Alleviating Skills Shortage Concerns within the UK Construction Industry
Since overcoming the recession period in the mid 2000’s the construction industry has had significant levels of growth and is an in demand sector within the UK’s economy. In order for the demand to be met by the Industry it requires a significant amount of skilled workforce to cope with the current great strides in growth. This is however creating a big concern within the industry as it is believed that the supply of skilled workforce will be unable to meet the demands which are set out and the construction industry is facing a barrier to progress further. The purpose of this study is to find possible solutions on how the ever growing skills shortage can be implemented and improved by identifying what the cause is behind the skills shortage is and what initiations are in place to overcome these at present. This research provides an overview of the skills within the UK construction industry and where the possible problems lie in terms of the ever growing skills shortage.
The author carried out research with the aid of literature which has been reviewed and carried this research further by conducting an interview to gain a view of professionals within the industry on the current situation and possible solutions. The main findings from the research were that the respondents believed a skills shortage existed within the industry and if the current situation were to continue then a barrier for the industry to grow would be faced in the near the future. The reasons which were gained from the research was mainly that the industry was not attractive enough to potential new recruits and the lack of opportunities to be a part of the sector are limited. The main conclusion from this study is that in order to overcome the current skills shortage problem within the UK, the industry needs to invest from within in order to enhance the attractions which could possibly attract new recruits within the industry.
Review where, why and how this problem has occurred
Examine the demand for the need of skilled workforce with in the industry
Identify methods in which the skilled workforce can be increased
Provide recommendations on how this problem can be resolved
2 – Shortage of Skills
Construction Industry Overview
CIOB Surveys in Skills Shortage
Changes in Policies
Construction Industry Training Board
3 – Research Methods
Qualitative and Quantitative Research
4 – Data Analysis and Discussion
Sample Size and Response Rate
Structure of Questionnaire
Review and Discussion of Questionnaire
Apprenticeships and Training
Discussion and Evaluation of Research
5 – Conclusions and Recommendations
Satisfying the Objectives
I do hope you enjoyed reading this post on Alleviating Skills Shortage Concerns within the UK Construction Industry. There are many other titles available in the construction dissertation collection that should be of interest to construction management students and building professionals. There are many dissertation titles that relate to other aspects of construction such as project management techniques, environmental management, building and construction methods to name a few. It took a lot of time to write this post and I would be grateful if you could share this post via Facebook and Twitter. Feel free to add your thoughts in the comments section. Thank you.
Title: Network Design – When implementing a network in an organisation, there are some design issues that must be considered before implementation. The requirements of the network must be clearly defined and all the network components to be used have to be clearly defined. Some of the considerations are discussed below.
Network Design and Network Architecture
Network architecture is the infrastructure consisting of software, transmission equipment, and communication protocols define the structural and logical layout of a computer network. The mode of transmission of a network can be wired or wireless depending on the requirements in an organisation. There are various types of networks that can be applied in an organisation depending on the network size. Local area network (LAN) refers to network in a small geographical area, Metropolitan area network (MAN) refers to network in a city, and wide area network (WAN) refers to network that is spread geographically in a wide area. Among the three types of network, the company would implement LAN since it is only covering a small geographical area.
The transmission medium of a network can be wired or wireless. Wired medium involve use of coaxial cables or fiber-optic cables while wireless media involves wireless transmission of data. Depending on the bandwidth, throughput and goodput we are able to determine the best medium of transmission. Fiber optic cables have low signal loss since they avoid collision, and they are efficient in data transfer in high traffic networks. Coaxial cables are less expensive compared with fiber optic cables, but they have high signal loss caused by collisions. Wireless transmission is efficient in local area network where there are few computers.
Network Design Management Method
The management method of a network can be either peer to peer or client-server. Peer to peer is where there is communication between several computers without a central computer. Client-server is where each client is independent and a central server provides services to the clients. In a peer to peer network, many computers can share a single application installed in one computer. In a client-server, they are designed to support large number of clients where the clients do not share resources. The client-server model security is enhanced because security is handled by the server. It is also easy to upgrade a client server model to meet new requirements in an organisation.
