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Paper w78-2011-Paper-35:
Extranet technology in a small and medium size construction companies

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P Lodhia, S Donyavi

Extranet technology in a small and medium size construction companies

Abstract:Project extranets have been used in construction for the last 10 years and research shows that there are many benefits to their use. However, their use has not been taken on by all firms. A project extranet as a web-based portal allows subscribers to securely share information over the internet. This research looks into the drivers and barriers faced by small and medium sized contractor and house builder companies in terms of employing extranets on construction projects.The objectives of this research are to identify the characteristics of contractor and house builder companies in the UK, to identify the extent to which project extranets are used and to investigate the drivers and barriers to contractor and house builder companies of using project extranets. Extranets have the potential to improve traditional processes by improving communication and document and information transfer between the vast numbers of organisations that can be involved on a construction project. Yet it is found that many contractor and house builder organisation are facing barriers such as the perceived expense of the systems and time required for implementation and training. The construction industry needs to overcome these perceived barriers in order to reap the benefits that extranets can provide. This research forms a scoping study as a basis for further research into the drivers and barriers of extranets for the wider industry. Semi-structure interviews were used as the primary method of data collection, companiesí policy documents and other literature were also reviewed to assist the entire data collection process.

Keywords:Extranet, Technology, Efficiency, Construction, Collaboration

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