How do you manage workflows on your construction projects? Have you made the transition from paperless to digital workflows?
This is the second post of a two-part blog on industry questions regarding construction workflow management. The questions come from 135 registered attendees of an Engineering News-Record (ENR) webinar presented by Aconex on March 25. The webinar featured a panel of U.S. construction professionals representing ANF Group, the Cianbro Institute and McCarthy Building Companies, all of whom profiled their approach to workflow management on a noteworthy project. A replay of the webinar is available at Managing Digital Workflows on Construction Projects: Tools, Tricks & Tips from the Masters.
We’re taking the opportunity to share the Aconex perspective on questions posed in the webinar which we hear most often from our clients and their project teams. You’ll find our responses to the prior round of questions in “Construction Workflow Management: What’s on People’s Minds? (Part I).”
On March 25, Aconex presented an Engineering News-Record (ENR) webinar – Managing Digital Workflows on Construction Projects: Tools, Tricks & Tips from the Masters. A replay of the webinar will be available at this link for one year.
The webinar featured a panel of U.S. construction industry practitioners representing ANF Group, the Cianbro Institute and McCarthy Building Companies. The panel session was introduced by Frank Carron, vice president of global marketing at Aconex, and moderated by Tom Sawyer, senior editor, information technology, at ENR.
The presentations of the panel members generated a number of questions from the webinar’s 135 registered attendees. A subset of these questions was addressed by the panelists during the call. We’re taking the opportunity to deliver the Aconex perspective on questions posed in the webinar which we hear most often from our clients and their project teams.
This is the first post of a two-part blog. Next week, we’ll respond to a second selection of webinar questions.
This week McGraw Hill Construction released its SmartMarket Report on The Business Value of BIM in Australia and New Zealand. The report, sponsored by Aconex and other partners, surveys 435 design and construction industry professionals in the ANZ region, including both BIM and non-BIM practitioners. Among the world’s major construction markets assessed in a previous McGraw Hill report, ANZ ranks third behind the U.S. and South Korea in percentage of BIM users with more than three years of experience in the discipline.
Fifty-one percent of ANZ users are currently engaged with BIM on more than 30% of their projects – and this is expected to grow to 74% by 2015. Over the same period, the percentage of contractors implementing BIM on at least a third of their projects will double, from 33% to 66%. By comparison, 61% of designers use BIM on 30% or more of their projects today, and 56% will implement it on over 60% of their projects by 2015.
To paraphrase the Greek philosopher Heraclitus, change is the only constant in construction projects.
Changes in scope occur as projects progress from design through practical completion. In fact, initial site works can be in motion long before all necessary planning permits have been obtained, designs have been finalized and construction contracts have been negotiated.
Design and construction teams follow a number of interdependent processes to communicate changes and variations in project scope. Many of these processes have been standardized throughout the industry as commonly accepted tools for raising, clarifying and resolving issues. Examples include construction change orders, requests for information (RFIs), instructions, and variation requests.
In a previous post, we offered pragmatic tips on the RFI management process to improve efficiency and reduce risk. Now we’ll focus on best practices in managing scope-of-work changes and variations to ensure successful project delivery.
The successful delivery of construction projects requires precise management of workflows from origination through final approval. Over the last decade, workflow management has evolved from paper and pencil to email, spreadsheets and FTP sites, and from there to enterprise content management (ECM) solutions and industry-specific construction management software. Process control for reviews, approvals and other essential project functions has been automated to reduce risk and cost, while improving efficiency and quality.
Effective workflow management is especially critical for projects requiring collaboration between team members at many different organizations. While these organizations are independent, their project tasks are interdependent. A deadline missed by one individual at one organization could create a bottleneck that impacts other individuals at other organizations, potentially putting the project at risk. Owners, contractors and project managers need to be able to define specific workflows for their projects and then control the execution of those workflows across the team.