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Factors affecting perceived level of virtuality in hybrid construction project teams (HCPTs) A qualitative study
journal contributionposted on 2016-01-01, 00:00 authored by M Reza Hosseini, N Chileshe, B Baroudi, J Zuo, Anthony MillsAnthony Mills
Deploying hybrid construction project teams (HCPTs) in which the common pattern of interactions is a blend of face-to-face and virtual communications has been increasingly gaining momentum in the construction context. Evidence has demonstrated that effectiveness of HCPTs is affected by a perceived level of virtuality, i.e. the perception of distance and boundaries between members where teams shift towards working virtually as opposed to purely collocated teams. This study aims to provide an integrated model of the factors affecting perceived virtuality in HCPTs, to address the conspicuous absence of studies on virtuality in the construction context.
An a priori list of factors extracted from existing literature on virtuality was subjected to the scrutiny of 17 experts with experiences of working in HCPTs through semi-structured interviews. Nvivo 10 was deployed for analysing the interview transcripts.
The findings outline the factors affecting virtuality in HCPTs and map the patterns of their associations as an integrated model. This leads to discovering a number of novel factors, which exert moderating impacts upon perceived virtuality in HCPTs.
The findings assist managers and practitioners dealing with any form of HCPTs (including building information modelling-based networks and distributed design teams) in identifying the variables manipulating the effectiveness of their teams. This enables them of designing more effective team arrangements.
As the first empirical study on virtuality in the construction context, this paper contributes to the sphere by conceptualising and contextualising the concept of virtuality in the construction industry. The study presents a new typology for the factors affecting perceived virtuality by categorising them into predictors and moderators.