PRODUCTIVITY: What it is & Why is it important?

Readtime 10 : Eddy Suckling : Mar 10, 2022

Productivity Factor

The measure of productivity and cost efficiency relating to the real financial labor cost per square foot/ meter of coating material installed.

A High Productivity Factor

shows you have a very efficient and profitable installation operation.

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A Low Productivity Factor

means your labor cost per Sq Ft / M is too high, uncompetitive with low profit.

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Who charges their client by the hour for your floor coating applications?

Who pays their workers per bucket they mix each day?


I can almost guarantee the answer; No-one. 

What YOU the contractor are paid is a set amount to cover a given area. Only that, nothing else. You have a set area to cover by a set time at a set price. You are not paid to mix; that is only a necessary (and important) requirement. You are only paid to cover the area. While that is true to a point, the contractor is also paid for guaranteeing the floor quality. If the quality is not there, he will have to either re do the job at no extra cost (no profit) or provide a refund (no profit) and that ruins his reputation (or strengthens it if he has a poor reputation).  

It is your profit that is affected by how fast and efficiently you can cover it. 

But to apply material correctly it needs to be mixed correctly. And a large portion of the total work hours on site is taken up with mixing. Therefore a large part of the labor cost per project is for work that you the installer are not paid for. 

Every day there are thousands of buckets of compound being mixed, carried and poured by hand. Bucket after arm wearing, back-aching bucket is mixed and carried by hand. Your workers are not paid per bucket, so... 


Why should they have to mix and carry each bucket?

Because labor is cheap you say, “And I need to keep my costs down”.

Let me tell you something: this work method is robbing your bank account every time!!!

That “cheap” mixing labor is probably the biggest single drain on your profit. Not only are you not being paid for that labor (the cost is totally yours), it is also the most inefficient use of time and cause of a low Productivity Factor on site!!

We have already said you are not paid to mix; you are simply paid a set amount to cover a certain area.  Your payment for the project has a ceiling – but your costs don’t! 

So to be more profitable you need to raise your Productivity Factor. The higher your Productivity Factor the more your profit you have for every square foot/meter of material applied!! 


What does my Productivity Factor tell me? 

Your Productivity Factor tells you your level of installation cost efficiency, how economically efficient (high profit) or inefficient (low profit) your operation is. 


How do I know what my Productivity Factor is?

It is calculated by using a number of factors including your Production Rate to determine the actual cost of labor for every square foot or meter of material you apply. 

Therefore you need to know what your Production Rate is.


Calculating your Productivity Factor requires...

Calculations including hourly wage rates paid to workers.

We would be happy to send you information to allow you to do this for your own company.



Production Rate

Production Rates will change from project to project. However, the work methods that you use have the biggest effect on your Production Rate. 

Let’s look at some industry typical everyday examples.

The first three examples are typical of mixing and installation carried out with material being mixed in buckets with hand-held mixers and individually carried to the application area. 

If you have a 2-3 person team, at least 1 person’s time will be use almost entirely for mixing material.








Per Person (Sq ft/mtr pp p/h)*

    1: mixing, carrying, applying


516 sq ft / 48 sq M

516 sq ft / 48 sq M

    2: One mixing, one carrying and applying


626 sq ft / 60 sq M

323 sq ft / 30 sq M

    3: Rotating; 2 mixing and carrying part time, 2 applying part time


1032 sq ft / 96 sq M

516 sq ft / 48 sq M


We have used an optimistic bag-per-person factor in this calculation. While technically possible, one person mixing and applying 12 bags per hour is one bag properly mixed and applied every 5 minutes. This is unlikely to be possible for a sustained period of time. Eight or nine bags maximum would be a good average rate per person in normal working conditions which would reduce the Production Rate above by approximately 30%. 


Using the same number of personnel but with a properly designed labor-saving mixer that MIXES and TRANSPORTS the material.

The next three examples are real-life productivity examples of a single, 2 and 3 person teams each with one mixer in the first 2 examples and 2 mixers in the third.

**The figures are based on real average performance data. 









Per Person (Sq ft/mtr pp p/h)*

    1: mixing, carrying, applying



1506 Sq Ft / 140 sq M

1506 sq ft / 140 sq M

    2: One mixing, one carrying and applying



2582 Sq Ft / 240 sq M

1291 sq ft / 120 sq M

    3: Rotating; 2 mixing and carrying part time, 2 applying part time



5166 Sq Ft / 480 sq M

1722 sq ft / 160 sq M



By investing in the one-off cost of a Hippo, you are tripling your Production Rate!

You are immediately multiplying your money-earning productivity without increasing your costs!!

And that is the biggest contributor to a high Productivity Rate.


The inefficient profit-eating hand-mixing mixing labor in the first three examples has been converted into high efficiency performance. And you’re laughing all the way to the bank! It’s not rocket science to realize that your “cheap labor” hand-mixing methods are hitting your bank account harder than you ever knew! Sure, you have to pay for a machine, but what’s a one-off investment compared to paying thousands every year for those mixing hours? You can pay that investment off in days!


One clients told us that he has been able to reduce his traditional 3 person team to a 2 person team, thereby reducing his labor cost by 33% and still increase his hourly productivity by 40%, and paid his machine off in 2 weeks!




Project case report:

25 000 Sq M / 267,000 Sq Ft area coated with fast-setting MMA resin.

Two Hippo mixers with an experienced team mixed and applied the resin floor coating at the rate of:

1000 Sq M / 10,000 Sq Ft in 55 MINS

Smart and profitable work!!!




*Figures given are calculated based on the cover rate data published by manufacturers of internationally recognized brands of standard cement-based self-levelling underlayment material applied at a consistent coating thickness of 1/8” / 3mm.

All data in this article is indicative only. Although calculated on actual applicator performance it is acknowledged that other factors such as different materials, coating thickness and circumstances specific to each installation will result in variations for specific project productivity rates.


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