Academic Studies: Driving Innovation in the Construction Industry

Academic Studies: Driving Innovation in the Construction Industry

Academic studies detailing how SCIRT used KPIs to drive innovation.

Traditionally, the construction sector has not encouraged innovation as enthusiastically as some other sectors. Recognising the unique nature of the Christchurch rebuild, and the critical importance of innovation to improving productivity, SCIRT used its performance management system to drive innovation at all levels of the SCIRT programme.

SCIRT used a sophisticated Innovation Key Performance Indicator (KPI) that fed directly into the delivery teams' work allocation and ultimately their financial rewards, to incentivise innovation and improve performance. More than 600 innovations were implemented as a result of this strategy.

Here we look at three academic studies, an associated presentation and one article on the innovations developed by SCIRT.

The first study, conducted by BRANZ, the University of Auckland and Constructing Excellence New Zealand, looked at the use of KPIs by a number of organisations, including SCIRT. It attempted to create a baseline to understand challenges or success factors that could impact on performance in the medium to long-term.

The second examines the relationship between innovation and productivity improvement in the construction industry. This study applied a classification system to the database that recorded the innovations with the aim of assisting future alliances to maximise their productivity. This paper and the associated presentation were delivered at the Building a Better New Zealand (BBNZ 2014) Conference.

The third report was created by the University of Canterbury Quake Centre and the University of Auckland, funded by the Building Research Levy. It shows how SCIRT initiated and managed an innovation process throughout its programme of works following the Canterbury earthquakes.