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Open Access
Book part
Publication date: 1 May 2019

Sondre Evjen, Gustav Gunnerud, Ola Lædre, Rune Søfting and Jardar Lohne

Reports from the Norwegian police indicate that actors in the architecture, engineering and construction industry face severe competition from criminal actors. Sub…

Abstract

Purpose

Reports from the Norwegian police indicate that actors in the architecture, engineering and construction industry face severe competition from criminal actors. Sub-contractors working within the law struggle to be competitive compared to dubious sub-contractors. This study aims to examine (1) what the sub-contractors’ perceptions of current contracting practices are, (2) what problems they face and (3) what countermeasures can be used to improve the situation.

Design/Methodology/Approach

The research was carried out on the basis of a qualitative approach. A literature review and a document study of reports from the sub-contractors, public agencies and other relevant organisations were conducted. In addition, in-depth interviews were conducted with the management of eight sub-contractors in the Norwegian architecture, engineering and construction industry.

Findings

There is a significant difference in the perception of the reality between contractors’ management and the blue-collar workers. Management among the contractors maintain that their control systems work; however, the result from this study shows that it is easy for the sub-contractors to take advantage of loopholes or avoid the countermeasures.

Research Limitations/Implications

This paper is limited to Norway and use only the paint industry as a case study.

Practical Implications

This study shows that sub-contractors constitute an important source of information in the effort to prevent dubious sub-contractors as they are the actors who experience the greatest pressure and competition from them. Therefore, contractors should include the sub-contractors in the process of developing measures to prevent this misconduct.

Originality/Value

A very little research has been carried out within this field of study in Norway.

Details

10th Nordic Conference on Construction Economics and Organization
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-83867-051-1

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Article
Publication date: 1 June 1997

H.H. Martin

Presents a discussion of the research survey carried out at the Faculty of Technology Management at the Eindhoven University of Technology concerning contractors

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1867

Abstract

Presents a discussion of the research survey carried out at the Faculty of Technology Management at the Eindhoven University of Technology concerning contractors’ maintenance. First, gives a brief introduction to the emerging contracting out phenomenon in The Netherlands. Then, provides an overview of several contract types that can be offered by contractors and the potential difficulties that have to be solved in establishing such contracts. Complements this with some first‐hand experiences gained in actual situations. Further discusses the importance of taking the initiative by the contractor in developing a contracting out market for maintenance. Finally, makes suggestions with respect to developing in‐depth research in this area.

Details

Journal of Quality in Maintenance Engineering, vol. 3 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1355-2511

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Article
Publication date: 29 May 2007

Rosanna Duncan, Julianne Mortimer and Jane Hallas

The UK Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000 places a statutory duty on all public authorities to promote race equality throughout all their functions. The purpose of this…

Abstract

Purpose

The UK Race Relations (Amendment) Act 2000 places a statutory duty on all public authorities to promote race equality throughout all their functions. The purpose of this paper is to discuss steps being taken by social landlords in Wales and contractors and consultants to promote race equality within the construction procurement process.

Design/methodology/approach

The principle methods of data collection were focus groups with social landlords and postal questionnaires and semi structured telephone interviews with construction contractors and consultants.

Findings

Little action is being taken by social landlords in Wales to promote race equality within the construction procurement process. Furthermore, construction contractors and consultants that undertake work on behalf of social landlords are doing little to ensure race equality within their own organisations.

Research limitations/implications

A relatively small sample of construction contractors and consultants took part in the research.

Practical implications

In order to meet their obligations under current legislation social landlords need to ensure that they promote race equality within the procurement process. Construction companies including maintenance and minor works contractors that aspire to be engaged by social landlords will need to demonstrate that they are committed to race equality and its implementation and have the appropriate policies and procedures in place to ensure this.

Originality/value

This research is the first to evaluate the procurement practices of social landlords in Wales and how these practices may impact on race equality within the procurement process. The research also examined the steps being taken to promote equality by construction contractors and consultants operating within the social housing sector in Wales.

Details

Facilities, vol. 25 no. 7/8
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-2772

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Article
Publication date: 22 August 2008

Robert H. Kieserman

This paper aims to explain the rules and regulations for using independent contractors in a library setting.