Figure 1, a client server model
Network topology is divided into physical and logical topology. Physical topology refers to the way in which computers and other devices are connected. Logical topology describes the layout of data transmission in a network. Bus, ring, star and mesh topologies are the main types of topologies. Bus topology is a where all devices are connected with a single cable. The topology works for small networks, but it is slow and collisions are common. Ring topology is where the cable runs around where each node is connected to each other. There are fewer collisions compared with a bus topology. A token ring is used to avoid collision. In a star topology, all the devices are connected to a central hub. There is a central management making it is faster in upgrading, but failure of the central hub brings down the entire network. Mesh topology connects all the devices to each other for fault tolerance and redundancy to improve performance.
Network Design Security Requirements
Networks are frequently attacked by hackers and other malicious people. This makes security one of the key considerations when designing a network. To reduce the number of attacks on computer networks, the network should have firewalls, intrusion detection systems, VPN, and DMZ. These measures reduce the threat and detect malicious people in the network.
This refers to the ability of the network to grow. The network should be scalable enough to cater for growth in the network infrastructure.
Network Address Translation (NAT)
This is a design consideration where many computers in a private network access the network using one public IP address. This is a measure to enhance security in a network.
Figure 2, Network architecture
Figure 3, Showing how VPN is implemented
OSI Reference Model in Network Design
The OSI model has seven layers as highlighted in the diagram. The communication system is sub-dived into layers where each layer sends service requests to the layer below it and receives service requests from the layer above it (FitzGerald & Dennis, 2009).
Layer 1: Physical Layer
Physical layer refers to the hardware and all network devices used in the network. The layer defines the physical devices and the transmission medium. The layer receives service requests of the data-link layer and performs encoding and decoding of data in signals. Protocols in this layer include CSMA/CD, and Ethernet (Liu, 2009).
Layer 2: Data-Link Layer
Data-link layer receives service requests of the network layer and sends service requests to the physical layer. The main function of the data-link layer is to provide reliable delivery of data across networks. Other functions performed by the layer include framing, flow and error control, and error detection and correction. There are two sub layers of the data-link layer; media access control layer, and logical link control layer. Media access control performs frame parsing, data encapsulation and frame assembly. Logical link control is responsible for error checking, flow control and packet synchronisation. Protocols in this layer include; X 25, frame relay and ATM.
Layer 3: Network Layer
Network layer is responsible for managing all the network connections, network congestions, and packet routing between a source and destination. The layer receives service requests of the transport layer and sends service requests to the data-link layer. The main protocols in this layer are IP, ICMP, and IGMP.
Layer 4: Transport Layer
The main purpose of this layer is to provide reliable data delivery which is error free by performing error detection and correction. The layer ensures that there is no loss of data, and data is received as it was sent. The layer provides either connection-less or connection oriented service. There are two protocols in this layer: UDP and TCP.
Acknowledgements and windowing flow control
No reliable delivery
No acknowledgements and no windowing flow control
Layer 5: Session Layer
The main purpose of this layer is to establish and terminate sessions. The layer sets up and terminates connection between two or more processes. It also manages communication between hosts. If there is login or password validation, this layer is responsible for the validation process. Check-pointing mechanism is also provided by this layer. If an error occurs, re-transmission of data occurs from the last check-point. Protocols in this layer include; RIP, SOCKS, and SAP.
Layer 6: Presentation Layer
This layer is responsible for data manipulation, data compression and decompression, and manages how data is presented. The layer receives service requests of the application layer and sends service requests to the session layer. The layer is concerned with the syntax and semantics of the data in transmission. Data encryption and decryption (cryptography) is used to provide security in this layer. Protocols involved in this layer include; ASCII, EBCDIC, MIDI, MPEG, and JPEG.
Layer 7: Application Layer
This layer provides interaction with the end user and provides services such as file and email transfers. The layer sends service requests to the presentation layer. It has several protocols used in communication; FTP, HTTP, SMTP, DNS, TFTP, NFS, and TELNET.
Ethernet – provides transfer of information on Ethernet cable between physical locations
Serial Line Internet Protocol (SLIP) – used for data encapsulation in serial lines.
Point to point protocol (PPP) – this is an improvement of SLIP, performs data encapsulation of serial lines.
