Intranets in large construction organisa... [paper 2007/27]
ITcon Vol. 12, pg. 409-427, http://www.itcon.org/2007/27
Intranets in large construction organisations: exploring advancements, capabilities and barriers
SUBMITTED: February 2007
Bingunath Ingirige, Dr.
SUMMARY: The role of Intranets has changed significantly from a passive role of providing company information to its employees to a more dynamic role to share and capture knowledge. A review of the literature on Intranets reveals that some companies leverage them as tools for achieving sustainable competitive advantage. Recent studies done in the construction industry have also indicated that Intranets can have a significant impact on enhancing collaborative working. The paper investigates how Intranets can benefit the performance of large construction companies. The current state of developments in Intranet technologies are explained initially through a case study of a large multinational construction alliance and then, to broaden the understanding, a questionnaire survey of eight large construction firms in the UK is conducted. Intranets were found to have developed significantly in large construction firms. The Intranets experienced ‘static’ content through the provision of documentation templates for purposes of standardising practices throughout business units, organisational functions and various geographic locations, so that it results in achieving short term benefits such as quick setting up of projects, and short term time and cost savings. Only a few organisations indicated that they have incorporated dynamic functionalities, such as tools to capture good practice and provision of information targeting their specific tasks. The majority of the companies reported that their Intranets were not adequately utilised by their site staff and there was a wide variation in the usage between head offices and sites. This research identified various benefits of developing the dynamic content of Intranets and improving its usage across the whole organisation. It recommends appropriate process improvements and culture changes in these companies to enable this major change.
KEYWORDS: intranets, content development, knowledge sharing, collaboration, construction industry.
FULL TEXT: file.pdf (156,133 bytes)
Ingirige B and Sexton M (2007) Intranets in large construction organisations: exploring advancements, capabilities and barriers , ITcon Vol. 12, pg. 409-427, http://www.itcon.org/2007/27