An exploratory factor analysis of risk management practices: A study among small and medium contractors in Gauteng

  • Bérenger Renault University of Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Justus Agumba Durban University of Technology, South Africa
  • Nazeem Ansary University of Johannesburg, South Africa
Keywords: Factor analysis, risk management practices, small and medium enterprises, South Africa


Risk management (RM) is acknowledged as a key activity in project management in the pursuit to deliver successful construction projects. However, these projects are associated with various risks, which often jeopardise project performance, especially among small and medium construction enterprises (SMEs). Risk management practices (RMPs) have been developed, in order to curtail project risks. Nevertheless, there is no consensus on the practices that constitute RM for SME projects. Therefore, the main purpose of this research is to determine the RMPs that can be tailored for construction SMEs to manage risk in their projects, in order to achieve project success. An extensive review of relevant literature on RMPs was conducted and used to develop a structured questionnaire posted to construction SMEs who were conveniently sampled in the Gauteng province of South Africa. The empirical findings established nine RMPs that were reliable and valid for managing risk in projects undertaken by construction SMEs, namely organizational environment; defining project objectives; resource requirements; risk measurement; risk identification; risk assessment; communication approach and evaluation; risk response and action planning, as well as monitoring and review. It is important to note that the study was not conducted across South Africa; hence, the findings cannot be generalized. Despite the delimitation, the researchers recommend that these practices are for risk management in construction projects undertaken by SMEs in South Africa.


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