Technology survey

Structural Survey

ISSN: 0263-080X

Article publication date: 12 July 2011




(2011), "Technology survey", Structural Survey, Vol. 29 No. 3.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Technology survey

Article Type: Newsbriefs From: Structural Survey, Volume 29, Issue 3

Keywords: Practice management, Technology, Survey

The construction industry has a reputation for lacking innovation and being slow in its adoption of new technologies. This represents a challenge to companies who need to innovate to remain competitive yet operate in an industry that does not always reward innovation. NBS wanted to find out whether there was any truth behind the construction industry’s reputation for not embracing new technology, so they conducted a survey in October 2010. Almost 6,500 construction professionals received an e-mail inviting them to take part in the online survey and 437 of them responded, representing a response rate of nearly 7 per cent. One of the main aims of the research is to understand the attitudes of construction professionals towards adopting new technology (primarily office technology products including computers and software, as well as mobile technology products). The survey found that 90 per cent of construction professionals have a positive attitude towards the adoption of new technology within their office. Architects (94 per cent) have a more positive attitude to new technology than the total. Interestingly, this positive attitude seems to increase with age. 93 per cent of those aged over 55 years are positive about new technology, versus 90 per cent for 35 to 54 year-olds and 87 per cent for 18 to 34 year-olds. Within the construction industry there is a strong element of “the old ways still work just as well today”. This is particularly true for manufacturers, who make up a significant part of the industry. The main issue here seems to be that personal attitudes towards technology are not being reflected in organisational behaviour and purchasing. Only 14 per cent of professionals claim that, within their office, they always use the latest technology, despite the fact that 86 per cent agree that investment in new technology brings competitive advantage. The full survey findings are available at:

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