Employer of Choise Characteristices in the Construction Industry Essay Example
Employer of Choise Characteristices in the Construction Industry Essay Example

Employer of Choise Characteristices in the Construction Industry Essay Example

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  • Pages: 5 (1121 words)
  • Published: May 18, 2018
  • Type: Article
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In their study, Sedighi and Loosemore examined the qualities of an Employer of Choice (EOC) within the construction industry. The focus was on addressing recruitment and retention challenges faced by employers, including concerns related to an aging population, skill shortages, and increased labor competition across sectors (Sedighi & Loosemore, 2012). The objective was to identify the key workplace attributes that are crucial for construction management graduates. This understanding would contribute to defining what constitutes an EOC in terms of attracting and retaining graduates.

Sedighi and Loosemore utilized an electronic survey as their research method for this article. The survey involved participants rating 26 EOC criteria on a seven point ordinal Likert scale, which ranged from unimportant to important. Participants were also asked five separate questions regarding gender, work experience, workplace size, type of course, and


year of study. To conduct the survey, 76 heads of programs in Australia and the United Kingdom were contacted, and they distributed the survey to over 400 students. Ultimately, 160 student responses were collected from 26 universities.

The use of an electronic survey strategy is highly effective for conducting research among universities in Australia and the United Kingdom, despite not being original. Sedighi and Loosemore's research is focused on identifying important workplace characteristics for graduate construction management students. These characteristics include strong work relationships, opportunities for learning on the job, and a work environment that is enthusiastic about their work.

In their study, Sedighi and Loosemore used a structured electronic survey to investigate the preferences of construction management graduates for EOC characteristics. They chose this research method because it allowed them to gather quantitative data

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through 'closed' questions. This enabled them to draw statistical conclusions about the graduates entering the construction industry. The survey asked respondents to rate specific EOC characteristic criteria, which were all based on relevant literature on EOC.

The researchers conducted a thorough analysis of various subgroups in the sample, such as gender or work experience level, by incorporating quantitative data. This examination revealed slight discrepancies in their responses. In contrast, utilizing a qualitative survey to inquire about participants' most valued EOC characteristics would have made analysis more challenging and could have yielded different research results.

The participants may have had difficulty expressing their preferences and understanding their own values because of their level of work experience. This lack of clarity was likely influenced by a variety of factors. To ensure a diverse group of respondents from Australia and the UK, Sedighi and Loosemore opted to use an online application as it is the most efficient method.

The decision to use an online application for the survey enabled convenient and efficient delivery and return of the surveys, while also offering a user-friendly reminder system. Online surveys have proven to be a more affordable method compared to postal surveys when collecting data from a large sample. Sedighi and Loosemore reached out to 76 heads of programmes in Australia and the UK to conduct the survey and gather their sample group. These heads of programmes subsequently distributed the surveys electronically to more than 400 students, who then completed the survey online.

In order to increase the number of graduate responses, Sedighi and Loosemore employed a strategy (Groves, 2009) that offered a financial incentive of an

iPad2 to a randomly chosen respondent. To further enhance the response rate, they made the survey concise and limited it to two pages. They also ensured that the questions were closed-ended, requiring minimal time to answer. Additionally, they guaranteed anonymity to the respondents and their responses. Consequently, a total of 160 responses (40%) were received, which is consistent with other similar studies on graduates (OCPE, 2006; AAGE, 2011).

Sedighi and Loosemore carried out a preliminary survey with a limited number of graduates prior to distributing the primary survey in order to ensure proper survey methodology. The survey consisted of 26 EOC criteria, sourced from relevant literature on EOC, and participants were asked to rate their importance using a seven-point Likert scale. Furthermore, five separate questions were included to collect data about the respondents' subgroup characteristics, such as gender, work experience, workplace size, course type, and current year of study. This data provided the opportunity for more comprehensive analysis.

The Likert scale was employed in the survey to gather precise data on EOC preferences. This scale enabled respondents to evaluate their preferences on a seven-point scale, varying from unimportant to important. By utilizing this method, Sedighi and Loosemore were able to compare preferences among various respondent groups without imposing positions they did not hold (Garland, 2001).

The Likert scale in surveys has the advantage of producing a consistent response of preferences, ensuring that a uniform attitude is measured and the data's reliability is high (Burns, 1996; De Vaus, 2002). Sedighi and Loosemore further ensured accuracy by defining terms like 'good quality working relationships' and 'high pay' or 'income'. To analyze the survey data,

Sedighi and Loosemore assigned a score out of 7 for each of the 26 EOC criteria, based on the frequency of ratings for importance.

The variable 'good quality working relationships' was rated as 'important' by 62% of the respondents, with a score of 7, which is equivalent to a score of 4.77. Based on this score, all criteria were ranked accordingly. The means of all criteria were also analyzed and the standard deviation of each variable was calculated to determine the level of agreement among respondents. Furthermore, independent t-tests were conducted on the collected data to compare responses from different subgroups within the sample group, such as gender and work experience.

In their research, Sedighi and Loosemore found that there were differences in response from subgroups. They recommended that recruitment strategies for male and female graduates should be slightly different. Through a structured online survey and statistical analysis, they collected quantitative data and concluded that the top three important characteristics for university students regarding EOC are good quality of working relationships, ability to learn on the job, and a passionate workplace. Surprisingly, this research method is not commonly used in construction management research. In a review of articles published in the journal Construction Management and Economics during 2012 and 2013, around 85% did not include conducting a survey.

Research in the construction industry primarily depends on economic factors, leading to a focus on analyzing existing economic data and trends collected by other organizations. Consequently, authors are less likely to conduct survey-based research.

Despite not diminishing the effectiveness of survey based research methods, it implies that surveying is better suited for researching

human factors like values, preferences, and workplace strategies, which constitute a smaller portion of construction management research. From October 2012 to March 2013, the Construction Management and Economics journal published a total of 56 articles across six volumes. Out of these 56 articles, seven utilized surveys as a research method.

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