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Academy of Strategic Management JournalVolume 20, Issue 1, 2021DIGITAL TRANSFORMATION AND E-COMMERCE INCONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY: A PROSPECTIVEASSESSMENTShabir Hussain Khahro, Prince Sultan UniversityShafiqul Hassan, Prince Sultan UniversityNoor Yasmin Binti Zainun, Universiti Tun Hussein Onn MalaysiaYasir Javed, Prince Sultan UniversityABSTRACTThe 2020 has been a challenging year, disrupting firms in all markets and leaving globalinstability. Digital adoption using e-commerce, automations needs to be adapted quicklyespecially in construction. The delay in adoption will make the construction industry lag behindother fields and will require revamping and huge investments to have a competitive level ifdelayed. It has been observed that Construction industry lacks in digital transformation and Ecommerce applications. Therefore, this paper evaluates the possible potentials of digitaltransformation and E-commerce in construction industry. A detailed literature review has beencarried out to analyze the possible potentials, benefits and barriers of digital transformation andE-commerce in construction industry. It is concluded that with the application of InformationCommunication Technology (ICT) and other innovations, the overall productivity, efficiency andcompetitiveness will increase in construction industry. Digital transformation and E-Commerceapplications facilitate the flow of work and collaboration at different organizational levels. Forlarge and small companies, ICT and e-Business are essential for promoting incorporation andcooperation with business associates, vendors and consumers, as well as making electronictransactions. It provides consumers with support, helps produce and accept sales and orders at afast level, lowers inventory time, costs and decreases obsolescence. Maintenance of theframework, stability and lack of software expertise are the few obstacles in the constructionindustry's use of E-Business. Application/Improvement: For the growth of e-Business in thebuilding industry, collective and full collaboration is needed.Keywords: Digital Transformation, E-Commerce, Hybrid Procurement, Construction Industry,Business Approach.INTRODUCTION & LITERATURE REVIEWAlthough most construction industry will find a variety of IT services, these usuallycontain just fragments of the latest range of E-commerce systems. The explanations for thisinclude the large degree of expenditure needed for these programs to work, the volatility of thereturns on these systems, and the new ability sets required for workers to function. However, it isevident that as E-commerce platforms become more profoundly ingrained in the constructionindustry, it would be important to resolve these barriers. The benefits are significant and theywould flow to all stakeholders. The creation of an information management role for one or more11939-6104-20-1-701

Academy of Strategic Management JournalVolume 20, Issue 1, 2021of the professional groups is another likely outcome of the use of E-commerce in theconstruction industry. In securing such a role, the construction profession needs to be proactive.The COVID-19 pandemic results in higher disruption and the professionals in the constructionindustry are expecting to boost the investments in digital transformation and E-commerce. Whenit comes to disruption-driven digital investments, the construction sector beats all others and ecommerce is at the very heart of this digitization. This is a product of market preference, aparadigm shifts in how the business runs, and the reality that the industry as a whole is laggingbehind when it comes to digitalization. In a recent survey conducted by Klynveld Peat MarwickGoerdeler (KMPG) in 2019, it is reported that machine learning and artificial intellegance will beadopted normally in this sector in next five years as shown in Figure 1.Source: KPMG Report (2019)FIGURE 1THE POTENTIALS OF MACHINE LEARNING AND ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCEIN FUTUREAnother recent survey conducted by National Bureau of Statistics, 2019 reported that70% of constuction companies perseive that they will be out of business market if they will notadopt to digital transformation and E-commerce era. Whereas, 62% experts believe that theconstruction industry is way behind the other industries in terms of adopting digitaltransformation and E-commerce solutions. It is also reported the sruvey that almost 89% of theexperts feel that the digital transformation and E-commerce will transform this industry and theproductivity and profitibility can be incearsed using the applications of digital transformation andE-commerce as shown in Figure 2.The estimated size of the global demand for building materials by 2030 is expected to beone trillion dollars (Castillo, 2020). It will help the practitioners draw on a greater share of thosegains through an online distribution platform. In the building sector, demand for e-commerce ismuch greater than the cross-industry average, which is why as many as 84 percent of industryfirms plan to offer 100 percent of their goods digitally in the future (Castillo, 2020).21939-6104-20-1-701

Academy of Strategic Management JournalVolume 20, Issue 1, 2021Source: National Bureau of Statistics (2019)FIGURE 2NATIONAL BUREAU OF STATISTICSThe developments in digital technologies opened the way for internet retailers to be setup to satisfy shoppers' demands, just as a brick and mortar shop might do. This method of buyingand selling goods and services over the internet through online platforms is known as Ecommerce. The Internet-based procurement and distribution of products and services is moregenerally referred to as E-commerce. Although this is still common in the retail sector, Ecommerce in the construction industry has also grown steadily. The various advantages of Ecommerce given in the following sections, particularly for the vendors. Another way of thinkingabout E-commerce is literally to do it digitally. This covers, for example, the purchasing anddistribution of digital cash goods, but can also involve the exchange of products, products andservices. In other areas of the economy, E-commerce is commonly employed, and examplesinclude airline booking services, Internet banking and online shopping malls. Any of thesetechnologies, such as automated banking, are more apparent to the public. Online banking hasexpanded exponentially, and resources such as accounts, account changes, bill payments, loanapprovals and investment preparation can now be used by consumers (Stewart, 2001). Using thisconcept, with catalog shopping and home shopping using cable TV, E-commerce has severalparallels. But this concept of on-line purchasing and sale is not restricted to E-commerce only. Italso contributes to major improvements, affecting all facets of a company and business, in theway goods and services are delivered and shared. With its influence on three distinct categoriesof business processes, the true disruptive value of E-commerce is a) within-business processes,b) business-to-business processes (e.g. supply-chain management) and business-to-consumerprocesses (Johnson, 2000).By engaging in technological advancements, other sectors have increased efficiency. Inthis pattern, the rise of the Internet and business-to-business E-commerce promises a continuousrise. As the usage of the Internet has grown, the idea of E-commerce has expanded (Johnson,2000). Online tendering, online recruitment, online project coordination and correspondence,online sales, online contracting arrangements, online payment, and online database systems are31939-6104-20-1-701

