Open Journal of Social Sciences, 2014, 2, 48-54
Published Online March 2014 in SciRes. http://www.scirp.org/journal/jss
How to cite this paper: Lee, S.-C. and Liang, S.-S. (2014) Key Core Project Management of Construction Industry to Study.
Open Journal of Social Sciences, 2, 48-54. http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/jss.2014.23010
Key Core Project Management of
Construction Industry to Study
Shu-Chen Lee1, Shou-Shu Liang2*
1Department of Business Management, Asia Uni ver sit y
2Department of Construction Engineering, Chaoyang Unive r sit y of Technology
Email: shu219 92000@g mail.co m, *lss2199@g mail.com
Received Dec emb er 2013
The term “project management” has been applied widely in various industries for several decades.
Project Management Institute (PMI) in United States claims that the five processes a re specially
emphasized in project management. They are also necessarily applied with the nine great know-
ledge aspects of project management, integration, scope, time schedule, cost, quality, human re-
sources, communication, risk, and procurement. Project Management Association (IPMA) under
European system indicates that method application is a key aspect to achieve efficiently the plan-
ning schedule, cost, quality, and scope. According to discussions from British and American sys-
tems mentioned above, what is the core aspect in project management? On which aspect shall we
expect the project executives to focus in order to achieve the target more efficiently? For this pur-
pose, this research is focusing on proving the three core aspects of planning schedule, quality, and
cost, basing on Kano II dimension quality mode. Also, the research result will be provided to oper-
ators in project management and the related researchers.
Project Manageme nt; Knowledge Systems; Two-Dimensional Quality Model; Key Project
1.1. Motiv ation
“Project management” is a term which has been raised up rapidly in these few decades and has been developed
widely in every country and various industries. In almost every new business and new products, especially big
construction projects, we can see “Project Management” is applied as a managing method which results well.
So far, the associations of Project Management have been divided into two systems: European system and
American system. International Project Management Association, IPMA, under European system, is started
around 1965, which pursues project managing method applying to efficiently achieve the planning schedule,
cost, quality and scope. On the other hand, Project Management Institute, PMI (Project Management Profes-
sional, PMP), under American system, now has been developed as an international association. PMI emphasizes
S.-C. Lee, S.-S. Liang
the five essential processes in Project Management and nine great knowledge aspects: integration, scope, time
schedule, cost, quality, human resources, communication, risk, and procurement. Though PMI has marked the
five processes and nine knowledge aspects in Project Management, in practice we can easily discover that time
schedule, quality, and cost are the three main concerns for executors [1,2].
Despite how IPMA or PMI defines the main core of Project Management, cost, time schedule, and quality
have been listed on top during this research in practical, which are the main breakthrough points of the research.
From the motivations mentioned above, the purpose of this research has been summed up as following: 1) to
discuss the main aspects that project managers in general concern the most; 2) to verify the research’s emphasis
of time schedule, quality, and cost being the key aspects in Project Management is true, basing on Kano II di-
mension quality mode; 3) to explain the PMI’s confirmation to the key aspects in Project Management.
1.3. Field and References
The scope is defined in the influence and evaluation between time, quality and costs in project management in
construction industry. The references are collected from professional interviews of expert and scholars in indus-
try, government and scholar to understand the key points and ideas in project management in construction in-
dustry. Also, the related reviews, essays, books, and governmental researches, reports and related websites are
considered as sources of the reference.
The research is conducted in the following steps by order:
1. Collecting related references as research basis.
2. Pointing out the theories from the collected references and drafting paper-survey basing on Kano II dimen-
sion quality mode.
3. Building up “Kano II dimension quality mode of Project Management in Construction” in order to design the
Kano II dimension quality mode-expertise questionnaires.
4. Analyzing the results from the Kano II dimension quality mode-expertise questionnaires, in order to verify
the research’s emphasis of time schedule, quality, and cost being the three key aspects in Project Manage-
ment is true which can be a basis for the further research.
5. Providing the results and suggestions of this research to the related professional executors, mangers and re-
searchers (see Figure 1 study structure).
Fig ure 1. Study structure.
S.-C. Lee, S.-S. Liang
2. Document Review
2.1. Project Management
In the human history of civilization, Projects have already existed though not yet be named. The great move-
ments and constructions, such as building up Pyramid in Egypt, castles and cathedrals in Europe, constructing
Great Wall in China, developing sailing adventures, digging canals, were all considered individually as big
projects to operate and execute which were required the knowledge, so called Project Management.
