The Construction Context in eBusiness

The level of uptake of e-business in construction varies from company- to company and depends on a range of factors such as the type of the company, its role within the construction supply chain and the level of information and communication technology (C) competence, amongst others. The progression towards a holistic approach to e-business adoption is gradual as companies develop competence and confidence in the use of new and emerging technologies like e-business, The early years, for example, have seen the Internet being used as a vehicle to promote companies by the dissemination of company product and service information w of increasing company profile and subsequently the product sales through online promotion.

The Construction Context in eBusiness

Other trends from the late 1990s to early 2000 include the use of e-business solutions such as e-procurement through Web directories and search engines, where construction-specific directories and search engines enable users to access wide-ranging information about the construction industry including information about construction product suppliers, stakeholders and jobs. With time and maturing experience there has been a steady increase in the use of more sophisticated e-business solutions. This is especially true among the more progressive organizations, which use specialized tools such as project extranet applications and e tendering tools.

This is a significant step for ward from the traditional, sometimes arduous paper-based processes.

e-trading in ebusinesse-Tendering, for example, facilitates the entire tendering process from advertising of the requirement through to placing the contracts Clearly, e-business can yield business benefits to construction end-users and over- come some of the inherent problems of traditional methods, Strong information technology (r) capabilities have been a competitive necessity in nearly every industry sector. The post- Latham (994) and Egan (998) era has seen many construction firms investing in technology tools to improve business performance, which subsequently led to an increase in technology investments in construction firms. Many firms, however, fail to recognize that simply investing in technology does not guarantee successful implementation.

Adoption of any technology for achieving business targets requires major changes in an organization, its current practices e-Business in Construction systems, processes and culture (people). These need to be coupled with correct management practices and strategies. Recent studies have shown at good management is good business firms are more likely to yield business benefits by marrying good management practices with IT investments than by simply increasing their IT spending. The and attitudes towards e business adoption have always trends been mixed. On the one hand are the enthusiastic advocates, while on the other the doom-laden opponents who have yet to accept and consider the Internet as an alternative to the traditional tried and tested methods f carrying out business. Part of the scepticism systems from the uncertainty and attitudes towards change. the main challenge, therefore, lies in addressing the psychological factors of taking the systems into comprehensive use and overcoming resistance to change. context includes this subject discusses e-business in the construction of the issuing the development of e-business in construction and some associated with its adoption. It also discusses the key findings of an industry-wide survey aimed at identifying trends and attitudes towards on context.

The development of e-business adoption in the UK construction  opportunities for use of a re-engineered business process that highlights process is also dis- innovative e-business tools within the construction cussed.

Finally, this web section includes findings and analysis of industry specific case studies that were conducted to assess the impact of specific business applications on their end-user processes.

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