Critical Barriers to the Practice of Effective Cost Planning in the Ghanaian Construction Industry

  • Kissi, Ernest ;
  • Adjei-Kumi, Theophilus ;
  • Badu, Edward
  • Published : 2016.06.01


Cost planning practices in the construction industry worldwide has gained much popularity in recent times due to economic recession and stringent measures that various procurement laws prescribe in most developed and developing countries. Nevertheless, these practices in developing countries such as Ghana are constrained with the existence of critical barriers that render them non-effective and hence, accounting for the numerous abandonment of both private and public projects. Consequently, this study was enunciated with the aim to examine the critical barriers to the practice of effective cost planning in the Ghanaian construction industry. Through an in-depth literature review and a pilot survey, questionnaires were designed and administered to quantity surveyors. Data generated from the field survey was subjected to principal component analysis. The findings of the study revealed weak cost planning knowledge base, poor cost databases and understanding, inadequate designs and planning and external conditions are the major barriers to cost planning practices in the Ghanaian construction industry. The need for this study cannot be doubted since it provides an insight for experts in the construction industry on the barriers of the practice of cost planning in the industry. The awareness of these barriers will therefore facilitate efficient and effective efforts to resolve them. A future study is thereby proposed by this study to explore effective cost planning practices in the Ghanaian construction industry that will ensure private and public stakeholders get value for their money invested.