Paul O. Gaddis has published “The Project Management” in Harvard Business Review May/June1959, which
is assumed as the first essay related to Project Management. Gaddis has mentioned several basic concepts in
Project Management which still have deep influences in this field and the associations in project management
Today, Project Management is defined as: having a specifically defined life cycle for the basis of designing
and executing business strategies; also being the pioneer of new products and innovating the associations, prod-
ucts, services, and business. It provides a philosophy and strategy in business management innovation. It builds
up a conjoint between functions to functions, associations to associations in cross-functioning/associations inte-
gration. Traditional management functions are applied to plan, organize, motivate, instruct, and control in order
to realize project management. It also depends on talents of leadership and the abilities of management to
achieve the target function, cost and plan; then the project is completed when the target is achieved. However,
when the result is differed from the project target or the target is not achievable, the project will be discontinued.
With the reason that PMI under American system is more often discussed and applied, the reference of this
research will be more focusing on PMI.
In The Project Management Scorecard by Jack J. Phillips, one of the authors, it is approved that every project
is influenced by three different aspects, quality/scope, time, and cost .
2.2. Two-Dimensional Quality Model
T wo-dimensional quality model is developed by two Japanese scholars, Fumio Takahashi and Noriaki Kano,
with the basis of Herzberg Motivation-Hygiene theory. Two -dimensional quality model is mainly used on ex-
ploring the availability of products and service quality by the similarity of its positive and negative pairs of
questions and the objective discussions of the quality -.
2.2.1. He rzb e rg Mo ti va tio n -Hygie ne Theory
Psychologist Herzberg has proposed Motivation-Hygiene Theory in 1959. It is also known as two-factor theory
which is the first binary concept and originally developed for motivating employees in associations. Herzberg
has found during the research that there were two factors leading employees gaining satisfactions and dissatis-
factions in work. One was hygiene factors or maintenance factors, while another is motivators or satisfiers.
These theory has pointed out the reverse of Satisfaction does not equals to Dissatisfaction, but two different but
parallel factors-the reverse of Satisfaction should be no satisfaction; Dissatisfaction should be no dissatisfaction,
which means Satisfaction gains when motivators maintains but it will not lead to Dissatisfaction when motiva-
tors is lack; Satisfaction will not rise when hygiene factors is enough but it will lead to Dissatisfaction when it is
lack. This is so called dual-continuum (see Figure 2).
2.2.2. Kano’s Model
Based on Motivation-Hygiene Theory, Fumio Takahashi and Noriaki Kano have brought out “Attractive quality
and must-be quality” and divided, according to quality situation and users’ satisfaction, into attractive quality,
one dimensional quality, must-be quality, indifferent quality and reverse quality (Yang Jing-Chou, 2002) .
Doctor Noriaki Kano has classified three levels of quality, first is quality control, second is quality manage-
Fig ure 2. Herzberg two factor s theory of
S.-C. Lee, S.-S. Liang
ment, and third is attractive quality creating. For the third level of quality, Kano has created a well-known Ka-
no’s Model in 1984. Kano used the binary concept to explain the concept of quality level and avoid Two-di-
mensional quality model (Su Tzong-Toung, 2004) . It is worth to mention that Kano’s Model’s development
was originally for applying on product development in manufacturing industry. However, today it has been
widely applied in service industry and other industry.
Kano’s quality classification and meaning as below: (Yang Jing-Chou, 2002) :
1. Attractive quality: When the quality is lacked, customers will be dissatisfied. However; if the quality is pos-
sessed, customers will be satisfied then.
2. One dimensional quality: The customers’ satisfaction will be differed by the quality. The better the quality is,
the higher satisfaction customers get; and vise versa.
3. Must-be quality: When the quality is lacked, customers will be dissatisfied. However, if the quality exists, it
won’t lead customers to higher satisfaction because it is considered as a must.
4. Indifferent quality: No matter how the quality is, it will not affect customers’ satisfaction or dissatisfaction.
5. Reverse quality: When the product is qualified, it will lead to customers’ dissatisfaction. However, when the
quality is lacked, customers will be satisfied (Figure 3).
