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I: Performance management and measurement

Project management


Project management is a broad function that entails project performance measurement and assessment. Therefore, project activities, resources and processes in the construction industry require to be assessed and measured effectively to ensure that success factors are achieved. However, little attention has been given to monitoring and evaluation (M&E) as a performance management and measurement tool. The first chapter of this book is dedicated to contextualize M&E in the project management literature as a performance management and measurement tool. Technologies such as drones and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), building information modelling (B1M) and geographical information systems (GIS) have been discussed and the advantage of adapting them by the construction industry to effectively and efficiently monitor and evaluate the construction process and activities presented.


The construction industry in many economies serves a critical role in its development trajectory. It is an industry that brings together several other industries, i.e. automobile, manufacturing, etc., under its umbrella, hence very pivotal in the development of other sub-sectors and industries in the economy. The employment generation and creation of the industry are great since it is more labor-intensive as compared to other industry (Kim, Kim, Shin, & Kim, 2015, p. 1534). Its ultimate role in the contribution to the gross domestic product (GDP) has gained recognition in most budget readings of most countries across the globe. According to Mazhar & Arain (2015, p. 434), the construction industry’s contribution to the global share of the GDP is estimated around 15%. Considering the potential contribution of the industry to economic development, it is imperative to ensure that the inputs (resources), activities and processes are managed efficiently and effectively. This can he achieved via the effective implementation of monitoring and evaluation (M&E) which seeks to manage and measure performance of the project throughout the lifecycle of the project (Tengan & Aigbavboa, 2016; Tengan & Aigbavboa, 2018). This chapter therefore, seeks to elevate M&E in the project management discourse while presenting innovative and emerging technologies in assessing and measuring project performance.

Project performance management

In construction, project management has been defined by Fewings (2005, p. 11) as the “...planning, monitoring and control of all aspects of a project and the motivation of all those involved to achieve the project objectives on time and to cost, quality and performance”. Further, the Project Management Institute (PM1, 2013) describes project management as the art of directing and coordinating human and material resources through the life of a project using contemporary management techniques in order to achieve set goals such as scope, cost, time, quality and participant satisfaction. The impact of PM practice on the outcome of projects has made the discipline seen as a key competence and the most sought-after career choice for many organizations in the world today both in the private and public sectors. PM skills and competencies are therefore necessary for project actors in the construction process to effectively deal with all conceived challenges and project risk ensuring that projects are initiated and closed rightly. PM has also been defined by many scholars and researchers in literature providing characteristics as they may apply to the specific fields and industry. PM practices employ performance measurement and assessment techniques such as M&E, to ensure project cost, quality and time are achieved.

In the literature, project performance management encompasses performance assessment and measurement which most often have been used to mean the same. It should, however, be noted that there exist some apparent differences between the two terminologies. According to Amaratunga et al. (2002) and Hwang & Lim (2013) performance measurement provides a set of indicators for measuring the outcome/output of daily operations, whereas performance assessment is the process of evaluating the actual performance against the set standard (Myeda & Pitt, 2012). In assessing and measuring project performance, a number of tools or models are employed in the construction industry to ensure effective M&E. This includes the Total Quality Management (TQM), the Balance Scorecard (BSC), the Key Performance Indicators (KPI), the Just-in-Time (JIT) model and the Six-Sigma. The purpose of each model, tool or system is to improve on the current performance in project activities. Similarly, the M&E tool or system ensures that set targets (KPI) are achieved, hence improving performance. M&E integrates various aspects of the project life cycle such as inputs, activities, output and outcomes to achieve success.

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