Have you ever wondered why your memory or your superintendent's memory does not match the paperwork generated for a specific issue?
Daily logs have always been an important issue for me. However, I was never exactly sure what information I wanted. Finally, I decided to talk with a claims writer and our attorney and asked them what they would like to see in a daily log. After gathering that information I asked myself what I wanted to see included.
Our attorney was most interested in verbal or written direction from others, as well as any visitors. Most of the time visitors show up when there are problems of some sort, and the date the visit was made sometimes helps in establishing an important event. Written or verbal communications are those that office staff may not ever see. Having record of those communications may be of help in the future, as well as give you the opportunity to advise the general contractor to send all communications to the main office and not the job. A quality daily log that includes photos of specific issues and a log that is copied to the general contractor indicates a level of professionalism the GC will take into consideration before asking you to share in his liquidated damages or other back charges.
The claim writer was most interested in things that track man-hours each day, as well as impacts to the schedule. In addition, he wanted to track impacts to our production, noting all delays, as well as estimating impact cost for those impacts and delays. The most important issue it seems is whether or not the job was manned properly based on the schedule as compared to the actual job site condition. The claim writer suggested that a well-designed daily log would save time and money in the event of a claim.
I incorporated the information they wanted, as well as what I wanted, into a two-page Microsoft Word document.
The next two pages following this article are the actual form we use. Please feel free to copy, revise or edit this form. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for a copy of the form, or you can download it at www.wconline.com. The important thing is that you use a form that means something and will help you if an issue comes up.
Have a great month, and remember: Teamwork begins with a fair contract!