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1858

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explain the rules and regulations for using independent contractors in a library setting.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper uses the personal expertise of the author who has been a professor of human resources management as well as a library consultant to all types of libraries for over 15 years.

Findings

The importance of treating independent contractors very differently from employees is emphasized. The paper provides a step‐by‐step guideline on the compliance issues by which every library and independent contractor must abide to guarantee a legitimate relationship in the eyes of the Internal Revenue Service.

Originality/value

This paper helps the library director and the library department manager more intelligently use independent contractors within the operation of a library organization.

Details

The Bottom Line, vol. 21 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0888-045X

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Article
Publication date: 8 May 2007

Thanapun Prasertrungruang and B.H.W. Hadikusumo

This study is intended to investigate the current practices and problems in heavy equipment management as well as to identify practices capable of alleviating equipment…

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1458

Abstract

Purpose

This study is intended to investigate the current practices and problems in heavy equipment management as well as to identify practices capable of alleviating equipment management problems for highway contractors in Thailand.

Design/methodology/approach

Equipment management practices were identified and analysed by SPSS using a questionnaire survey. ANOVA test was used to reveal significant differences in equipment management practices among different contractor sizes. Relationships between equipment management practices and problems were also revealed.

Findings

The equipment management practices vary, to some extent, among different contractor sizes. While practices of medium and small contractors tend to be similar, practices of large contractors are different from those of smaller contractors. Large contractors often put more emphasis on outsourcing strategy for equipment management. Moreover, large contractors frequently dispose of or replace equipment as soon as the equipment becomes inefficient before incurring high repair costs. Conversely, smaller contractors tend to mainly emphasise on the company finance and the budget availability as they often rely on purchasing strategy, especially buying used machines. Overall, equipment practices of large contractors were found to be more successful than smaller contractors in minimising equipment management problems, including long downtime duration and cost.

Originality/value

This research is of value for better understanding practices and problems relating to heavy equipment management among different contractor sizes. The study also highlights practices that are capable of reducing problems relating to heavy equipment management for highway contractors.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. 14 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 1 October 2002

C.Y. Yiu, S.M. Lo, S. Thomas Ng and Michael M.F. Ng

Contractor selection models have been developed for large scale works with the assumption of the availability of contractor’s information for the clients. However, a…

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1832

Abstract

Contractor selection models have been developed for large scale works with the assumption of the availability of contractor’s information for the clients. However, a similar study of small building works, especially building maintenance and repair works, is almost ignored. In light of the small amount of work, the employment of building consultants for the selection of contractors in small works is often not feasible, and the cost of acquiring the contractor’s information is often prohibitively high. This research uses case studies to show that a contractor selection model for large scale works does not perform well in small works without the advice of the consultant. The high proportion of specification costs in small works contracting deters the detailed design and documentation stage. A wider variation of tender sums is therefore expected and revealed in the case studies. This paper reviews the building procurement mechanism in small building works in Hong Kong and argues that the employment of a property management agent is conducive to the contractor selection process. Accordingly, further investigations are warranted for a contractor selection model for small building works.

Details

Structural Survey, vol. 20 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0263-080X

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Article
Publication date: 1 August 1996

Nasrollah Ahadiat and Keith Ehrenreich

Government contractors operate under circumstances unmatched in the commercial marketplace. A significant factor for conducting business in that environment is the use of…

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1519

Abstract

Government contractors operate under circumstances unmatched in the commercial marketplace. A significant factor for conducting business in that environment is the use of heavy regulations. Government regulations for defence contractors include such procurement requirements as cost accounting standards, cost limitations and cost exclusions as outlined in the Defense Contract Audit Manual, Federal Acquisitions Regulations and Defense Acquisition Regulations. Defense Contract Audit Agency auditors must perform all necessary audits and ascertain contractor compliance with these standards as part of their internal control review. While contractors maintain costly accounting systems for the sole purpose of reporting to the Government, frequently adverse audit opinions are presented resulting in adversarial relationship between the two parties. First, addresses some of the most significant issues that lead to the development of conflict between the Goverment auditors and contractors, then provides some recommendations which are expected to reduce tension and increase efficiency of audit operations.

Details

Managerial Auditing Journal, vol. 11 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0268-6902

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Article
Publication date: 21 December 2021

Ting Shang, Xin Hu, Kunhui Ye and Vivian W. Y. Tam

This study aims to map out contractors' thoughts on construction-related environmental recovery as an excuse for deliberately carrying on unsustainable construction.

