The History and Impact of Daylight Saving Time on the Construction Industry

By:Triad Engineering

Who all felt that extra hour of sleep after the Daylight Saving Time this morning? Did you know that this change in time isn’t just about adjusting our clocks—it actually affects various industries, including construction. As we kick off the first workday after “falling back,” it’s interesting to explore how this time change history impacts the construction business.

The History of Daylight Saving Time

The idea of DST was first conceived by Benjamin Franklin in a whimsical essay in 1784, proposing the adjustment of waking times to save candle usage. However, the formal concept and implementation of DST were credited to George Hudson, a New Zealand entomologist, who proposed a two-hour shift in 1895 to allow for more daylight after work.

The first practical use of DST came during World War I when several countries adopted it to conserve fuel. However, it wasn’t until World War II that DST gained widespread adoption as a means to save energy and increase productivity.

Today, many countries around the world observe DST, though not all regions participate. The dates of implementation, as well as whether or not a country adopts it, vary widely.

Impact on the Construction Industry

For the construction industry, which heavily relies on daylight for outdoor work, the change in time can significantly affect operations. The shift in daylight hours due to DST can influence construction projects in several ways:

  1. Extended Working Hours: Longer daylight hours in the evenings during DST allow construction crews to work for an extended period. This can be particularly advantageous during the summer months, as it enables more tasks to be completed in a single day, potentially expediting project timelines.
  2. Efficiency and Productivity: More daylight means more time for work on construction sites. This can lead to increased productivity and efficiency, as workers have more natural light to perform tasks, reducing the need for artificial lighting and potentially reducing operational costs.
  3. Scheduling Challenges: The transition into and out of DST can cause disruption in project schedules. Changes in daylight hours can necessitate adjustments in work hours or shift timings, which might require additional planning and coordination among construction teams.
  4. Safety Concerns: In regions where the time change affects sunrise and sunset times, safety concerns may arise. Early morning construction activities or those that extend into the evening might experience changes in lighting conditions, impacting worker safety and visibility.
  5. Supply Chain and Logistics: The impact of DST isn’t just limited to construction site activities. It can also affect supply chain logistics and delivery schedules, influencing the timely arrival of construction materials.


Daylight Saving Time continues to be a subject of debate regarding its actual benefits and impacts. While its influence on the construction industry varies based on geographical location, season, and specific project requirements, its effects on work hours, productivity, and safety cannot be disregarded.

As discussions around the efficacy of DST persist, it’s essential for the construction industry to adapt and plan for the potential impacts of this time change. Understanding and preparing for the fluctuations in daylight hours can help construction companies mitigate any adverse effects and optimize their operations during this temporal shift.

In conclusion, while DST may offer certain advantages in terms of longer daylight hours, it’s crucial for the construction industry to strategize and adjust schedules to harness these benefits while managing any potential challenges effectively.