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A case study of barriers inhibiting the growth of information and communication technology (ICT) in a construction firm




Andipakula, Thejasvi, author
Senior, Bolivar A., advisor
Nobe, Mary, committee member
Skiba, Hilla, committee member

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The purpose of this research is to study barriers that inhibit the growth of ICT in a construction firm operating in the state of Nevada. This paper focusses on three research objectives. The first research objective is to identify commonly used Information and communication technology tools in the selected firm. The second objective is to highlight significant barriers that hinder the growth of ICT implementation in the selected construction firm. The third research objective is to analyze strategies used by professionals of the selected construction firm for mitigating barriers that are encountered while attempting to implement ICT. Different factors were highlighted which inhibit the growth of ICT. Literature review highlighted the most important ones as financial constraints, time constraints, lack of support from top management, lack of training, the reluctance of employees to learn new technology and lack of technical support. To mitigate the barriers to ICT adoption, literature has stated different strategies. These include support and encouragement from top management, training employees for ICT tools, motivating employees for using ICT, empowering a champion to overcome resistance from employees, learning by observation and giving employees sufficient time to learn. A case study approach was used, and one firm was the center of research, thereby data collection and analysis was limited to this particular firm. Nine interviews were conducted with employees belonging to different sectors in which firm operates. A thematic analysis of interview data was conducted using NVivo. Roger's model of Innovation Diffusion (1983) was employed as a tool for considering ICT adoption attitudes in terms of the interviewees' personal preferences. The analysis showed that all interviewees had a clear understanding of importance and scope of ICT in the selected firm. However, their understanding was congruent with their stage of Roger's model (1983). The selected firm had the financial strength to adopt ICT, and top management supported new ideas and ICT adoption. Ample training was given to employees so that they can learn new technology with ease. A persistent barrier was the time available to implement ICT, as interviewees reported that they needed more time to explore the use of new technologies. The selected firm used three strategies to facilitate ICT diffusion, i.e., training employees, motivating them and creating a culture of support. It was suggested that the selected firm should use 'learning by observation'; showing employees how ICT can help with their day-to-day work will motivate them and develop their interest in using it. Furthermore, giving employees time to explore the use of new technologies can also facilitate ICT implementation in the selected firm. The implications of findings for the selected firm and other firms in the construction sector are discussed in the thesis.


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construction industry


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