A construction operation is typically complex, multi-functional and one that requires fine margins and best-case scenarios to be aligned in order for optimal outcomes. Construction companies can gain significantly, by ensuring effective management of workflows and interactions between collaborating entities. Having coherent visibility into sequential as well as concurrent functions is crucial in integrating interdependent elements. Taking an approach of holistic project alignment can help each segment contribute optimally to the workflow and create optimal results, across the entire value chain.
Contemporary construction businesses are highly involved and require complex operations, both on-site as well as in their back-office and administrative aspects. With the industry functioning on new technologies, tighter operating schedules and budgets and competitive pressures due to customer expectations, construction businesses are now operating in a more complex ecosystem than ever before. Bigger workforces, more involved collaboration needs and very specific process requirements such as RFIs and submittals are introducing obligations that require highly targeted and effective workflow management.
While digital solutions that attempt to address these requirements have been introduced, the multiplicity of interfaces, applications, and process requirements can add to the complexity, rather than making things simpler.
To tackle these obstacles in the construction industry, a vertical cloud solution called MTWO has been developed in a collaboration between RIB Software SE of Stuttgart and Microsoft. A combination of RIB’s flagship product iTWO 4.0 and Microsoft Azure Dynamics services, MTWO is a viable basis for enterprise-scale digital transformation that can transform the performance of any construction project or enterprise. Used in conjunction with Dynamics 365, or in isolation, the solution can help construction businesses achieve optimal management workflow.
Integrating Technology into Construction Management Workflows
The intricacies involved in a construction project have always required a high degree of coordination and management. Although the industry has a history of being a slow adopter of digital technologies, recent years have witnessed a dramatic increase in the number of software developed specifically to address the industry’s needs. In turn, the construction sector too seems to have turned a corner and realized the value in harnessing the power of digital tools.
The construction sector is now emerging as one of the most specifically served by innovations and technology-derived strategies. With urban rejuvenation and development initiatives becoming ever-more prevalent around the world, megaprojects are more frequent. Standard projects are also aspiring to reach bigger scales, faster delivery, and greater efficiencies. This evolution in approach has resulted in the development of digital management and collaboration tools such as 5D BIM Modeling platforms and enterprise-scale management systems designed specifically for the construction sector.
Unlocking unprecedented efficiencies in the construction industry requires the entire process chain, from design to fabrication and across all involved workforces to be synchronized and made receptive and agile enough to leverage data-driven insights.
The advantages that digital tools can create, in the context of construction management workflow, are:
Unified Data Platform: A common data platform gives intuitive and coordinated access to project information to all workforces and decision-makers. Being able to have visibility across contractual and design documents, RFIs, markups and all relevant data is a priceless advantage for such a large and multi-dimensional operation.
Seamless Workflow: With quite large variations commonplace in standards, procedures, and processes – from one project to another – managing workflows becomes an even more important basis for ensuring coherence in operations. From workforce accountability to standard operating procedures, good management of workflow enables greater control over processes.
Reduction in Human Error: Digitization and automation are excellent means to ensure that outcomes are standardized and human errors are limited or eliminated.
Faster Processes: Project scheduling is a particularly competitive aspect of the modern construction landscape. Enterprises are required to do more in less time, thus making digital tools an essential enhancement of processes and organizations.
Adoption of Future-Ready Practices: With the Evolution of solutions, such as 5D BIM and other industry-specific workflow management tools, it’s become a necessity for construction enterprises to adopt these practices in order to remain competitive, as well as to effectively coordinate with collaborators.
For a construction business to perform optimally, management of its workflows is of paramount importance. For all stakeholders to collaborate effectively in the service of the project profile, having an overarching means to manage and create synergy can make all the difference. In such a scenario, the management of the workflow is a proven methodology to optimize performance.