Organizational development in the project industry - A learning perspective
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The Norwegian project industry is currently exposed to major competition, both nationally and globally. This calls for a more efficient value creating process, and project-based organizations are today looking for ways to systematize organizational development activities for this purpose. Since 60-80\% of the project value is typically outsourced, a lot of the value creation in projects takes place in collaboration with subcontractors. This indicates that if a more efficient value creating process is to be achieved, the project-based organizations need to involve their subcontractors in the organizational development. To investigate how organizational development is approached in the project industry today, we have studied three Norwegian project-based organizations, together with a subset of their respective subcontractors. To illuminate the topic of joint organizational development, we have applied literature from the fields of supply chain management and strategic change management. We have also developed an analytical framework where we look at organizational development as part of a learning process. Our findings indicate that systematic organizational development is challenging in the context of the project industry. This is largely due to the hectic nature of the project process and the companies' focus on project progress. The project-based organizations in this thesis are currently developing organizational development systems, but do not seem to recognize the potentially important role of their subcontractors in the development work. This indicates that the project industry has overlooked the subcontractors importance for achieving an efficient value creating process.