Bentley Systems Research
Still ‘Drowning in Paper’
The research conducted by Bentley Systems, the design, construction, and infrastructure software provider, of more than 720 construction professionals across the world has found less than half (43.5%) of workers said they have no digital capabilities for collaboration or that their information is either paper-based or siloed.
The impact of this is significant, as analysis from Mace, a global construction consultancy, found almost 80% of large construction projects experience cost or program overruns and that if project delivery does not improve, the UK taxpayer could be left to pick up a tab of around £19bn in 10 years’ time.
Why we need to redefine working practices
Prepare for it. This is the single largest battle we face as an industry. The over-riding barrier holding us back from implementing digital construction is not the technology and whether it’s up to the task; it’s the mindset and psychology of us working in the industry.
‘Buy in’ Crucial
It is crucial to get the buy-in of the entire senior leadership team to successfully instigate change. However, the tactical objections over monetary cost, time, effort, human resources, and education can all be overcome if we are prudent and prepare our businesses for change in an orderly fashion.
- To win over advocates, we must probe change. We need to monitor and evaluate the performance of the project at frequent stages to capture progress and refine and improve our working practices. Hold open forum meetings and get people thinking collectively about the changes they are implementing. It is important for empowering team members to think and analyse how they work and to discuss whether there are any ways that they can do it better.
- We need to capture, understand results, and repeat. To create and maximise impact across the whole organisation, we need to be able to process it. We need to capture changes, understand how we achieved results, and repeat them. Adopting and embedding digital ways of working need buy-in at all levels of a business. Organisations should develop board steering groups so that the top of the business can see and understand the benefits of going digital.
DfMA leads the way
- The shift in construction techniques and practice toward Off-Site Construction is well underway. As this matures into Design for Manufacture and Assembly (DfMA) this is clearly at the forefront in turning construction workers into technical deliverer and enablers for such delivery. Additionally, new homes will very soon be ‘Smart’ in numerous ways, including full incorporation of energy saving and TIoT (the internet of things) to deliver major components. This is something that ‘Off-Site’. DfMA (Design for Manufacture & Assembly) will need to seriously consider as the industry moves forward.
Greater collaborative ‘partnering’ between architects, builders and manufacturers is needed to accomplish this The greater speed, accuracy and quality that can result from manufacturing components in a dry, controlled factory environment, together with the ability tom incorporate (yet to be invented) ‘Smart Ware’ gives home builders perhaps the only way of achieving this, together with improved on-site build quality AND controlling costs.
While resistance to the change to DfMA has been the norm, the wish of most UK Builders to deliver excellent customer service and top notch homes is now driving an increasing number to choose Off-Site for their developments. Also, as ‘OffSite Hub” note, architects and designers are moving toward DfMA, something w have been encouraging for over 20 years. The emergence of LA Developers will only speed up this process.
Easy Timber Frame
To assist them in doing so our “Easy Timber Frame “ now offers standard size modular timber frame elements for them to use as a design base, cutting down on technical design and engineering to produce win-win results.