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Construction Method Statements

by | reviewed 26/11/2019
Construction often involves risky and complex operations. Learn the purpose, content and format of one of the most essential documents in Construction Management: the Method Statement.

Construction workers viewing a method statement

What is a Method Statement?

In construction management Method statements are an essential part of the planning process.
Construction contractors use method statements to explain proposed working methods and to demonstrate the duration and sequence of work. Method Statements should be succient and clear enough to be used in "toolbox talks" for construction workers on site. stakeholdermap.com

Types of statement

Cooke and Williams group method statements into three types:
  • Tender Method Statement
  • Construction Work Method Statement
  • Safety Method Statement
(Cooke and Williams, 2004. pg 93 - 95)
Each method statement type serves a different purpose, but is still designed to communicate clearly and succinctly a well-developed and agreed process.

Tender Method Statement

Goals of the Tender Method Statements

  • To show how the contract will be delivered with time scales
  • Demonstrate measurement of, and approach to quality
  • To illustrate the method of working.
  • To aid the estimator in building up rates.
  • To aid the client in reviewing contractors' methods of operation during the tender stage.
  • Training methods and proposed sub-contractors
  • Assess the likely machinery and equipment (plant) requirements

Typical Audience of the Tender Method Statement

Client, Estimator, Planners, Business Development, Sales and Technical sales

Typical headings in the Tender Method Statement

  • Operation/Construction activity
  • Quantity
  • Method
  • resources (plant & labour)
  • Construction Management and reporting
  • General procedures (health and safety, site waste, traffic management, permits)
  • Notes

Construction Work Method Statement

Goals of the Work Method Statement

  • To assess operation duration.
  • To plan team (gang) make up.
  • Plan activities in detail constructing a logical sequence.
  • To communicate the method to all those working on site.
  • To aid progress reporting.
  • Assist in communicating progress & sequence of tasks to the client.

Typical Audience for the Construction Work Method Statement

Client, Construction Manager, Foreman, Supervisors, On site gang, Technical staff, Trades, Sub-contractors

Typical headings in the Construction Work Method Statement

Depending on the level of detail the topics in a construction method statement would typically include:
  • Operation
  • Scope of Work
  • Access / Egress
  • Lighting
  • Quantity
  • Output
  • Duration
  • Sequence / Method
  • Plant & equipment
  • Materials
  • Temp. works
  • Emergency plans
  • Training & Supervision
  • Working Hours & housekeeping
  • Remarks (notes)

Safety Method Statement

Goals of the Safety Method Statement

Download a Safety Method Statement Template

  • To show approach to health & safety for hazardous activities.
  • To document personal protective equipment required.
  • To show first aid and emergency procedures.
  • Forms part of the Health and Safety plan.
  • To assist in managing residual risks.
  • To communicate control measures & work method.

Audience of the Safety Method Statement

Primarily the audience should be the on site operatives e.g. supervisors, the foreman, the gang doing the work.

Typical headings of the Safety Method Statement

  • Operation
  • Plant
  • Potential Hazard
  • Work sequence
  • Supervision and monitoring
  • Controls
  • Emergency procedures
  • First Aid
  • PPE schedules
  • Training controls

Tips for completing the Construction and Safety Method Statements

When it comes to the Construction and Safety Method Statements Paul Reeve and John Carpenter explain that less is more. The audience for these method statements are the on site operatives, as such the statements need to be concise and focused only on the work to be carried out. They don't need references to policies, legislation, or regulations, and they don't need to contain anything not aimed at those managing, supervising or doing the work (Reeve & Carpenter, Health and Safety at work, 2013).

Read more on Construction Management

Read an introduction to Construction Management.

Understand what the Risks are in Construction Management and how to manage them.

Download a Safety Method Statement Template.

Get a list of the Stakeholders in Construction Projects.

Method Statements - References

Cooke, B. and Williams, P. 2004. Construction Planning, Programming & Control. Buy latest edition. Oxford: Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Health and Safety at Work, Reeve, P. and Carpenter, J. 2013. Method Statements: Less is more. [online] Available at: https://www.healthandsafetyatwork.com/risk-assessment/method-statements [Accessed 30 April 2017].