Critical;Barriers;Cost Planning;Ghanaian;Construction


  1. H. Abdul-Rahman, M. A. Berawi, A. R. Berawi, O. Mohamed, M. Othman, I. A. Yahya, "Delay Mitigation in the Malaysian Construction Industry", Journal of Construction Engineering and Management, vol. 132, no. 2, pp. 125-133, 2006.
  2. H. Abdul‐Rahman, I. A. Yahya, M. A. Berawi, L. W. Wah, "Conceptual Delay Mitigation Model Using a Project Learning Approach in Practice", Construction Management and Economics, vol. 26, no. 1, pp. 15-27, 2008.
  3. D. K. Ahadzie, "A Model for Predicting the Performance of Project Managers in Mass House Building Projects in Ghana", Unpublished thesis (PhD), University of Wolverhampton, UK, 2007.
  4. A. S. Ali, S. N. Kamaruzzaman, "Cost Performance for Building Construction Projects in Klang Valley", Journal of Building Performance, vol. 1, no. 1, 2010.
  5. P. Anderson, D. Chisholm, D. C. Fuhr, "Effectiveness and Cost-Effectiveness of Policies and Programmes to Reduce the Harm Caused by Alcohol', The Lancet, vol. 373, no. 9682, pp. 2234-2246, 2009.
  6. R. G. Anderson, W. H. Greene, B. D. McCullough, H. D. Vinod, "The Role of Data/Code Archives in the Future of Economic Research", Journal of Economic Methodology, vol. 15, no. 1, pp. 99-119, 2008.
  7. Association of South African Quantity Surveyor (ASAQS), "Guide to Elemental Cost Estimating and Analysis for Building Works", South Africa, September, 1998.
  8. N. Azhar, R. U. Farooqui, S. M. Ahmed, "Cost Overrun Factors in Construction Industry of Pakistan", In First International Conference on Construction in Developing Countries (ICCIDC-I), Advancing and Integrating Construction Education, Research & Practice, pp. 499-508, 2008.
  9. R. F. Aziz, "Factors Causing Cost Variation for Constructing Wastewater Projects in Egypt", Alexandria Engineering Journal, vol. 52, no. 1, pp. 51-66, 2013.
  10. A. Bryman, "Social Research Methods", Oxford University Press, New York, 2004.
  11. Centre for Development Policy and Research, "Inflation-Targeting in Sub-Saharan Africa: Why Now? Why at All?" 2008, 51.pdf [accessed on 9 April 2015].
  12. E. H. W. Chan, C. H. Suen, "Disputes and Dispute Resolution Systems in Sino-Foreign Joint Venture Construction Projects in China", Journal of Professional Issues in Engineering Education and Practice, ASCE 131: pp. 141-148, 2005.
  13. C. Chung-Suk, G. E. Gibson, "Building Project Scope Definition Using Project Definition Rating Index" Journal of Architectural Engineering, vol. 7, no. 4, pp.115-125, 2001.
  14. J. DeCoster, "Overview of Factor Analysis", 1998. Accessed Via: Www.Stat-Help.Com/Notes.Html (April, 2015).
  15. R. Dogbegah, D. Owusu-Manu, K. Omoteso, "A Principal Component Analysis of Project Management Competencies for the Ghanaian Construction Industry", 2011.
  16. J. Egan, "The Egan Review: Skills for Sustainable Communities", Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, London, 2004. Available at: odpm_urbpol_pdf_028549.pdf [accessed on 9 April 2015].
  17. H. K. Eliufoo, "Preliminary Estimates of Building Cost and the Lowest Evaluated Tender", College of Engineering and Technology University of Dares Salaam, pp. 36, 2000.
  18. D. J. Ferry, P. S. Brandon, "Cost Planning of Buildings", 6 th Edition. Great Britain: BSP Professional Books, 1991.
  19. A. Field, "Discovering Statistics Using SPSS for Windows", London: Sage Publication, 2005a.
  20. B. Flyvbjerg, M. K. Skamris Holm, S. L. Buhl, "How Common and How Large Are Cost Overruns in Transport Infrastructure Projects?' Transport Reviews, vol. 23, no. 1, pp. 71-88, 2003.
  21. K. Folwell, G. Sharp, J. Souza, A. Wilen, D. Bentley, R. Davis, V. Hutchinson, "UK Industry Performance Report", London: Construction Excellence, 2012.
  22. Y. Frimpong, J. Oluwoye, L. Crawford, 'Causes of Delay and Cost Overruns in Construction of Groundwater Projects in a Developing Countries; Ghana as a Case Study", International Journal of Project Management, vol. 21, no. 5, pp. 321-326, 2003.
  23. P. Haslum, "Incremental Lower Bounds for Additive Cost Planning Problems", Australian National University & NICTA Optimization Research Group, Proceedings of the 22nd International Conference on Automated Planning and Scheduling, pp. 1-9, 2012.
  24. Heintz, James, L. Ndikumana, "Is There a Case for Formal Inflation Targeting in Sub-Saharan Africa?" Political Economy Research Institute, Working Papers, 218, March, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts, 2010.
  25. International Fund for Agricultural Development "World Bank Knowledge Management Strategy", 2007. Available at: [accessed on 9 April 2015].
  26. A. Knipe, G. Van Der Waldt, D. Van Niekerk, D. Burger, K. Nell, "Project Management for Success", Cape Town: Heinemann, 2002.
  27. S. Laryea, "Contractor Project Estimates vs. Consultant Project Estimates in Ghana", In the Construction, Building and Real Estate Research Conference of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, 2-3 September 2010, Dauphine Universite, Paris, 2010.
  28. E. Ly, J. C. Anumba, P. M. Carrillo, "Knowledge Management Practices of Construction Project Managers", Loughborough University, UK, 2005.
  29. W. M. Matipa, P. Cunningham, B. Naik, "Assessing the Impact of New Rules of Cost Planning on Building Information Model (BIM) Schema Pertinent to Quantity Surveying Practice", In 26th Annual ARCOM Conference, Viewed, vol. 16, 2013.
  30. R. Morton, D. Jaggar, "Design and the Economics of Building", London: Spon, 1995.
  31. W. L. Neuman, L. Kreuger, "Social Work Research Methods: Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches", Allyn and Bacon, 2003.
  32. J. Nicco-Annan, "Partnering in Construction", the Quantity Surveyor, vol. 1, pp. 14-19, 2006.
  33. M. J. Norusis, "SPSS/PC+ V2. 0 Base Manual for the IBM PC/XT/AT and PS/2", 1988.
  34. K. Obeng-Ayirebi, "Management Contracts as Practiced in Ghana", Unpublished MSc. Thesis, Department of Building Technology, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, pp. 60-72, 2002.
  35. M. S. Ramabodu "Procurement Guidelines for Project Success in Cost Planning of Construction Projects", Doctoral Dissertation, University of the Free State, 2014.
  36. T. Ramachandra, J. O. B. Rotimi, "Causes of Payment Problems in the New Zealand Construction Industry", Construction Economics and Building, vol. 15, no. 1, pp. 43-55, 2015.
  37. M. Sambasivan, Y. W. Soon, "Causes and Effects of Delays in Malaysian Construction Industry", International Journal of Project Management, vol. 25, no. 5, pp. 517-526, 2007.
  38. A. Santos, J. A. Powell, F. C. Torres, "Setting Stretch Targets for Driving Continuous Improvement in Construction: Analysis of Brazilian and UK Practices", Work Study, vol. 49, no. 2, pp. 50-58, 2000.
  39. P. Smith, "Project Cost Management - Global Issues and Challenges", 27th IPMA World Congress, Procedia Social and Behavioral Sciences, vol. 119, pp. 485-494, 2014.
  40. R. J. Stephenson, "Project Partnering for the Design and Construction Industry", John Wiley & Sons, 1996.
  41. H. H. Tang, Y. L. Chen, J. S. Gero, "The Influence of Design Methods on the Design Process: Effect of Use of Scenario, Brainstorming, and Synectics on Designing", Proceedings of Design Research Society (DRS) 2012, pp. 1824-1838, 2012.
  42. The Center for Construction Research and Training. The Construction Chart Book fourth edition (chart 28d). Available at http://www files/publications/CB%20p age%20 30.pdf [accessed on 9 April 2015].
  43. Washington State Department of Transportation, "Cost Estimating Manual for WSDOT Projects", 2008. Available at: Guidelines .pdf [accessed on 9 April 2015].
  44. T. M. Williams, "The Need for New Paradigms for Complex Projects", International Journal of Project Management, vol. 17, no. 5, pp. 269-273, 1999.
  45. C. R. Wu, C. T. Lin, P. H. Tsai, "Performance Measurement Model on Wealth Management Banking: Analytic Hierarchy Process and Balanced Scorecard Approach", Journal of Information and Optimization Sciences, vol. 29, no. 6, pp. 1101-1114, 2008.
  46. J. Yates, "The More Things Change? An Overview of Australia's Recent Home Ownership Policies", European Journal of Housing Policy, vol. 3, no. 1, pp. 1-33, 2003.

Cited by

  1. Towards the Establishment of Relationship between Macroeconomic Indicators and Cost of Public Educational Buildings in Ghana vol.2019, pp.2314-4912, 2019,