Building a symbiotic relationship between academia and industry: expectations and observations of construction management graduates
Faculty of Business and Public Management
School of Business
Construction management graduates are employed in job functions such as building and civil engineering contracting, construction and project management consulting, client organisations (public and private) and developer organisations. Considering the diversity of employment opportunities for construction management graduates, they increasingly need to have a portfolio of skills to work effectively and efficiently with other professions in the industry. In exploring this, the objective of the research presented in this paper is to determine if construction management graduates are meeting the expectations of their employers. In considering the competitive forces impacting the construction industry, the authors of this paper sought to establish whether construction managers are able to identify those key skills needed for the future success of the industry. In turn, this information is considered critical for the successful formulation of curricula. Therefore, to establish whether construction management graduates are meeting the expectations of contractors, a survey was distributed to managers to establish their expectations and observations of recent graduates. The survey results indicate that managers are generally satisfied with the skill level of graduate students. The survey also highlighted several important skills that were considered to be lacking in graduates. cknowledging that there is always a need to improve the skill level of graduates, the authors propose a number of recommendations that are considered to improve the content construction management curricula.