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Synthesising performance in the construction industry

Synthesising performance in the construction industry There is a long-standing interest in performance improvement within the construction industry. Approaches based upon cost, time and quality (often called the Iron Triangle), have been the focus of attention despite criticism of the validity of the Iron Triangle as a performance measure due to its simplistic approach. Furthermore, little emphasis has been placed on synthesising performance to understand whether this concept has evolved from the traditional view. An analysis of prominent literature was reviewed by classifying performance indicators which establish criteria for measuring performance in the construction industry. The purpose of this paper is to review the literature (1998–2018) on performance at a project level to determine a final rank of key performance indicators (KPIs) which will establish how projects are currently being measured.Design/methodology/approachThis paper uses a combined qualitative and quantitative approach – a comprehensive literature review on overall performance at a project level and the statistical Kendall’s W test to find concordance among the authors on performance in the construction industry to determine a final rank of KPIs.FindingsThe results demonstrate there is no congruent correlation on what performance is and the traditional iron triangle of “cost-time-quality” is still the preferred method of analysing performance, despite it being proven to be ineffective.Originality/valuePerformance in the construction industry is an ambiguous concept that can be interpreted differently by the construction industry’s stakeholders. Despite this lack of concordance, a starting point on the definition of performance can be obtained from the literature. The paper presents a final rank of KPIs. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management Emerald Publishing

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
© Emerald Publishing Limited
ISSN
0969-9988
DOI
10.1108/ecam-09-2018-0419
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

There is a long-standing interest in performance improvement within the construction industry. Approaches based upon cost, time and quality (often called the Iron Triangle), have been the focus of attention despite criticism of the validity of the Iron Triangle as a performance measure due to its simplistic approach. Furthermore, little emphasis has been placed on synthesising performance to understand whether this concept has evolved from the traditional view. An analysis of prominent literature was reviewed by classifying performance indicators which establish criteria for measuring performance in the construction industry. The purpose of this paper is to review the literature (1998–2018) on performance at a project level to determine a final rank of key performance indicators (KPIs) which will establish how projects are currently being measured.Design/methodology/approachThis paper uses a combined qualitative and quantitative approach – a comprehensive literature review on overall performance at a project level and the statistical Kendall’s W test to find concordance among the authors on performance in the construction industry to determine a final rank of KPIs.FindingsThe results demonstrate there is no congruent correlation on what performance is and the traditional iron triangle of “cost-time-quality” is still the preferred method of analysing performance, despite it being proven to be ineffective.Originality/valuePerformance in the construction industry is an ambiguous concept that can be interpreted differently by the construction industry’s stakeholders. Despite this lack of concordance, a starting point on the definition of performance can be obtained from the literature. The paper presents a final rank of KPIs.

Journal

Engineering, Construction and Architectural ManagementEmerald Publishing

Published: Feb 18, 2020

Keywords: Management; Construction; Project management; Integrated practice

References