This flow chart helped narrow down the SMEs that needed to be contacted
We then produced a questionnaire which analysed the company’s needs, difficulties it may be facing, the roles and responsibilities of the interviewee and the online documents they accessed most for their companies needs.This information would give us a general idea of how the company interacted in the supply chain and any gaps they may have in their knowledge. We recognized a significant barrier to achieving this would be that companies do not know what they don’t know – this led to additional methods for engagement being considered. 2.We then tried to create a database of contacts that matched the criteria we were looking for by researching appropriate companies and networking at local events4. We then started holding interviews with those who had agreed for us to contact them further about the project in the questionnaire. These were all transcribed and documented. We even work shadowed some companies and video taped them in action.We knew that some of the collaborative workshop events would also be events for collecting this data – and discussions amongst SMEs we felt might reveal far more than we could glean.. Our next step is to hold workshops with the community we have created, and allow them to input their thoughts and opinions into our final platform and allow them to create a solution for their needs. Four workshop evening events were planned, all lecture captured and all with time for discussion. The workshop leaders were identified as “catalytic individuals” for the community.The last step will be to engage the community and obtain their feedback on the final output of the project (which will be in the form of a website).This website will hopefully be used by the community we have created and other interested SMEs, students or freelance builders looking for more information on renewable energies in the domestic sector.
Megs conference XMAS 2012
MEGS-KTResearch Project Mirna Ayoubi Dr Paul Rowley Dr Andrea Wheeler
Introduction about myselfIhave just completed my second year at Loughborough University studying Architectural Engineering and D e s i g n M a n a g e m e n t , a course held by the civil and building school at Loughborough University Summer2012 – 10 Week Placement on the MEGS-KT Project
What is MEGS-KT?Midlands Energy Graduate School-Knowledge Transfer Working with SMEs (Small and Medium Enterprises) Discover the gaps in their knowledge „Transferring‟ the knowledge Providing a Learning Framework A JISC funded Project
Objectives To construct a visual representation that describes the social nature of the SME community. To Explore and evaluate the potential of specific social network-based facilities and the role of networks in knowledge identification and transfer within the SME community. Develop an exemplar for an e-learning environment
Which SMEs? • Their company should be based in the EM: • Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire, Lincolnshire, Rutland, Leicestershire, Northamptonshire EastMidlands • Their company should supply/install renewable technologies • Or they should generate renewable technologies • They should be important figures in terms of innovation Energy Sector • Most of their jobs and projects should be for domestic and residential buildingsDomestic Sector • Their company should be made up of less than 250 people • They should make a turnover of less than 50 million euros P.A, (EU recommendation, 2003) SME
Methodology1. Precedent Study2. Created a Database of Contacts3. Data Collection (Online surveys, questionnaires, interviews, work- shadowing and workshops)4. Reviewing the Prototype
InsightsSMEs do not have defined roles like larger companies.SMEs have little time to research and improve their businessesNo-one understands the Green Deal (May 2012)?SMEs cannot communicate well their needs, when asked.In the current climate there is a lack of work/ of projects (architectslack projects, construction companies lack projects).Bureaucratic methods for getting accredited discouragespeoples/companies from accreditation (subsequent lack ofjobs, loss of tenders).Many people are interested in the DIY section of the sector.The construction industry is poor in terms of QA.With the Green Deal approaching there is a need for up-skilling theretro-fit industry.Low carbon and renewable energy technologies need to bemarketed to the average client.
Workshops Each of the speakers represents a factor identified in the research, which aims both to uncover the barriers to the growth of these companies and to provide a training solution. Robin Nicholson is an architect and has worked closely with Government and policy makers heading Think Tanks about sustainable buildings and urban infrastructure. He will be exploring the barriers to business growth from an urban and policy perspective. Russell Smith will be telling his story about setting up his own award winning company in this field and why he had to take the approach he did to meet the needs of householders. Terry McGiven will be talking about innovative training opportunities he has set up with European Commission funds for companies in London at the Institute for Sustainability John Davis a highly inspirational speaker will be talking about the Green Deal.
Positives Positive support from academics, professionals, Government bodies other initiatives (Institute for Sustainability) to work with the project toward the long term sustainability of MEGS-KT. Interest from many different sectors – including academics. Engagement with key figures working in the field identified as “catalytic” individuals for the community.