The horizontal axis of the figure represents the quality factor: the more on the right side, the higher the de-
grees; the more on the left side, the lower the degrees. Longitudinal axis indicates the degrees of satisfaction:
going upper means the higher satisfaction and dissatisfaction in downward. Therefore, the slope of one dimen-
sional quality is 1straight line; slope of reverse quality is −1 straight line which reverses to one dimensional
quality. The slope of attractive and must-be quality are both curve lines. Attractive line which allocates on the
upside of the horizontal axis indicates no matter the degrees of quality is, it will not affect the satisfaction.
However, must-be quality is on the downside of the horizontal axis, indicating no matter the degrees of quality
is, it will not affects the dissatisfaction. Indifferent quality indicates that no matter how the quality is, it will not
affect customer’s satisfaction or dissatisfaction.
In Kano’s classification, there are five quality elements. Must-be quality is the must element, or the dissatis-
faction appears when it is lacked. Attractive quality can be considered as a strategy to enhance the competitive-
ness and better service. One dimensional quality should be the more the better in order to maintain the satisfac-
tion which will turn to dissatisfaction when it is lacked. Thus, the dissatisfaction should be always prevented.
The three elements mentioned above are crucial for positive satisfaction, which should be in the first priority to
be considered. Yet, the reverse quality should always be prevented. It will lead to customer’s dissatisfaction in-
stead of dissatisfaction. For the indifferent quality, it won’t influence too much on result but it can be considered
to cut off for lower cost.
3. Research Design
3.1. Research Structure
In this research, the variable is designed as following: through the Nine Knowledge Areas promoted by PMP:
integration, scope, time, cost, quality, human resources, communication, risk, procurement, and with a basis of
Fig ure 3. Kano’s model (Yang Jing-Chou; 2002).
S.-C. Lee, S.-S. Liang
1) t wo-dimensional quality model “existence”; 2) two-dimensional quality model “non-existence”; 3) two- di-
mensional quality model “appropriateness”-for verification; 4) the order of importance.
3.2. Experts’ Interview and Questionnaire
The research discusses about “Key Aspects in Project Management in Construction Industry” which requires
professional knowledge. Therefore, the interviewees are limited in experts, scholars, and workers in related in-
dustry. There were total 16 interviewees have been conducted by interview and questionnaires, which includes 3
high-level managers (in construction o ut industry), 3 scholars from construction and related field (professional
analysts), 4 architects and related mechanists (construction planning and overseeing), and 6 businessmen in con-
3.3. Kano’s Two-Dimensional Quality Model
Following the suggestions given by Yang Jing-Chou (1993)  to the research of two-dimensional quality
model, quality can be categorized by the interviewees’ feelings toward “exist” or “not exist” of the quality of the
object and the answers given by interviewees toward the quality. And the quality is categorized by a pair ques-
tion of positive and negative (refer to Tabl e s 1-3).
Table 1. Kano’s two-dimensional satisfaction chart.
Not enough Enough Li k e Must-have No-comment Bearable Dislike Others
Li k e No value No value Attractive Attractive Straighten Others
Must-have No value No value No comment No comment Positive Others
No comment Negative Nega t ive No comment No comment Positive Others
Bearable Negative Nega t ive Negat i ve No value No value Other s
Dislike Negative Nega t i ve Negati ve No value No value Ot hers
Others Others Others Other s Others Other s Others
(Kano, N., Seraku, N., Takahashi, F. & Tsuji, S., 1984) .
Table 2. Matzler & Hinterhuber two-dimensional quality model sort out chart.
Not enough Enough Like Must-have No-comment Bearable Dislike
Lik e No value Attractive Attractive Attractive Straighten
Must-have Negative No comment No comment No comment Positive
No comment Negative No comment No comment No comment Positive
Bearable Negative No comment No comment No comment Positive
Dislike Negative Negative Negative Negative No value
(Matzler, k. & Hinterhuber, H.H., 1998) .
Table 3. Two-dimensional quality model sort out standard chart.
Existence or enough 1 1 2, 3, 4 2, 3, 4 5
Non-Existence or not enough 2, 3, 4 5 5 2, 3, 4 1
(Yang Jing-Chou , 2002 customer need and satisfied investigate).
S.-C. Lee, S.-S. Liang
4. Verification of Resea rch
Kano’s Two-Dimensional Quality Model Verification
In order to verify the object of this research “time, quality and cost are the three key cores the project manage-
ment in construction industry should pursue”, questionnaires design, experts’ feedbacks, and categorization, and
analysis were conducted with the basis of Kano’s two-dimensional quality model. Then it is categorized as
Table 4. After collecting the 16 interviewees’ feedback, it is discovered that the Nine knowledge areas are re-
flecting its nature and it’s order of importance as Table 5.
