Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/211830
Title: TRUST IN SINGAPORE’S CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY: A COMPARATIVE STUDY BETWEEN VIRTUAL TEAMS AND TRADITIONAL FACE-TO-FACE TEAMS
Authors: NUR SYAFIQAH BINTE ZAINAL
Keywords: Virtual Teams
Traditional Face-to-face Teams
Trust
Issue Date: 2-Dec-2021
Citation: NUR SYAFIQAH BINTE ZAINAL (2021-12-02). TRUST IN SINGAPORE’S CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY: A COMPARATIVE STUDY BETWEEN VIRTUAL TEAMS AND TRADITIONAL FACE-TO-FACE TEAMS. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in workplaces growing fully conversant with the concept of virtual teams, even for the construction industry. The unprecedented challenges that arose in Singapore’s response to curb the effects of the pandemic have compelled its construction sector to adapt its work processes in the new normal. Construction projects halted during the circuit breaker period, and construction progresses were still slow when the industry gradually resumed with the implementation of safe management measures. However, because of the nature of the coronavirus, physical or in-person interactions are still well frowned upon and strict management of these interactions is required to prevent clusters. As the industry shifts towards virtuality, there is limited study on how virtual teams fare opposed to traditional face-to-face teams, as it has been largely reported to impede trust (McAllister, 1995; Mayer et al., 1995). Therefore, this research aims to explore the elements of trust in virtual teams and establish a framework for it. Additionally, the paper seeks to understand the significance of trust on team effectiveness and propose strategies to develop trust in virtual teams. According to the literature review conducted, there are several antecedents of trust due to its intricacies and multifaceted construct. This study groups and categorises the various dimensions of trust based on one commonly cited literature from McAllister (1995) – cognitive dimension and affective dimension. Team effectiveness, identified to be a key success indicator, was also measured on two areas – team performance and team satisfaction. Upon completing the literature review, a survey questionnaire was developed and disseminated to the target participants. The gathered data was then analysed and studied with the use of non-parametric analysis methods to ascertain the significance and differences among the various profile of the organisations and respondents. Post interviews were also conducted to substantiate the results. The results from the analysis disclosed that virtual teams can be comparably effective akin to traditional teams. It should be noted that virtual teams can possess a higher level of affective-based trust and lower level of cognitive-based trust as compared to traditional face-to-face teams. The effectiveness of both types of teams was also studied and findings revealed that virtual teams have a higher level of team performance but lower level of team satisfaction than traditional face-to-face teams. The top three strategies that can assist trust-building in virtual teams are reported to be sharing of personal interest and information, ice-breaker exercises and face-to-face meetings when possible. By studying the barriers to virtuality, to understand the antecedents of trust and how it can be built in virtual teams, this study has provided valuable findings for the construction industry as it continually adapts to the new, everchanging normal – a post-COVID-19 world.
URI: https://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/211830
Appears in Collections:Bachelor's Theses

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