Superior Contractor Performance: a Barrier to Lean Construction Adoption in Australia

Matt Stevens1

1Lecturer, School of Engineering, Design and Built Environment, Western Sydney Univeristy, Penrith, NSW AU, [email protected],


The Australian construction industry produces twice as much value per dollar while enduring four times the competition than manufacturing. Impressively, this sector outpaces six of nine major industries in the country. However, their quantitative success may dampen Lean Construction's adoption, hurting the industry long-term. Practices significantly transform the value of the inputs, and contractors do it better than manufacturing. However, the industry is much riskier than manufacturing, so contractors hesitate to change to new ones quickly. It appears that organisations will not rapidly adopt Lean's methodology partially due to the success and risk of the Australian construction Industry. This paper proposes a survey methodology of practices to convince contractors of Lean Construction’s improvement potential. Obviously, they should search wherever there may be promising methods. However, this research outlines a straightforward process to validate valuable practices that can be executed internally in the industry and clarify practices' value and timely completion. The aim is to convince already superior performing contractors to see the LC approach as a competitive opportunity.


Construction contracting management, best practice, performance improvement, innovation.



Stevens, M. 2022. Superior Contractor Performance: a Barrier to Lean Construction Adoption in Australia, Proc. 30th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction (IGLC) , 528-539.

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