Demographic characteristics of experts

A list of project managers, academics and industry professionals who were believed to have significant knowledge and expertise on M&E of construction projects was identified from the Ghanaian construction industry. An initial number of 20 experts consented to participate; hence, 20 Delphi questionnaires were sent out for the Delphi Round One. Thirteen responded to Round One while 11 returned Round Two. An attrition rate of 45% was recorded. This represents an 85% response rate. However, a cumulative 55% response rate was achieved over the initial 20 experts identified for the study.

The educational levels of experts indicate 73% had a Master’s degree while 27% had a PhD degree in construction-related fields of study. Experts for the study belonged to various recognized professional bodies in the country. Specifically, about 46% were professional members of the Ghana Institution of Surveyors, while representatives of the GIA and the GhIE constituted 27% each.

Experts had substantial years of experience of working in the construction industry. About 46% of experts had between 6 and 10 years’ working experience in the construction industry. A total of 27% of the experts also had between 11 and 15 years’ experience while 27% had over 16 years of experience in the industry. All experts had been involved in construction project delivery at the metropolitan, municipal and district assembly (MMDA) level in Ghana, either as consultants or builders (contractors). Finally, experts were drawn from diverse institutions in the construction industry. Lecturers at universities constituted about 46%, with research institutions and the construction industry represented by 27% each.

Delphi-specific objectives

The literature reviewed revealed sets of attribute and sub-attributes which may influence effective M&E implementation in the Ghanaian construction industry. The identified attributes used to determine effective M&E implementation in the Ghanaian construction industry cut across both developed and developing countries and from other fields such as agriculture and health. A factor or attribute rated high/low influence or agreement based on the extent to which the listed attribute may affect M&E implementation in the Ghanaian construction industry. An ordinal scale rating from 1 to 10 (1 = “low influence” or “strongly disagree” or “low impact” and 10 = “high influence”, “strongly agree” or “high impact”) was utilized. The levels of influence and impact were therefore obtained as the product of the achievement of consensus. Experts were provided with the group median response and their response from the Delphi Round One study. This was to afford experts the opportunity to review their ratings if they were convinced to do so as follows, namely to accept the group MEDIAN, maintain their ORIGINAL response or indicate a NEW response. Also, experts were encouraged to provide reasons when their responses were 10% or one unit above or below the group median response on the agreement, influence and impact scale and also to rate new issues identified from the Delphi Round One study.

Consensus here has been categorized into three scales: strong consensus, good consensus and weak consensus. The scales are presented as follows:

i Strong consensus: median 9-10, mean 8-10, IQD < 1 and > 80% (8-10)

ii Good consensus: median 7-8.99, mean 6-7.99, IQD > 1.1 <2 and > 60% < 79% (6-7.99)

iii Weak consensus: median < 6.99, mean < 5.99 and IQD >2.1 <3 and < 59% (5.99)

The impact scale was also categorized as follows:

i VHL9-10

ii HI: 7-8.99

iii MI: 3-6.99

The need for and relevance of M&E in the Ghanaian construction industry

The need for and relevance of M&E in the Ghanaian construction industry are determined. The following five questions were asked in this regard:

i Is M&E a relevant project management tool in achieving project success in the Ghanaian construction industry?

ii Does the Ghanaian construction industry have an M&E Policy Framework document for construction project M&E?

iii Does the Ghanaian construction industry require an M&E Policy Framework to guide M&E practice in construction project delivery?

iv Should an M&E Policy Framework be made a responsive criterion for the selection of project consultants and contractors in the GCI?

v Should organizations establish a separate M&E unit to monitor and report on project implementation?

From Table 12.1, out of the five questions asked, four issues were agreed upon with three of them achieving consensus by experts recording median ratings between

Table 12.1 Availability, need for and relevance of M&E

Questions

Median

Mean

Std. Dev.

IQD

M&E is a relevant project management tool in achieving project success in the Ghanaian construction industry.

8.0

8.09

0.30

0.0

The Ghanaian construction industry DOES NOT have an M&E Policy Framework document for construction project M&E.

10.0

9.36

2.11

0.0

The Ghanaian construction industry requires an M&E Policy Framework to guide M&E practice in construction project delivery.

9.0

8.73

0.9

0.0

An M&E Policy Framework document should he made a responsive criterion for selecting project consultants and contractors in the GCI.

9.0

9.00

3.61

1.5

Organizations should establish a separate M&E unit to monitor and report on project implementation.

9.0

8.45

1.13

1.0

9 and 10 and the IQD between 0 and 1 (IQD < 0.0), respectively. Though it was agreed amongst experts for an M&E policy framework document to be made a responsive criterion for the selection of project consultants in the GCI recording a median score of 9.0 which indicates high agreement among experts, consensus was not achieved based on the IQD score of 1.5. On the other hand, experts averagely agreed that M&E was a relevant project management tool in achieving project success in the Ghanaian construction industry based on the median score of 8.0, but reached a unanimous consensus when it recorded an IQD score of 0.0 and a standard deviation score of 0.30.

Findings suggest that M&E is significantly needed and relevant for implementation in the GCI. This position was found to be consistent with the need for M&E in other industries and the cultural context for achieving project success (Barasa, 2014; Kamau & Mohamed, 2015). Specifically, on the five main questions asked to answer the Delphi study question 1, experts agreed that M&E is a relevant project management tool in achieving project success in the Ghanaian construction industry. This position was found to support the study by Kamau and Mohamed (2015) when they studied the efficacy of M&E functions in achieving project success in Kenya. Further, experts unanimously agreed that the Ghanaian construction industry lacks an M&E policy framework to guide the M&E implementation of projects and, therefore, its importance in supporting the achievement of project success.

The first step to institutionalize M&E is to establish an M&E unit at organizational and institutional levels in Ghana where infrastructure development is targeted and supported with funding from central government and donor agencies. The establishment of M&E units at the institution or organizational level to monitor and report on project implementation was expressly agreed by experts for the study. The need to establish M&E units at organizations is supported by the study by Abrahams (2015) to facilitate close supervision to ensure project success. In a different observation, even though the use of an M&E policy framework as a responsive criterion in selecting project consultants (M&E specialists) and contractors in the GO was highly agreed upon by experts, obtaining a median score of 9.0, consensus was not achieved for such requirements to be executed as it recorded an IQD of 1.5 which is above the cut-off for the study. Hence, the variableness amongst experts on the statement is explained in the high standard deviation score of 3.61.

 
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