Remote working in construction: assessing the affordance of digitisation

Mokhtar Azizi, Zahirah, Cochrane, James, Thurairajah, Niraj and Mokhtar Azizi, Nurul Sakina (2023) Remote working in construction: assessing the affordance of digitisation. Built Environment Project and Asset Management, 13 (1). pp. 5-19. ISSN 2044-124X

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As remote working becomes increasingly popular, remote working could unlock new ways of working through digitisation. However, the construction sector has been slow to adopt digitisation in its processes, making digitisation difficult to assess whether this affordance may be well received and the current capabilities of digitisation to achieve this effectively. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the interest in remote working amongst construction sector personnel and to examine the factors affecting remote working through digitisation affordances.

Based on a case study of one of the largest contractor firms in the United Kingdom, an online questionnaire survey was used to collect responses from 125 construction professionals. Statistical package for the social sciences (SPSS) was used to do basic statistical analysis on the results.

The findings show that there is a general appetite for remote working on a flexible basis where a mix of “on-site” and “off-site” arrangement was deemed practical. This could potentially unlock significant time and cost savings as well as productivity gains. The main factors affecting remote working were the availability of interconnected systems allowing efficient communication and digital infrastructure that enable automated processes.

Research limitations/implications
The research is limited to a large contractor company and may not be appropriate for small and medium-sized companies. The findings may benefit organisations to evaluate the practical needs of ensuring effective remote working in the construction industry and unlocking efficiencies.

The paper adds value to understanding the affordances and constraints of digitisation for remote working from the perspective of construction professionals.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Construction management, Automation, Project management, Technology, Working practices, Virtual work, Project teams
Subjects: H200 Civil Engineering
K100 Architecture
K200 Building
Department: Faculties > Engineering and Environment > Architecture and Built Environment
Depositing User: Elena Carlaw
Date Deposited: 15 Aug 2022 14:51
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2023 12:33

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