TASK/STAFFING-TECHNOLOGY FIT IN CONSTRUCTION SCHEDULING
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Construction managers use scheduling methods such as the critical path method (CPM) and linear scheduling methods (LSM) to improve the outcome of their project. CPM is a popular scheduling method that is mostly based on precedence relationships and the identification of the longest path through a network. LSMs are based on a continuous flow of resources and are used mostly on projects that exhibit repetitive characteristics. Despite the many obvious advantages of CPM, its use in construction has been limited. LSMs are much less frequently used than CPM, although the general consensus is that LSMs are quite effective in projects composed of activities of repetitive nature. Understanding the reasons why these methods are not used as extensively as expected could improve their level of acceptance in the construction industry. The link between construction scheduling methods and the tasks expected to be performed by schedulers has been an on-going concern in the construction industry. The link between construction scheduling methods and the capabilities of the scheduling staff has also been an important issue. This study proposes a combined task/staffing-technology fit model to understand why CPM and LSM are not used as extensively as expected in construction scheduling: (1) a task-technology fit model that aims to measure the extent to which a construction scheduling method functionally matches the tasks expected to be performed by the scheduling staff; (2) a staffing-technology fit model that aims to measure the extent to which a construction scheduling method matches the staff`s experience, know-how and capabilities. The models that are proposed are an answer to the lack of proper instruments for evaluating the extent to which scheduling methods are used in the industry. A questionnaire survey was administered to professionals listed in the directory of the Construction Management Association of America (CMAA) who have many years of experience in construction scheduling. Statistical analyses were performed to determine statistical significance of the differences between the level of agreement concerning task-technology fit and staffing-technology fit for CPM and LSM applications. Findings indicate that there are significant differences between the opinions of CPM users and LSM users. This means that task-technology fit is much different in CPM and LSM applications. Similarly, staffing-technology fit is also quite different in CPM and LSM applications.