An investigation of the key factors affecting the growth of small engineering consulting firms in the construction industry in Kenya
Mwarangu, Sheila Wairimu
MetadataShow full item record
This study investigated the key factors affecting the growth of small engineering consulting companies (ECC) that serve the construction industry in Kenya. Data was collected from 71 owners/directors of small engineering consulting companies in Kenya. The research design adopted a quantitative design. Primary data collection for this study was based on a survey questionnaire which was mainly administered via face to face interviews and a few via telephone interviewing. These data was analyzed using descriptive analysis, cross-tabulation analysis, factor analysis and correlation analysis. The results of the study reveal that the main positive factors contributing to the growth of the ECCs are: having a growth strategy, continuous professional development of the staff, a greater number of founders in the company, company location, and the legal form of the business. The results also revealed that the main constraints to the growth of the ECCs were late payment by clients, competition, skill shortage, difficulty in getting credit from the lending institutions, availability or cost of premises, and local economic conditions. Understanding the factors facilitating growth and hindering the growth and survival of small ECCs in Kenya will help the Engineers Board of Kenya to design targeted programs that will stimulate innovation for the engineering companies and hence help them grow. The significance of this study stems from the fact that the construction industry in Kenya is growing but the small engineering consulting firms that serve this sector do not seem to be growing (Dihel, 2010). No study seems to have been done in this area to find out what affects the growth of this industry. The insights gained from this study contribute to the future development of this line of research, particularly what strategies can be employed to aid the growth of the small ECCs.