Internet Protocol (IP) – provides routing, fragmentation and assembly of packets.
Internet Control Management protocol (ICMP) – help manage errors while sending packets and data between computers.
Address resolution protocol (ARP) – provides a physical address given an IP address.
Transport control protocol (TCP) – provides connection oriented and reliable delivery of packets.
User datagram protocol (UDP) – provides connection-less oriented service and unreliable delivery of packets.
Domain name service (DNS) – provides a domain name related to a given IP address.
Dynamic host configuration protocol (DHCP) – used in the management and control of IP addresses in a given network.
Internet group management protocol (IGMP) – support multi-casting.
Simple network management protocol (SNMP) – manages all network elements based on data sent and received.
Routing information protocol (RIP) – routers use RIP to exchange routing information in an internetwork.
File transfer protocol (FTP) – standard protocol for transferring files between hosts over a TCP based network.
Simple mail transfer protocol (SMTP) – standard protocol for transferring mails between two servers.
Hypertext transfer protocol (HTTP) – standard protocol for transferring documents over the World Wide Web.
Telnet – a protocol for accessing remote computers.
Figure 5 shows the TCP/IP architecture
Layer 1: Network Access Layer
This layer is responsible for placing TCP/IP packet into the medium and receiving the packets off the medium. This layer control hardware and network devices used in the network. Network access layer combines the physical and data-link layer of the OSI model.
Layer 2: Internet Layer
It functions as the network layer in the OSI model. The layer performs routing, addressing and packet addressing in the network (Donahoo & Calvert, 2009).
Layer 3: Transport Layer
The layer has the same functions as the transport layer in the OSI model. The main function of this layer is to provide reliable data delivery which is error free. The layer receives service requests of the application layer and sends service requests to the internet layer.
Layer 4: Application Layer
This is the layer that has applications that perform functions to the user. It combines the application, presentation and session layers of the OSI model.
TCP/IP Commands Used To Troubleshoot Network Problems
There are many TCP/IP commands that can be used to show that there is a break in communication. The commands are: PING, TRACERT, ARP, IPCONFIG, NETSTAT, ROUTE, HOSTNAME, NBSTAT, and NETSH.
Hostname is used to display and show the host name of the computer
Arp is used for editing and viewing of ARP cache.
Ping is used to send ICMP echo to test the reachability of a network
Event viewer shows all the records of errors and events.
Donahoo, M. J., & Calvert, K. L. (2009). TCP/IP sockets in C: Practical guide for programmers. Amsterdam: Morgan Kaufmann.
Fall, K. R., & Stevens, W. R. (2012). TCP/IP illustrated. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Addison-Wesley.
FitzGerald, J., & Dennis, A. (2009). Business Data Communications and Network Design. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley.
Leiden, C., & Wilensky, M. (2009). TCP – IP. Hoboken: For Dummies
Liu, D. (2009). Next generation SSH2 Network Design and Implementation: Securing data in motion. Burlington, MA: Syngress Pub.
Odom, W. (2004). Computer networking first-step. Indianapolis, Ind: Cisco.
Ouellet, E., Padjen, R., Pfund, A., Fuller, R., & Blankenship, T. (2002). Building a Cisco Wireless LAN and Network Design. Rockland, MA: Syngress Pub.
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Investigating the Impact of “Price” As a Positioning Factor in the UK Supermarket Industry: A Study of Tesco
Dissertation Topic: Price Positioning in the UK Supermarket Industry. Tesco is currently the market leader in the UK retail industry (and has been since 1995), since the launch of the Tesco Clubcard. It has been claimed that Tesco has created customer loyalty by introducing the Clubcard. However, it is possible that the Clubcard does not necessarily create loyalty; rather, it helps the company to understand and predict customer behaviour, and to an extent, influence customer behaviour through various price deals and offers.
It has been established that customer loyalty can certainly improve the probability that an organisation’s profits will increase. In the case of Tesco, loyalty has not actually been created although the company has established a way of predicting and influencing consumer behaviour (to an extent) through the loyalty card. Since customer satisfaction is one of the key ingredients that contributes towards customer loyalty, it can be said that at the moment, Waitrose, Aldi, and Lidl are at a better position to create customer loyalty, for whatever reasons.
