Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of virtual team in Nigerian construction industry

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The rationale behind any construction project varies; it might be to achieve value, time, quality, cost or just satisfaction for the client. Irrespective of any or all of these reasons, the team members involved in conception, inception, construction and delivery of a project are aware that a good teamwork is of essence. This is in the context of growing needs of client and the ever-growing improvement in methods of project delivery as influenced by technology. This article looks into the team type in the Nigerian construction industry from the angle of a virtual team (VT) using the mixed-method research design. VT is simply a type of team wherein the members operate from different geographical regions and function majorly with the aid of information and communications technology media. Data for the study were collected from relevant literature, interviews were conducted with 20 selected professionals in the construction industry and, thereafter, a questionnaire was drafted from the results of the interviews and administered to selected relevant professionals. The study revealed that communication among team members, flexibility of operation and decision making are usually the most influencing strengths of the VT, while some of its weaknesses are a need for special training, conflict among team members and client’s acceptance of team type. Reduction in time-to-market, collaboration ability of team members and delivery time of project were seen as opportunities, while recognized threats were members’ performance level and complexity of technical application. The study concludes that the success of the VT depends highly on exploiting the opportunities opened to it.

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