The effects of COVID-19 pandemic on the UK construction industry and the process of future proofing business
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AbstractPurpose COVID-19 was officially declared as a worldwide pandemic by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on March 11th 2020, before the UK was put into lockdown on the 23rd March 2020. Organisations had to reconsider their policies and procedures to allow their businesses to continue. This paper focuses on the effects of COVID-19 that the UK construction sector has had to undertake to enable businesses whilst employees had to adhere to COVID-19 lockdown rules. In addition, how the sector can positively continue once normality has returned within the industry. In doing so, this paper understands the historical issues within the construction sector and have had an effect during COVID-19. Design/methodology/approach A qualitative research methodology approach was taken to help obtain live information. In total, 19 semi-structured interviews from 15 organisations related to the construction sector were conducted to collect data. This information was evaluated using thematic analysis to arrive at the results, inferences and recommendations to the sector. Findings This research has revealed that companies have had to adopt a three-stage process to overcome a new dimensional challenge of COVID-19. These include: 1. Making quick decisions during the first stage of the pandemic. 2. Producing new policies and procedures to restart businesses enabling staff to return to workplace safely. 3. Implementing methods to future proof organisations against any potential pandemics. To help organisations to future proof their business five C’s are recommended. Originality/value This paper provides a rich insight into the understanding and awareness of the effects of COVID-19 and the changes that the construction sector has had to undertake in order to adhere to the lockdown rules whilst remaining productive. This research contributes towards informing policymakers on some of the lessons learnt during the management of the COVID-19 pandemic from a construction sector perspective.
CitationStride, M., Renukappa, S., Suresh, S. and Egbu, C. (2023) The effects of COVID-19 pandemic on the UK construction industry and the process of future-proofing business. Construction Innovation, Vol. 23 No. 1, pp. 105-128. https://doi.org/10.1108/CI-03-2021-0045
JournalConstruction Innovation: Information, Process, Management
DescriptionThis is an accepted manuscript of an article published by Emerald in Construction Innovation: Information, Process, Management on 31/12/2021. Available online at https://doi.org/10.1108/CI-03-2021-0045 The accepted version of the publication may differ from the final published version.
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/