We see a construction industry now that tries to embrace changes with IT and information technology, but they are not sure of the direction they need to go in to make money. What measures do I need to take, to benefit my business going forward? Here are our recommendations.
1. Connect your entire supply chain
To get a building project or an infrastructure project off the ground you will need a series of processes. However, these processes are not connected, as the architect Phil Bernstein explains with this graph in his TEDx Talks from 2015:
For every transfer you lose a lot of information by handing over information on paper. Why cannot you have a smoother curve?
Philip Wright, Contracts Consultant and Shareholder, Optimise International, has an answer to Bernstein’s question:
In each one of these processes everyone is currently using their own little bit of software without any thoughts for the on process afterwards. You need to collaborate and share data across the project’s entire life cycle.
2. Start using your raw data
Start analysing the enormous amounts of data your company creates every day and the potential to learn from past mistakes saving time, materials and money are vast. For example, if you compare and analyse the data collected during the execution of piles for retaining walls of a new metro station, foundations for a new skyscraper or a bridge, you may learn why your team was underperforming and enable you to perform better in the future.
3. Establish a learning culture
It is important to establish a learning culture. If you want to move forwards, you need to learn from your past: Analyse your data, see how you can do better, communicate key messages to your staff.
4. Get rid of the blaming culture
It may not be that easy to establish a learning culture, if you are used to looking for scapegoats and culprits. Peter Coleman, Shareholder and Construction Lawyer, Optimise International explains:
From my knowledge, most companies in construction have a blame culture. But if something goes wrong, you must learn from your mistakes: Why did it happen? How did it happen? Could it happen again, if we don’t change our practice?
5. Create transparency
To establish a learning culture where you use your data both backward-looking and predictive, you will need transparency at all levels of your organisation. Are you ready for that?
6. Learn from other industries
Regardless of how you look at the use of IT, the construction industry is lagging behind most other industries. Therefore, the industry should learn from other industries like the car industry, sports like football and Formula 1 etc. how they have managed to embrace IT technology, e.g. to make predictive analyses.
7. Bring in IT-literate people on all levels of organisation
You may need to bring in new people to bring around change, according to Peter Coleman:
Wherever the company is, they need to bring people in, that are IT-literate, that understand IT, and that can develop IT processes, that are going to benefit the companies. Not least at the management level.
8. Establish a training system
Unless you want to replace all your staff, you will need to establish a training system, enabling everybody to understand the need and contribute to the aggregation of data
9. Get a central reporting system
A central reporting system should work for your projects like the central nervous system acts for your body: Assemble knowledge, analyse backwards and make predictions for the future.
McKinsey reports that on-site productivity can be increased by as much as 50 percent by implementing a cloud-based control tower that rapidly assembles accurate data in near real time that is both backward-looking and predictive.
10. All change should start with the top management
We have already mentioned that you need IT-literate people at all levels of your organisation. This goes also for the top management, so that they will understand what it takes to change the organisation and bring it into the future by embracing IT-technology and make money.
This is how you can get a cloud-based central reporting system
Kapio has developed an integrated, BIM-compliant, Common Data Environment (CDE) for the storage of all your project drawings and other files. Files can be shared in the cloud with your project team throughout the entire life-cycle of your construction.
- Watch our video
- Investigate how Kapio can help you take control of your data
- Request a free demo
- Contact us
- The Future of Making Buildings (video). Bernstein, P. TEDx Talk, October 2015
- Reinventing construction through a productivity revolution. Barbosa, F. et al. Report McKinsey Global Institute, February 2017
- Imagining construction’s digital future. Agarwal, R. et al. Article McKinsey Global Institute, June 2016
- Construction of concrete piles: Avoid losing time and concrete
- See how you can use Kapio to store live data from your project