Study of the Effects of Communication Management on Infrastructure Projects in Jamaica

Parham Sean, Yan Li
2018 Proceedings of the 3rd International Symposium on Asian B&R Conference on International Business Cooperation (ISBCD 2018)   unpublished
Project Professionals require the transfer of relevant and appropriate information to the correct persons at all stages of a project in order to produce a structure as per specifications, on time and within budget to meet the clients' needs. Hence, the use of an applicable technique for information transfer and communication channels for infrastructural problem solving.So as to completely understand communication within the Jamaican building sector/industry, particularly communication on
more » ... ructure Projects, this study aims at ascertaining the effects of communication management on Infrastructure Project delivery in Jamaica regarding quality, cost overruns and time. A quantitative approach was utilized by administering questionnaires as data collection would yield more results leading to a greater number of participants. A sample size of one hundred and forty specialists involved in infrastructure projects was obtained. Thereby, the findings could be generalized and applied to other locations. The primary data was analyzed with respect to theoretical data gathered. The existing communication process was examined through questionnaire survey where Relative Importance Index (RII), Frequency Index (FI) and IBM SPSS 23 were used for data analysis. This study recognized that there is a high level of appreciation regarding the importance of communication management on Infrastructure Projects in Jamaica. There are numerous recognized communication channels within the building sector especially between Grades 1-2 contractors, Project Managers, Civil Engineers, Architects, Quantity Surveyors, Structural, Mechanical and Electrical Engineers. However, difficulties still exist regarding effective and efficient communication management. This comprises of the following: Poor listeners, Poor leadership, Imprecise communication objectives, Vague channels of communication, Unsuccessful reporting system, Ineffectual communication between specialist involved in the project, Labeling or Stereotyping and Linguistic complications.Lastly, this study acknowledged that ineffective communication management negatively impacted projects, resulting in delays, cost overrun and abandonment. However, it is also observed that effective communication management positively influence the functioning of infrastructure project professionals in the Jamaican context.Hence, prior to the implementation of any infrastructure project, clearly established and effective communication management structures alongside management structure is of utmost importance and needs to be scheduled by infrastructure project professionals. This will result in the improvement of communication and effective implementation of infrastructure projects.The skills for an effective communication management regarding infrastructure projects are making decision and solving problems, listening, meetings, motivation, team development building, management of conflict, explaining and writing. Keywords-communication management; effects of communication; infrastructure projects in Jamaica I. INTRODUCTION Proficiency and Effectiveness in infrastructure projects are greatly dependent on the value of the connection between the clients, contractors, sub-contractors, and professionals. According to [1] issues in infrastructure projects are related to communication management issues. According to [2] Infrastructure projects have numerous phases that are dependent on the experts conveying suitable and pertinent data in order to produce designs that can be constructed and also the client's specifications are met. Whilst infrastructure projects unfold and the designs are realized, information in varying forms such as illustrations, requirements and methods of construction must be transferred from one expert to another. That is data must be conveyed and comprehended in order for the numerous phases within the project can be constructed to achieve the intended purpose and the needs of the client. The professionals primarily involved in infrastructure projects are Quantity Surveyors, Architects, Project Managers, Structural, Mechanical and Electrical Engineers, Contractors and Sub-Contractors. With regards to this research, Communication is the sharing, retrieval, managing and understanding of data. Which can either be expressed orally, non-verbally, enthusiastically, submissively, officially, unofficially, intentionally, or unintentionally [3]. A major impediment that a company encounters is the resolution of the issue of the flow information, be it sideways, downwards, and upwards and is sometimes referred to as communication management. The utilization of suitable communication management methods and channels to solve construction and design glitches are vital. In order to totally realize and comprehend the difficulty of communication 451 management on Infrastructure projects in Jamaica, the subsequent questions have been crafted for exploration; How project professionals carry out communication management on infrastructure projects? The value placed on communication by the project professionals on Infrastructure Projects? How communication management affects project delivery, project quality and cost overruns? Research regarding flaws and inadequacies in constructed structures, including during the construction stage signifies that several of the causes stem from the project planning phase, that is, in the management and information dissemination during the building's construction, and in the poor quality of the contractors' work [4][5]. According to [6] some of the deficiencies associated with construction sector is related to communication issues, for instance, an inadequately detailed drawing; contractors and sub-contractor's not given correct instructions or the required technical information is unavailable. How project professionals gather and distribute information in a timely manner when working on infrastructure projects in Jamaica is what is uncertain. This research seeks to eliminate the gaps or significant lack of information in this area of infrastructure projects in Jamaica. A methodical literature review concerning project communication and issues regarding successful communication within infrastructure project was analyzed. Literature involving risks, which also included ineffective communication within infrastructure projects, were retrieved from the Internet, journals, and newspaper articles. Documents associated to communication on infrastructure projects, publications highlighting issues of ineffective communication and looking at improving communication procedure for infrastructure projects were chosen. Publications on techniques and tools used in communication management at present and future research required were selected. To have a good understanding of communication on infrastructure projects, methods of communication, tools, trends, types, methods and plan are reviewed through literature study. B. The Significance of Communication Communication is a vital factor of any work, trade or in this case infrastructure projects, in light of its intricacies, communication within the infrastructure projects are extremely important. One important reason for this is the need for fulfillment with the building codes, legislature and guidelines, such as the Jamaican Building Code and Occupational Safety Advances in Economics, Business and Management Research, volume 58 component of communication on infrastructure project. For example, most of the participants concurred that important channel of communication are site meetings amid participants, customers, specialists, contractors and sub-contractors. All the participants regarded training of personnel is required for effective communication within infrastructure projects. The participants were also of the view that ineffective communication frequently results into abandonment, delays, cost overruns, including additional complications. The participants also stated that poor and distorted information could impact the quality and quantity of work carried out. The failure of building components could be as a result of inexperience in understanding working drawings; distorted information is a result of ineffective means of communication. The significance of the language utilized between the various parties on site is vital for communication to be effective. Lastly the late distribution of communication will have a negative effect on work output. Additionally, majority of the participants whom are infrastructure project professionals agreed to communication, which is on-going amid the project teams, and participants are very important or important in enhancing infrastructure project realization. The participants again concurred that open communication is necessary in order for management to have some control. The regular review and adjustments to the communication plan is seen as essential for project success, communication barriers and increase performance levels are overcome with the help of meetings, the establishment of communication procedures and approaches at the beginning of the project in order for infrastructure projects to be successful, project manager(s) to possess excellent communication skills so as to ensure that there is effective communication on infrastructure projects and lastly there ought to be a communication plan that illustrates the roles of stakeholders on infrastructure projects. Penned communication is classified as the furthermost important communication methods/means to be utilized in implementation of projects. Penned communications is brief, inconspicuous, and precise and without uncertainty, which lends itself to improving communication while projects, are being managed. Oral communication is classified the second important form of communication methods/means and includes both telephone and face-to-face communication. Electronic communication is classified third important mean of communication to be utilized in project management. Electronic communication includes the transmittal communications at a high rate to all participants that is stakeholders connected to the project. According to the discoveries of this analysis the recommendation for future studies should be carried out in the following areas: o The employment of a leadership and communication standard for infrastructure project professionals in Jamaica o How the use of effective communication management can mitigate against arbitration in infrastructure projects o Defining the various ways of Informal communication and more precisely evaluating the value of informal communication in relation to the success of Infrastructure Projects V. CONCLUSION There is a resilience appreciation with regards to effective communication management and its importance within infrastructure projects in Jamaica. Undeniably, the many ranks and means of effective communications management has been recognized throughout the infrastructure projects sector, for instance effective communication management among clients and consultants, consultants and contractors and between various parties involved in infrastructure projects. All be it, numerous impediments have arisen that affect effective communication management in infrastructure project in
doi:10.2991/isbcd-18.2018.90 fatcat:g4dkwbmlijdcdgtfs64qjz22si