How CDE Enables Highly Efficient Enterprise Workflows in Construction
Is your office still using paperwork, spreadsheets, and a multitude of apps to manage the numerous processes involved in building projects? How long is it taking, and how easy is it, for your office to transfer data between different users, software systems, and departments to keep up with the pace of project workflow?
One of the biggest challenges the Architecture, Engineering, and Construction (AEC) industry faces today is that of workflow management. The business workflows among different teams working on the same project under different disciplines and in different project phases are by default a challenge. With the acceleration of digital information further changing the way we plan, build, and operate buildings, managing business workflows with digital systems faces even more complexities, and so it has become apparent that there are two common workflow management strategies within AEC enterprises: the department or project-level application acquisition and the enterprise-level type investment.
(1) The department or project level workflow management strategy
The first and the most common strategy is the team or department-level workflow management, where members within a department or project adopt simple tools to move work forward. These lightweight software tools help the team to collaborate, organize and manage projects and can be ideal for companies focusing on improving short-term digital collaboration. However, the functions of these solutions are limited, and, in most cases, they cannot be customized. Therefore, teams have to adapt themselves to how these tools work to meet team and project demands. Perhaps most importantly, these tools are usually disparate and unconnected, and thus as the company grows and workflows multiply, it becomes a time-consuming task to extract and connect information from multiple systems and to link cause with consequence.
(2) The enterprise-level workflow management strategy
Enterprise-level workflow design and management is where an end-to-end and scalable digital platform is utilized. Such platform is equipped with comprehensive functions and customizable workflows. With open API, they are highly flexible by allowing enterprises to integrate their own applications and existing systems, ensuring that everything is easy to navigate, and all data is kept in sync. Since information is stored in one place, there is no more looking through multiple spreadsheets or systems to find that one piece of required information. This integrated platform plays the role of “headquarters” for the entire enterprise, managing all data and workflows from all branch offices.
Companies focusing on handling pressing or short-term challenges are more likely to adopt the project-level workflow strategy, as simple tools can quickly satisfy most management needs. However, as the company or project scales, such disconnected tools will not lead to a productivity increase in the long run, but information silos and virtual walls between teams and unintegrated workflows. Organizations with a clearly defined long-term digital transformation roadmap, are more likely to adopt the enterprise-level strategy to greatly enhance intra-connectivity. Since higher standards are expected for digital collaboration, data accessibility, and the standardization of workflows for long-term digitalization success, it is essential that workflows are created, connected, monitored, and adjusted as required to support an organization’s pursuit of higher performance.
From RIB’s point of view, a company with 60 years of technology expertise in the AEC industry and one that has supported construction enterprises and projects across various industries worldwide, maintaining productivity with connected workflows entails a common data environment and connected BIM information.
MTWO Construction Cloud brings together all data, teams, and workflows in one place
As an integrated cloud platform accessible from web browsers, MTWO Construction Cloud brings all project teams together, allowing both major and minor issues in the project planning and execution stages to be dealt with efficiently and correctly. With the MTWO platform at the helm, the workflow becomes connected as well as interactive. Its flexible configuration with mainstream systems further integrates data and process workflows, extending workflows seamlessly across platforms while eliminating the manual work of data transferring. Integrated BIM workflows based on enterprise standards form the foundation for thorough planning and efficient construction management.
MTWO Workflow Designer – the soul of collaboration among project teams
The “Workflow Designer” module of the MTWO Construction Cloud is the soul of collaboration. It defines and creates workflows for different purposes, giving the frame and structure to available activities within the platform, and connecting teams, processes, and data to maximize collaboration efficiency. A workflow, for instance, can be introduced for approval, invoices can be approved or declined, principles can be applied, and structures for monitoring the contract status can be implemented. Both project-level workflow and enterprise-level workflows can be designed and managed with the MTWO platform.
The three main features of MTWO workflow designer:
MTWO Construction Cloud automates processes (i.e., procurement) through consistent workflow integrations such as authorization and approval activities. The platform links workflows to project events and are triggered automatically so that project status is always clear, helping to avoid delays and risks. When the system detects a delayed process, for example, alerts are automatically sent to relevant and designated stakeholders. Additionally, MTWO records all RFI’s (Request for Information) and automatically generates both the inquiry and the reply, meanwhile tracking the status.
As an enterprise-level platform, MTWO serves as the digital foundation of an enterprise. The construction lifecycle is all connected by the data flow in the cloud, creating a Common Data Environment (CDE). Quantity takeoff, estimation, project timeline, and procurement schedules are all connected with the BIM models. One team’s data and workflow can help other teams in the platform with real-time secure access, driving more efficient task assignment, approval, and management.
With MTWO Construction Cloud, workflows can be customized based on enterprise management standards and working methods so that teams are equipped with workflows designed specifically to how they work. Each workflow puts essential information at everyone’s fingertips for efficient task execution. The project comes alive with multiple modules interacting and sharing data, ensuring all relevant parties are kept informed throughout relevant stages of the workflow.
Benefits of MTWO enabled connected workflows:
- Increased collaboration and operational efficiency.
- Reduced redundancies and the likelihood for costly errors.
- More insight into project and business processes.
- Enhanced accountability and project quality.
- Decreased time-consuming repetitive tasks.
“iTWO (the core technology of MTWO Construction Cloud) is the brain or the heart of the entire system, because the technology ensures that the human error that we have in this kind of projects, is kept to zero.”
— Juan Jesús González, General Director of Planning and Organization of Avintia Group
Overall, with an integrated cloud platform at the helm serving as the digital foundation, AEC enterprises enjoy connected master data, streamlined workflows, leaner processes, more productive teams, and better decision making.
Interested to learn more? RIB has developed the MTWO 5D Lab. Here, you can simulate projects in real time using realistic project data. Learn more here.
At MTWO Construction Cloud, we are committed to keeping your teams, data, and processes connected. Learn more about how MTWO can help with your enterprise projects today! Download the Future-Proof Your Construction Business whitepaper below or sign up for a live demo with our product experts and see how MTWO can help your team build better, faster, and smarter.