Business Finance
University of Malaya XYZ Construction Industry Case Study Discussion

University of Malaya

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I need support with this Management question so I can learn better.

there are four questions. .Total: need 400-600 words for 4 questions

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Company: Interviewee: Venue: CASE STUDY 3 Innovation Project Manager, Ms LEL Innovation Project Manager Office Date: 09.01.2013 Duration of Interview: XXX Copy : Excerpts, GSB-DA Course Oct 2019 Sharon: Tell me what motivated your company to have innovation XYZ? 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 Ms. LEL: In US, the innovation of XYZ is more prevalent amongst the smaller consultants because they want to differentiate themselves. When the construction giants are differentiating themselves, the smaller ones start to use XYZ to differentiate themselves. Because the smaller firms use XYZ, the bigger firms start to wake up. Productivity translates to bottom line. Also construction being dirty, risky and dusty – how would it appeal to the younger generation. A mechanical engineer has a choice of working in manufacturing, consultancy, construction – how to attract talents to construction becomes difficult. The older generation of construction doesn’t need qualification and bangs table (less professional) in their work – this needs to change. Using XYZ is not impress talents but overall in an industry we must be more competitive. Only if we are more competitive then we can remunerate them, they take pride in their jobs then the whole industry can grow. If you talk to local university admission unit, they say that the civil engineering courses are not so appealing to students. We are not even talking about getting the `cream’ but just getting people to join the course. When we started XYZ, the industry started to know, i.e. when we brand CASE 3, it attract some of the very good candidates. At least, they have a choice to use XYZ other than being in the hot sun doing engineering work. We don’t mean with XYZ quality issues will be sorted out, it comes back to our culture whether we are particular about quality about culture in the site/project implementation. And also we know our industry supply chain – foreign labor is doing the work – these are not skilled -- they may be farmers who become construction workers. 22 Sharon: How were things done before your company has innovation XYZ? 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 Ms. LEL: Before XYZ there’s a lot of fire fighting with no upfront planning and confirmation. When you actually have drawings and start to coordinate almost reaching the execution part already but now it’s different. Now we involve a lot more people and involve them earlier at the upfront. And towards the tail end, during execution onsite, the engineers have been cut down less firefighting. It “reduces the work and improves productivity. In terms of cost estimations we are also building our master library. Through the years, we have files but they are very fragmented – they are here and there –but now we are consolidating them into a Master Library and data. Eventually this will be our competitive advantage as well. At the end of the day, it’s to ensure things are structured and in a systematic form. But still it cannot eliminate tacit knowledge. For example, I am involved in kicking out this project, the process of pushing change management, there are experiences where you simply talk to people – it’s very hard to codify and it stays with you. We need to form a system and eventually a community of ecosystem to support it. We will maximize the codified knowledge but tacit knowledge will always be there. It’s more versus less. Our company productivity can be improved through managed processes – products are being reached because depends on the contract, the design part are mainly driven by clients’ expectations and what architects have come out with on designs. So what can be managed to make business more productive is how to manage the processes. In the olden days we can use an experienced staff and throw away all coordination work. But in actual fact we 1 43 44 can leverage on him to do bigger scales of work. This is how we also do in human capital improvements. 45 46 Sharon: What are the challenges that your company face in innovating XYZ? 47 48 49 50 51 52 Some software is not matured. Some software is harder to use then others. It’s not so straight forward. Mainly the issues were “buy-in” and technical. The “buy-in” as change management is in place – we are not suffering from it anyway now. The technical issues were also take time to resolve but it comes from vendor side and we have to provide feedback. Again it depends on how important is our company to the vendor. 53 Sharon: Tell me more about the issue of buy-in. 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 Change management refers to management got to put emphasis on it, have to put investments in it, give training to get buy-in. How do you know whether this dept. Head has got buy-in or not? You got to see the amount of resources that he put in and the quality of staff he put in. Let’s say they give the most lousy staff then you know this Department Head don’t really believe in it. If they give you the brightest talent and top talent round and they dedicate them and commit them to the road map and assignments that we request then you have the “buy-in”. Through the process, we have seen that in terms of resource commitment, in terms of putting in time to join in our meetings, to provide input. We involve internal staff, consultants and at the project level we also have sub-contractors. 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 We have to get consultants ideas for XYZ but because consultants tend to be smaller set-up, they don’t have manpower to do R&D. So a lot of times they are actually under our guidance where we teach them this is the way to do it, we give them templates to start off with. Their role is passive. At the earlier stage the consultants are more actively involved, sub-contractors, sub-contractors at the downstream so their involvement is at the later stage. Actually we help these consultants and sub-contractors more. Our motivation is to save costs and to be productive. Consultants’ motivation – it involves so much work and you are not the only client for me. To them, they are a small set-up, the way they see R&D, way to justify costs is also different. But they do get involved. We have internal buy-in now so the challenge is still how to enlarge this influence, the external people which is more tough as it involve conflict of interests. At least internally, we are still under the strong “leadership of command” everyone will be in line. When you do “change management”, you are bound to meet people with different motivations – the more friendly or less friendly ones because of top management you can bull doze through them. The company has to move together, we are strong as the weakest link. 2 ...
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Running head: CASE STUDY


Case Study
Institution Affiliation



Question One
Innovation in XYZ was started because of the competition that is in the construction
industry. For a company to stand out among the others, it should have something to set it apart.
XYZ needed something to appeal to the smaller consultant. With an innovation culture in place,
the company is able to attract smaller consultants who do their best and try to be innovative ...

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