Abstract

Purpose

This study aims to map out contractors' thoughts on construction-related environmental recovery as an excuse for deliberately carrying on unsustainable construction.

Design/methodology/approach

A typical highway construction project in China was investigated. Textual materials were collected through semistructured interviews. Content analysis was conducted to derive qualitative data from the textual materials.

Findings

The research findings reveal a trend of environmental recovery associated with construction activities. It is found that contractors utilize this trend to maintain unsustainable construction. Furthermore, the effects of environmental recovery equip local governments with a tolerance for environmental degradation, and the environmental tolerance allows contractors to continue unsustainable construction without being discovered.

Originality/value

This paper presents an environmental recovery-based perspective on unsustainable construction and sheds some light on the promotion of sustainable construction.

Details

Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0969-9988

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Article
Publication date: 7 December 2021

Chipozya Kosta Tembo, Franco Muleya and Emmanuellie Phiri

This research aimed to investigate the extent to which organisational culture is practised in local and foreign contractors in grade one and two categories and how it…

Abstract

Purpose

This research aimed to investigate the extent to which organisational culture is practised in local and foreign contractors in grade one and two categories and how it affects their performance.

Design/methodology/approach

The approach for this research was positivist in nature adopting a mono-method of data collection through a survey using self-administered questionnaires. A total of 138 questionnaires were distributed among public clients and large-scale contractors registered in the stated grades, and 112 questionnaires were returned for analysis representing an overall response rate of 81% for contractors and clients.

Findings

Findings revealed that in organisational culture, significant differences were found for management style and dominant characteristics of the organisation between local and foreign contractors. Differences were not found for leadership styles, measures of success and organisational glue. Results suggest that for local contractors to perform better, significant changes are needed to their management style and dominant characteristics of their organisations.

Originality/value

Foreign contractors in the Zambian construction industry are reportedly outperforming local contractors making them preferred contractors on larger public projects accounting for 85% of construction projects by value of works. This study presents the differences in organisational culture between foreign and local firms. It further demonstrates that organisational culture plays a key role in determining performance of a contracting firm. The study presents areas that local contractors can improve in organisational culture in order to remain competitive.

Details

Built Environment Project and Asset Management, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2044-124X

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Article
Publication date: 23 November 2021

Emmanuel Dele Omopariola, Abimbola Olukemi Windapo, David J. Edwards and Nicholas Chileshe

Construction companies require meticulous and thorough financial planning to ensure business survival in an increasingly competitive global market. Past studies assert…

Abstract

Purpose

Construction companies require meticulous and thorough financial planning to ensure business survival in an increasingly competitive global market. Past studies assert that cash flow management is also crucial to meeting project and organisational performance expectations. However, the link between an advance payment system (APS), cash flow and project performance has hitherto received scant academic attention. Therefore, this study aims to investigate the attributes and impact of APS on cash flow, project and organisational performance. This study surveyed all registered contractors listed in Grades 1–9 on the Construction Industry Development Board Register of Contractors in South Africa.

Design/methodology/approach

This study adopted an empirical epistemological design and deductive reasoning to analyse primary data collated via a questionnaire data collection instrument. Summary statistical and regression analysis were used to explore data garnered.

Findings

This study found that key significant attributes of APS in South Africa were payment of balance to the contractor upon project delivery; advance payment to contractors before the commencement of the work; and payment to contractors as agreed. This study proffers that project performance in terms of cost, time and quality performance is highly and positively supported by APS. Moreover, APS positively supports the efficiency, competitiveness and profitability of construction organisations. Cumulatively, these findings confirm that APS attributes in South Africa conforms to the global attributes of APS. The research concludes that client use of APS on projects improves the likelihood of attaining improved quality and time performance. This paper concludes with a recommendation that both public and private clients consider the option of an APS as the ideal payment system to support project and organisational performance.

Originality/value

To the best of the authors’ knowledge, this work constitutes the first attempt to explore the linkages between an APS, cash flow and project performance in South Africa and seeks to engender wider polemic debate and further discussion among industry stakeholders.

Details

Journal of Financial Management of Property and Construction , vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1366-4387

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