Despite a substantial investment in construction information and communications technology (ICT) in recent years, the structure, culture and ingrained working practices of the sector are such that the industry's organisations represent problematic arenas for their successful implementation. In order to better understand the factors affecting the integration of a new ICT within the industry, this paper seeks to examine the implementation of a geographic information system (GIS) aimed at facilitating an aspect of the labour market planning process within the construction sector. The paper explores the interplay of structural, social and technical factors which, when combined, can complicate the implementation of ICT systems.
In the case study presented, the considerable potential of the system to facilitate the implementation of a labour market initiative was affected by a range of internal and external factors. An analysis of the implementation process and the socio‐technical systems that surround it shows how these factors combined to delimit the abilities of the system to meet the needs of the organisation.
The findings of this work have clear resonances for an industry renowned for its conservative culture and slow uptake of new technologies. They also underscore the importance of developing flexible implementation approaches which are able to cope with an organisation's external environment and changing requirements.
The lessons learned are used as the basis for a set of recommendations for enabling construction organisations to better prepare themselves for ICT implementation in the future through proactive planning and end‐user engagement.
Anumba, C.E.H., Dainty, A., Ison, S. and Sergeant, A. (2006), "Understanding structural and cultural impediments to ICT system integration: A GIS‐based case study", Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, Vol. 13 No. 6, pp. 616-633. https://doi.org/10.1108/09699980610712409
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