Customers generally do not differentiate the companies based on the prices they offer, rather, they differentiate the products based on the perceived quality. The problem is that companies such as Tesco, Morrisons, and ASDA have similar price structures, and as such, pricing may not be the point of difference for the consumers. Tesco’s positioning on the basis of price (every little helps) may not help the company to gain a significant advantage over the competitors, although it may contribute to maintaining this advantage.
Based on the assumption that pricing is not the factor by which consumers differentiate companies, the following research objectives have been composed:
To analyse the extent to which pricing is a differentiating factor (as seen by the customer) that influences consumer buying behaviour in the supermarket industry
To identify whether price positioning (as seen by the customer) is a viable option for supermarkets
1 – Introduction
Statement of the Problem
2 – Research Methodology
The Research Philosophy
Position on Philosophy
Data Collection Techniques
Sampling and Population
Focus Group Interviews
Scope and Limitations
Gaining Access and Research Ethics
3 – Literature Review
Price Image Dimensions
Price as a Market Cue
Ego-involvement and Price
Price and Retail Patronage
Price Premiums and Brand Equity
Role of Price in Strategic Positioning
Expectation Theory in Consumer Behaviour
Henry Assael Model
4 – Discussion and Analysis
Qualitative Research Report and Analysis
Quantitative Research Report and Analysis
Discussion on the Findings
Is price a differentiator in the supermarket industry?
Is the low end price position viable for retailers?
I hope you enjoyed reading this post on the Impact of “Price” As a Positioning Factor and how it affects the UK Supermarket Industry. There are many other titles available in the marketing dissertation collection that should be of interest to marketing students and practitioners. There are many dissertation titles that relate to other aspects of marketing such as branding, corporate advertising, marketing strategy and consumerism to name a few. I would be grateful if you could share this post via Facebook and Twitter. Feel free to add your thoughts in the comments section. Thank you.
The Importance of Experience in Project Managers when Managing Project Complexity – A Study into the UAE
Traditionally, the success of a project lays on the shoulders of project managers and its achievement is constantly measured by the properties of cost, time and quality, which appear to be a simple way of measuring within the construction industry. Interest for project management is becoming fundamental. Yet, projects keep on failing at an astounding rate. This research has investigated the education level of project managers in managing project complexity, by understanding the current educational level of project managers and also to understand whether advanced education is required before achieving the designation of project manager.
This dissertation also investigates the leadership qualities and skills required for project manager to handle complex project. This research was done in 2 steps; first step of the research is to review the literature. The literature review consists of project success, complexity, background experience, skills, leadership qualities and education. Second step is to conduct an online survey by preparing 20 questions and is sent to 50 selected project managers and directors of different companies and sectors. Out of 50, 31 responded to the survey.
After analyzing the results from survey, it was found that most of the project managers have not achieved any advanced education before achieving the designation and their current education emphasized more on engineering – technical aspects and less on management aspects. The project managers who had advanced education were given more importance to hard skills (which are scope, time, quality and cost) and soft skills (which are communication, social, conflict management, etc.).
In this dissertation, many project managers had different view on project complexity. However, most of them stated that the factors relating to complexity are due to financial problems, uncertain designs and no proper construction details. Finally, the dissertation has been concluded by saying that advanced education is required for project manager to manage uncertainty and complexity. However having experience is one of the most important factors in addition with education for project success.
To investigate the educational level in project managers and to understand their abilities in adapting with change in project complexity
To understand the skills and experience needed to become a project manager and for project success
To measure project success in complexity
To understand the leadership qualities required for project success
1 – Introduction
2 – Project Success
3 – Complexity
Complexity in Construction
Measuring complexity in construction
4 – Project Manager’s Experience and Skills Required for Project Success
Project Manager’s Experience
Project management skills
Required skills for managing complexity
5 – Leadership in Project Managers for Project Success
Leadership in Construction Industry
Different Leadership challenges faced in Complexity
Leadership Styles and Competencies in Construction
Political skills, Leadership and Project success
Modern Leadership in Construction Industry
6 – Education for Project Managers
Challenges faced in project management training and education
Evolution of project management and project managers
Approaches in educating project managers
Advanced training in educating project manager
7 – Research Methodology and Design
8 – Data Results and Analysis
9 – Conclusion and Recommendations
I do hope you enjoyed reading this post on Importance of Experience in Project Managers when Managing Project Complexity. There are many other titles available in the construction dissertation collection that should be of interest to construction management students and building professionals. There are many dissertation titles that relate to other aspects of construction such as project management techniques, environmental management, building and construction methods to name a few. It took a lot of time to write this post and I would be grateful if you could share this post via Facebook and Twitter. Feel free to add your thoughts in the comments section. Thank you.
