Towards adopting off-site construction in housing sectors as a potential source of competitive advantage for builders
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This is an accepted manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Architectural Engineering and Design Management on 18 Aug 2020 available online at http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/17452007.2020.1807306
One of significant advancement improve in the construction industry is off-site construction (OSC) technique that has existed for long but only recently gaining leverage from the advances in manufacturing. OSC carries much potential and even termed as the modern method of construction. OSC has been identified as an effective solution to address speed expectations and quality issues facing the global construction industry. Particular to the housing sectors such as in Western Australia (WA), implementing OSC holds significant potentials but has also been considered risky by local builders, hence its lower uptake in WA. However, risks are often double-edged and rewards may be waiting for builders willing to take on the risks and become the main OSC providers. This paper presents the findings from a research project aiming to explore OSC adoption as a potential source of competitive advantage through the first mover advantage (FMA). The data collection was designed to capture potentials of gaining competitive advantage based on the existing characteristics of the sector. While confirming the potential of OSC adoption as a source of competitiveness, findings also revealed the barriers and enablers in adopting OSC in WA followed by identifying the critical success factors of OSC adoption in WA to gain competitive advantage. Findings from the data analysis were then aggregated to form a holistic framework showing the interconnectedness between differentiation/focus, cost leadership and FMA. This novel framework is considered the main contribution of the research that can be used to support house builders in gaining competitive advantage by implementing OSC.
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