The Agile Construction Initiative is an industry-led project aimed at promoting performance improvement within the construction industry in line with Latham and Egan’s recommendations. The project utilises lean production management techniques pioneered in the automotive and aerospace sectors as basis for its work.
Using benchmarking in an innovative and integrated manner, Agile will seek to link improvments in productivity, quality and procurement. This will entail benchmarking at operational and strategic levels to broaden the adoption of good practices along the entire value-chain. Benchmarking will enable project management to implement changes in site practices to measure improvements in production processes while cutting out waste and poor quality. Benchmarking will also allow senior management to make policy changes with confidence and monitor their effectiveness in delivering continual improvements related to production efficiency, finished quality and strategic direction. Together, these changes should help to place the entire British construction industry at the vanguard of world-performance, ready to face the challenges presented by an ever more volatile and competitive global market.
Recruited from both academia and industry, the Agile research team is trained to provide independent and balanced analysis of the data generated though this industrial collaboration. Acting as an honest broker, the research team analyses the data and provides insights into best practice.
Agiles's industrial partners, representing the entire construction value network, provide staff to work alongside the academic research team. They are involved in data gathering and in pilot implementation and evaluation of the best practices identified by Agile researchers.
Originally established in 1996, Agile forms one of a synergistic suite of initiatives centred at the University of Bath's School of Management. In recognition of the importance of these research initiatives, EPSRC continues to provide funding to the University under the Lean and Agile Research Group (LARG) scheme.