Causes and Determinants of Real Estate Bubbles in China – A Study into Beijing
The real estate market of Beijing is under investigation in order to find whether there is a potential housing bubble in China. Housing bubble as a phenomenon will be analyzed. Furthermore, the residential market of China and whether various programs for the housing policy affect housing market are presented, especially during the period 1998-2014. The Ηukou registration system gives interesting information about the housing market, the central government’s policy, and its reaction and ability to cope with a housing bubble. Ηukou registration number defines whether an individual comes from a rural or an urban area, as well as the locality.
The urban and rural residents with agricultural or non agricultural Ηukou have different rights, and thus different chances for housing, especially in large metropolitan areas like Beijing. The connection of the four state owned banks with the housing market and their reaction to the house price changes during our period of interest is analyzed. The banks reacted without taking into account the risk, because they think that they are too big to fail. Volatility is also analyzed because it is important to find the reasons behind the changes in house prices. House price volatility forces households to buy a house to live in so that they could avoid the fluctuations in house prices, and a potential price increase. Regions in Beijing do not have the same property characteristics and potentials for a real estate bubble.
The results from the research of the secondary data are presented, with some final discussion. The answer for a housing bubble in Beijing is not crystal clear. Various findings support the existence of a bubble and some others do not. Although Beijing and regions in Beijing show a house price trend above the equilibrium price, the political status quo is special. In addition, it depends on the way data are collected, the availability of data, as well as their validity. It also depends on whether we have unclear property rights, housing inequality, and not a wide freedom of choice for the households.
While there are many factors that contribute to the formation of housing bubbles, as it is a very complex phenomenon, the present dissertation is focused on some important issues revealed from the literature review. Specifically, the above hypothesis is tested considering the following issues:
The correlation between potential real estate bubble and changes in housing prices in Beijing
The correlation between potential real estate bubble and housing prices volatility in Beijing
The role that the banking sector plays to the potential real estate bubble in Beijing
The readiness of Chinese authorities to deal with a Real Estate bubble
The so far reaction of Chinese authorities to imbalances and housing price volatility
The correlation between the residential market in China and Beijing and a potential real estate bubble
The correlation between the Hukou system in China and a potential real estate bubble
Housing Bubble Dissertation Contents
Aim and Objectives
2: Literature Review – Housing Bubbles
Definition of Bubbles
3: Literature Review – The Role of House Prices and Volatility
Changes in Housing Prices
4: Literature Review – The Role of the Banking Sector
The Banking Sector in China
5: Literature Review – The Role of Chinese Authorities
Government Involvement in Urban Housing
6: Literature Review – Residential Market in China and Beijing
Residential Market in China and Beijing – A Historical Perspective
Housing Provident Fund (HPF)
Economical and Comfortable Housing Program (ECH)
Cheap Rental Housing Program (CRH)
7: Literature Review – Hukou Registration System
Description of Hukou Registration System
Housing Finance System
Inequality in Beijing
8: Research Methods
9: Data Analysis
Is There A Potential Real Estate Bubble In Beijing?
I do hope you enjoyed reading this post on Causes and Determinants of Real Estate Bubbles in China. There are many other titles available in the real estate dissertation collection that should be of interest to construction management students and building professionals. There are many dissertation titles that relate to other aspects of construction such as project management techniques, environmental management, building and construction methods to name a few. It took a lot of time to write this post and I would be grateful if you could share this post via Facebook and Twitter. Feel free to add your thoughts in the comments section. Thank you.