Academy of Strategic Management JournalVolume 20, Issue 1, 2021among the forms of resources that can be enabled using technology and E-commerce. For thebuilding sector, E-commerce may seem like an exotic idea. It has been embraced as this conceptcan boost the revenue. But it is still challenging for E-commerce to seep into the conventionalconstruction industry. This aversion has many explanations and the best one is the ease of doingbusiness. For a construction firm, E-commerce implementation is not easy. The growth in Ecommerce is steadily gaining traction in this industry (CMGurus, 2019).New ICT and E-Business innovations are introducing improvements to the buildingsector. ICT applications facilitate the flow of work and collaboration at different organizationallevels. For large and small companies, ICT and E-Business are essential for promotingincorporation and cooperation with business associates, vendors and consumers, as well asmaking electronic transactions. It provides consumers with support, helps produce and acceptsales and orders at a fast level, lowers inventory time, costs and decreases obsolescence.Business companies are starting to implement speedy contact tools in the current scenario to getproductive job completed. Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the building industrycontribute greatly to the growth of the economy. While it has the greatest potential for growinggrowth and performance, the usage of information and communication technology in this field islimited. E-tendering, E-site, E-procurement, and E-quality are the four most relevant internal ICTsystems. However, the absence of technical skills contributes to ignorance of ICTimplementation programs at different levels in the building industry (Vitkauskaite & Gatautis,2008; Harindranath, 2008).Based on the significance of this key research area, this paper evaluates the potentialeffectiveness of digital transformation and E-commerce in construction industry as it has hugepotentials to improve the productivity and work processes in this industry. This paper alsopresents the possible benefits of digital transformation and E-commerce in this importantindustry. In the last phase of this paper, the potential barriers in adoption of digitaltransformation and E-commerce are also highlighted in this paper. This paper highlights thepotential benefits of this new era of digital transformation and E-commerce. It will provide thebenchmark for researchers working in this field as it the growing field these days and there ishuge potential for young entrepreneur in all industries including construction industry. Thispaper will provide the initial platform to promote and implement digital transformation and Ecommerce in construction industry to improve the construction processes and the supply chainmanagement cycle in this industry.Benefits of Digital Transformation and E-commerceAll of the stakeholders in the construction process can benefit in some manner from theintroduction of digital transformation and E-commerce. Some of them are shown in Figure 3 thepossible benefits are as follows; Globalization: Expanding the market places to national and global level (Mohamed, 2010).Productivity: Increases productivity in construction (Issa et al., 2003)Time: Effectively Using the time by reducing the error, rework, reduce hard copy storage (Al-Weshah& Al-Zubi, 2012). Cost: Reduction in business process costCommunication: Retrieve accurate information about the project at a greater speed from variouslocations (Mohamad & Ismail, 2013)Revenue: Increase in the profit and turnover of the company (Agboh, 2015).Coordination: Effective coordination and collaboration (Khan, 2018)41939-6104-20-1-701

Academy of Strategic Management Journal Volume 20, Issue 1, 2021AI driven decision: Decision about cost, order placement can be supported by Machine learningallowing effective and in time decision (Agboh, 2015; Khan, 2018).Customized customer care: AI based solution will allow focused customer care according to theirpreferences, it will also allow prediction about upcoming purchases and market condition thusallowing auto-order placement before time (Issa et al., 2003; Jabeur, 2013)Customer Service: Keep better relation with the customers (Jabeur, 2013)Workforce Motivation: Employees are motivated with proper communication (Jabeur, 2013)Investors: Improved project transparency and improved risk managementOwners/Developers: Lower contingencies, increased project efficiency, reduced construction cost,reduced construction periodsDesigners and other consultants: Time savings, improved communications, accuracy and specificationContractors/Sub-contractors: Lower costs, time savings, increased control, enhanced communicationand procurement processesSuppliers: Lower inventories, reduced costs as well as due to automated stock report and supplierreport the orders can be made before time to suppliers to avoid any delays.Manufacturers: Reduced supply chain costs, improved information, purchasing and supply processes.Equipment rentals and sales Deliver orders quickly, Low wastage & environment-friendly, Budget,and financial management, E-commerce through mobile.Accident control: It will allow taking decision timely and according to government guidelines.Moreover, digital transformation will allow in-time reporting resulting in less number of accidents(Khahro, 2016)FIGURE 3SHOWING LIST OF POTENTIAL BENEFITS BY EMPLOYING DIGITALTRANSFORMATION AND E-COMMERCEThe influence of digital transformation and E-commerce is even greater than the benefitof improving transaction processing efficiencies, changing the systems utilized in many sectors.It is now evident that E-commerce would bring big improvements for enterprises, customers, thegovernment and the environment. Companies are improving the work processes of the company.Key Barriers for Digital Transformation and E-CommerceLack of staff to support the technologyThere is the dire need for the digital transformation in the construction industry, but thereare some barriers that are to be addressed, one of the barrier is the lack of trained manpower whohave the expertise and knowledge of both construction industry and the e-commerce.Budget51939-6104-20-1-701

Academy of Strategic Management JournalVolume 20, Issue 1, 2021Budget is another factor that creates the hin