, services, and equipment’s (etc) that are provided for a      particular purpose”. In the frame of this work, it will amount to an         installation, contrivance and other things which facilitate something or a         place for doing something. It may be a commercial, institutional building     such as a hotel, sports arena etc. in the context of this work,           facility/facilities form a great part of the issue that influence this     discourse in the sense that we are concerned with the reasons and/or  challenges why they have not been receiving the best of treatments in our        country.

1.8.7 MAINTENANCE: Maintenance is “work undertaken to keep or restore       every facility to an acceptable standard at an acceptable cost”(White,E.N. 1973).

1.8.8 MANAGEMENT: Management in all businesses and organizational activities is the act of getting people together to accomplish desired goals and objectives using available resources efficiently and effectively. Management comprises of planning, organizing, staffing, leading or directing and controlling an organization (a group of one or more persons or entities) for the purpose of accomplishing set out goals.

Since an organization can be viewed as systems, management can also be defined as human actions including design to facilitate the production of useful outcomes from a system.

1.8.9   BUILDING PERFORMANCE: The ability of building to behave according to designed criteria under given circumstances.

1.8.10  FACILITIES MANAGEMENT: The International Facilities Management         Association (I.F.M.A) has a broad definition for facilities management (FM) which is “the practice or coordinating the physical workplace with the people and work of the organization; integrates the principles of business administration, architecture, and the behavioral and engineering sciences”.

A more explicit definition is “an integrated approach to operating, maintaining, improving and adapting the buildings and infrastructure of an organization in order to create an environment that supports the primary objective of the organization”.

1.8.11 MAINTENANCE MANAGEMENT: Maintenance management “involves   obtaining maximum benefit from the investment made on the      maintenance activities” (Olanrewaju, 2008).

1.8.12 PERFORMACE CRITERION: The quality of a component or material               required to ensure compliance with performance standards.

1.8.13 SERVICE LIFE OF BUILDING COMPONENTS: The period of installation          during which all properties exceed the minimum acceptable value

1.8.14 MAINTENANCE AND SERVICING PROBLEMS: Maintenance and servicing problems is a process of planning, directing, leading and coordinating organizational resources towards building maintenance so that the building will continue to serve its intended purposes effectively and efficiently (Olanrewaju, 2009).

1.8.15 BENCHMARKING: The continuous process of measuring products,    services and practices against the toughest competitors of those companies recognized as industry leaders (IFMA, 2011).

1.8.16 CORRUPTION: The abuse of entrusted power to personal gain, it hurts everyone whose life, livelihood or happiness appears to be shortened by it. In the context of this research, corruption since it turned from a vice to a virtue in government affairs has become the bane to must developmental strides. The radio Nigeria network news of Sunday 27th July 2012, in its commentary focused on its commentary the maintenance culture in Nigeria where it pointed out corruption as one of the major factors militating against setting up maintenance facilities of specialist workss in Nigeria.

1.8.17 NEGLIGENCE: This factor is another major one in which the government, the management of a public organization and its staff are all victims of. The height of Nonchalance on the part of these elements has also contributed to poor maintenance of facilities. How many times have we heard that a facility was burnt down to ashes as a result of a staff not turning off the electrical appliances in their offices before running out of office?

1.8.18 THE NIGERIAN FACTOR: This trend has always been and I am afraid may continue to be. Showing and exhibiting lackadaisical characteristics, all in the name of “it is not my father’s house, my duty is to do my job and get paid at the end of the day is an act, which has indirectly  spelt doom to the attainment of facilities maintenance.

1.8.20 VALUE ENGINEERING: Evaluation of construction methods and/or materials to determine which have the net result of reducing costs, consistent with specified performance, reliability, maintainability, aesthetic, safety, and security criteria(IFMA, 2011)

 

Maintenance and servicing problems of specialist works in building.

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