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The disruptive factors and longevity effects of Covid-19 and Brexit on the SMEs construction supply chain in the UK

Oyegoke, AS, Fisher, BW, Ajayi, S, Omotayo, TS and Ewuga, D (2023) The disruptive factors and longevity effects of Covid-19 and Brexit on the SMEs construction supply chain in the UK. Journal of Financial Management of Property and Construction. ISSN 1366-4387

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Purpose Supply chain disruptions have a significant impact on overall project delivery. This study aims to identify the supply chain disruptive factors and develop a framework to mitigate the disruptive effects on the supply chain. Covid-19 and Brexit disruption and their longevity effects in the short, medium and long term on the supply chain are relied upon to develop the framework. Design/methodology/approach The study adopted a mixed-method approach with a sequential explanatory design. The main disruptive factors were identified through a literature review, and key factors were selected through a focus group exercise. A questionnaire survey was carried out to sample opinions from the practitioners; 41 questionnaires were received and analysed using the relative importance index (RII) method for ranking the factors and percentage frequency distribution to determine the longevity effects. Five follow-up semi-structured interviews were conducted over the telephone and later transcribed. Findings The results of Covid-19 disruption indicate that material cost increase ranked first (RII: 0.863), logistics cost increase and supply chain interaction ranked second and third, respectively. They have long-term, medium-term and short-term longevity effects, respectively. The lowest-rated factors were communication (RII: 0.561), staff shortages (RII: 0.629) and impact on relationships (RII: 0.639). The three most ranked Brexit disruptive factors are supply chain interaction (RII: 0.775), material cost increase (RII: 0.766) and logistic and haulage delay (RII: 0.717). The first two factors have long-term effects, and the logistics and haulage delays have a medium-term impact. The mitigating solutions suggested in the framework are collaborative working, stronger resilience to external forces and better transparency and communication that will lead to good relationships among the supply chain members. Researchlimitations/implications The scope of the study was limited to the UK construction industry; however, the pandemic effect on supply chain can serve as critical learning curve in other developed and developing countries. Practical implications The study will help the government and construction firms to understand the focal areas of importance in solving the supply chain disruption problems based on the effects of Brexit and Covid-19. The research would be useful in ensuring the proactive involvement of the government and contracting firms in their preparedness for similar events in the future. The results could be interpreted for critical learning in other developed/developing countries. Originality/value Identifying and ranking the supply chain disruptive factors affecting the small‐ and medium‐sized enterprises (SMEs) in the UK construction industry has been the focal point of this study. The study also proposes a simple but effective framework comprising the highly ranked factors, their longevity effects and mitigating measures. This will help the SMEs manage future/similar external events affecting the supply chain.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This author accepted manuscript is deposited under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC) licence. This means that anyone may distribute, adapt, and build upon the work for non-commercial purposes, subject to full attribution. If you wish to use this manuscript for commercial purposes, please contact permissions@emerald.com
Uncontrolled Keywords: 0905 Civil Engineering; 1202 Building
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HF Commerce > HF5001 Business
H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
H Social Sciences > HE Transportation and Communications
T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
Divisions: Civil Engineering & Built Environment
Publisher: Emerald
SWORD Depositor: A Symplectic
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2023 09:31
Last Modified: 18 Jul 2023 09:32
DOI or ID number: 10.1108/jfmpc-11-2022-0057
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/20382
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