1. Scope (43.75%) and human resources (56.25%) are considered as must-be quality.
2. The rest: integration (68.75%), time schedule (81.25%), cost s (75%), q ualit y (75%), communication (75%),
risk (56.25%), procurement (68.75%) are all considered as one-dimensional quality.
3. The order of importance: time schedule (100%) and quality (100%) are equally listed on the top, co s t s
(93.75%) as the second, integratio n (62.5%) as the third, procurement (56.25%) as the fourth, communica-
tion (50%) as the fifth, ris k (4 3.75%) as the sixth, scope (37.5%) as the seventh, human resources (31.25%)
as the eighth.
5. Conclusions and Suggestions
5.1. Conclu si on s
From the questionnaires in this research, indifferent quality and reverse quality were two non-checked items
while attractive quality was rarely checked. It results that the three qualities are not playing the crucial roles in
project management. Scope and human resources are must-be quality, which is considered necessary.
Scope is categorized in must-be quality, which expresses that it is adjustable during the project (be added or
deducted with the content or items) though it is crucial. Therefore, the scope is only as rule in consideration.
Human resources are also categorized in must-be quality. It might because the plan and education in human re-
sources haven’t been emphasized though its importance is recognized.
Table 4. Two-dimensional quality model questionnaire sort out chart.
Not enough Enough (1) Approvable (2) Acceptable (3) No comment (4) Not appropriate (5) Not agree
(1) Approvable Non value Attractive quality Attractive quality Attractive quality One dimensional qualit y
(2) Acceptable Reverse quality Indifferent quality Indifferent quality Indifferent quality Must-be quality
(3) No comment Reverse quality Indifferent quality Indifferent quality Indifferent quality Must-be quality
(4) Not appropria te Reverse quality Indifferent quality Indifferent quality Indifferent quality Must-be quality
(5) Not agree Reverse quality Reverse quality Reverse quality Reverse quality Non value
Table 5. Pro fessional questionnaire statistics chart.
Aspects Ite n Attractive
Quality Order of
Integration -- 68.75% 31. 25% -- -- 62.5% (3)
Scope 3 7. 50% 18.75% -- -- 3 7. 5% (7)
Tim e 12. 50% 81.25% 6.25% -- --
Costs 1 2. 50% 75.00% 12.50% -- --
Quality 6.25% 75.00 % 1 8. 75% -- --
Human Resources 18.75% 25.00% -- -- 31. 25 % (8)
Commun ic at i on 18.75 % 6.25% -- -- 50.00 % (5)
Risk 18. 75% 25.00% -- -- 43.75% (6)
Proc urement 6.25% 25.00 % -- -- 56. 25% (4)
S.-C. Lee, S.-S. Liang
Integration, time schedule, cost, quality, communication, risk, and procurement are all considered as one-di-
mensional quality. However, the top three on the list are time, costs, and quality, according to the analysis. The
characteristic of one-dimensional quality is the more the better and more satisfaction, which means that they are
crucial in project management. However, when ordered by the importance, it reveals that there is a slight differ-
ence (6.25%) between time and quality (both equally listed in first) and costs. Plus, these three are (31.25%)
differentiated from the rest. Thus, it is verified that the assumption of key cores in project management which
are time, costs and quality is true.
1. The scope in management is not respected enough in construction industry. The main scope is not usually
adjusted, yet the content is somehow adjusted for design and budgets. That affects the efficiency of the
project execution. Therefore, the prior appropriateness of the content and the budget control and modification
during the project should be examined carefully in order to avoid the change of the expected scope.
2. Out-sourcing is highly conducted in construction industry, which becomes the reason for educating and de-
veloping the talents are not taken seriously. It also influences the execution of Human resources. The only
way to change is to modify entirely the whole construction team and the way of running.
3. Time, costs, and quality are the key cores in project management. Thus, the executors should consider all the
aspects in knowledge areas, and control these three aspects precisely to reach the expected plan.
4. Finally, one discovery in this research: a PMP scholar has pointed out during the interview that the quality is
categorized in scope during the PMP evaluation. However, it is revealed that scope belongs to attractive
quality. Then, it should be the next issue for the further research.
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