Digital Construction Week 2022
After two years of lockdowns and remote working, anticipation is high for construction trade shows in 2022. Offering a chance to network and meet with clients, partners and prospects, it will hopefully be a busy year. Our first big show this year will be Digital Construction Week 2022, where Bluebeam will be exhibiting and speaking.
The event takes place 18-19 May 2022 at ExCeL London. I will be appearing on the transformation stage 2.oo – 2.30pm on Wednesday 18th, sharing ways in which organisations can assess and improve their technology stack.
It should be a timely session. The pandemic has undoubtedly accelerated technology and software adoption in construction, with the Centre for Economics and Business Research estimating that we are around three years ahead of expectations.
However, while a lot of this was done reactively, now is the right moment to review the solutions in place and set some strategic goals. Businesses need to look at three things: the overall needs of the organisation, the rate of technology adoption within the business so far and what issues are on the horizon that will influence the way they work. This will help them to create an effective plan for what happens next, including any scaling up or changes that need to be made to the existing technology stack.
Running a technology audit
In my session, I’ll explain how businesses must first start by reviewing their overall strategy before looking at technology solutions. Understanding the organisation’s goals and objectives makes selecting the right solution and options much more effective. The risk of not doing this is that you invest in something that is very task oriented and ultimately more short time, as it is more likely to end up in a silo within the business rather than being effectively integrated, reducing the tool’s overall impact and effectiveness.
I will explain how to use this process to get the business case right, from understanding internal skill sets and capabilities from developing an outline of existing and future workflows. Not only will this ensure that you can work towards the expected performance and return on investment, but it is also an important part of bringing colleagues along for the ride.
I will also explore steps for developing an internal communications and training programme, partnering with technology firms and engaging with supply chains and clients, to provide an understanding of what is needed to deliver a successful rollout and where additional value can be delivered.
A question of scale
The core of my session will focus on one of the other important considerations which can often be missed when choosing a technology or software solution: the ability to flex and scale the solution over time. If you are going to take the time and effort of procuring a solution that will change the way you work and involve significant levels of training, it makes sense to check that the solution can be adapted and will continue to meet the needs of the business as things change – it’s rare that any business stands still, after all.
This can be as simple as making sure that the infrastructure can deliver the performance needed. Or, it could be a case of knowing when to bring in additional functionality as the team better understands and properly uses the basic tools.
The key thing to keep in mind for any digital solution is a degree of interoperability; regardless of what platform or software is being used, common access to data is critical, with systems being flexible enough to share data with anyone who might need it efficiently and consistently. The more this is considered at the beginning, the easier it will be to set a roadmap for using the technology. This will reveal the links that are needed between different systems and teams and will in turn help proactively avoid any barriers or problems later down the line.
At its heart, it is about understanding what a positive ROI looks like for the business, at both project and organisation level. Get this right, and you are already well on the way to getting the most from technology for your business.
To hear more, come along to Stand DE59 at Digital Construction Week or sign up for my session here.