Collaboration in the New Zealand commercial construction sector : a case study of a medium sized construction company
Zaiat, M.; Laing, Neil; Kestle, Linda
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Citation:Zaiat, M., Laing, N., & Kestle, L. (2019). Collaboration in the New Zealand commercial construction sector : a case study of a medium sized construction company. In Bill Zhao (Ed.), In Bill Zhao (Ed.), 43rd AUBEA Conference 2019 - Built to thrive : creating buildings and cities that support individual well-being and community prosperty (pp. 299-310).
Permanent link to Research Bank record:https://hdl.handle.net/10652/4946
The New Zealand commercial construction sector is experiencing a significant economic boom. During this boom many companies are struggling to operate efficiently, resulting in failures to meet project expectations, clients being un-happy with results, and financial stress causing, in some cases, companies to become insolvent. Many of these issues relate back to the competitive nature of the industry. In an effort to become more effective, the NZ construction industry is discussing strategies for addressing the problems it faces. One strategy receiving increasing interest is how the industry could work more collaboratively across the supply-chain to improve performance. The research seeks to answer ‘is collaboration occurring in the New Zealand commercial construction sector’? An investigation of a medium sized construction company was undertaken to assess at what stages it was working collaboratively, and whether there was an untapped opportunity for the company to be more collaborative. Findings have shown that participants are demonstrating high levels of cooperation and teamwork on-site, with a willingness to work collaboratively. However, much of this behaviour is confined to the on-site team, with limited evidence it extended beyond the construction site. Barriers to collaboration included communication problems, different mind-sets, and the diversity of understanding regarding collaborative work practice. Participants felt that a more formalized structure would be beneficial, and could provide them with the means to develop and maintain a collaborative culture. The research recommended that there needs to be greater input by leadership for facilitating effective collaborative practice in the workplace.