University of Twente Student Theses


Towards 2040 : Scenario-based roadmapping in a Dutch construction company

Potters, Paul (2021) Towards 2040 : Scenario-based roadmapping in a Dutch construction company.

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Abstract:In order to effectively cope with the continuously changing environment in the housing construction industry and deal with mounting challenges, VolkerWessels could benefit from a dynamic strategic tool. The development and application of a tool to improve the strategic decision making process that can help the company in accomplishing its strategic goals. Based on this presumption, two research objectives are proposed. Objective 1: Develop a scenario based roadmapping method based on current literature and tuned to VolkerWessels; objective 2: Execute the design and analyze the outcome, and translate this into practical recommendations for the company and theoretical recommendations for the academic field of scenario-based roadmapping. Current scientific literature has been examined on topics of scenario planning, roadmapping and scenario-based roadmapping. Based on this desk research, a conclusion was drawn. This conclusion was then used to design a scenario-based roadmapping method. In applying the design, interviews with external experts were held in order to obtain relevant insights in current trends in the construction industry which were used to tune the scenario-based roadmapping method to the company. This was followed by multiple interviews with VolkerWessels personnel, in order to create multiple scenarios. These scenarios were then assessed through two online sessions. Finally, the design was improved by feedback from research participants. On the whole, a design circle was used: the method was designed, tested, and improved. It can be concluded that the desired scenario-based roadmapping method is a quick, effective and flexible process that focuses on communication throughout the organization and feedback. The reason why it should be quick and effective is because this would potentially increase the ease with which the process could be repeated over time, increasing the effectiveness of the process and providing a more up-to-date outcome each time. Also, when using scenario-based roadmapping, an organization wants to anticipate changes in the environment and act upon these changes. Therefore, quicker anticipation and quicker reaction are desired. All this asks for a compact, robust design that can be instigated and finished in a relatively short period, which makes it easier to repeat. Based on a multi-criteria analysis, a design is proposed consisting of three distinct phases: the preparation phase, the execution phase, and the feedback phase. Each phase consists of several steps. To test the design, a fitting case study was prepared. The outlines of the case study were defined in cooperation with an internal facilitator in the form of a VolkerWessels Bouw & Vastgoedontwikkeling executive, in order to maximize usability for the company. In cooperation with the company, the decision was made to apply the method on the Dutch housing industry in the near future (2020-2040). The Dutch housing industry is broadly defined as the market for homes in the Netherlands, both from newly constructed homes and from renovations. There are several limitations to this research. There is no method proposed to evaluate the proposed roadmap. An attempt was made to propose a quick and flexible process. Possible disadvantages of this design might be that it lacks depth and detail, which are sacrificed in order to gain as much speed as possible. Regarding the execution of the design: many changes were made during the process. For instance, the design initially proposed a workshop with all participants. This was, however, not deemed possible within the time-frame of the research and because of Covid-pandemic related issues. Improving the final scenario-based roadmap by adding flexpoints would also prove too time-consuming and was therefore discarded. In terms of quality of the final product: quality could have been improved by a more broad approach to the execution of the design. By involving more people from VolkerWessels, as well as involving multiple branches of the company, possibly a qualitatively better result could have been produced, and more valuable recommendations could have been made. The final roadmap could have been improved by adding timescales and linking them to current VolkerWessels products, resulting in a roadmap that shows which products to improve and how to improve them, and when the improvement is supposed to be completed. An important finding of the research was the concept of neighborhood concepts. Multiple scenarios dealt with the idea of providing corporations with a broad approach in which existing homes were to be renovated and possible new homes would be constructed, but also where the infrastructure of the whole neighborhood would be modified/optimized to fit the needs of the neighborhood. The argument behind this idea is that it would provide corporations with a single party to deal with, which would ease development on the side of corporations and governments. VolkerWessels would be a good candidate to deliver these solutions, as the organization possesses a wide variety of expertise and resources due to its size. A coherent vision on neighborhoods and neighborhood concepts would need to be created, including many aspects regarding city planning and sustainability. It is also important to look at the role of the classical contractor. Already, other companies are pioneering alternative business models and vertical supply chain integration, creating new and different competitors for the organization.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:85 business administration, organizational science
Programme:Business Administration MSc (60644)
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