April 18, 2024

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Revolutionizing Construction Technologies: Khansaheb

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By: Duncan Payne, Group Support Services Manager

Digital Construction

The construction industry has been slower than other sectors to adopt technology, but it is gradually catching up. The pandemic compelled many to use new digital tools, which has made us more familiar and comfortable with digital systems. Because of this, and because of technological advancements and maturity in the underlying technology, there has also been a of a wave of digital solutions introduced in the construction industry. At Khansaheb we have developed a digital construction strategy to harness these technologies and improve our business. We are focused on enhance our performance, driving efficiency and ultimately benefiting all our employees, supply chain, clients, and other stakeholders.

One area of focus is information management which is critical for successful construction projects. When information is not managed well, it can lead to disputes and damaged relationships, with few real winners. At Khansaheb, we use digital construction tools that take advantage of technologies like BIM, digital twin, mobility, cloud, and advanced AI to capture and manage the flow of information in our business and construction projects.

We collaborated extensively with Autodesk to establish Construction Cloud as the primary project management tool for all our projects. It serves as the digital platform where we handle all project-related information and processes. Consultants and subcontractors interact with us through this platform, while we create a comprehensive digital record of the project. It manages every model, drawing, specification, inspection, issue, photo, RFI, submittal, and transmittal in a single digital space, complete with approval and review workflows. Our engineers and project managers are empowered to be more self-reliant, as much of the administration that was previously involved in our projects has been eliminated. The platform works on mobile, tablet, and desktop devices, giving our staff the necessary tools when they are needed, which has resulted in less reliance on project offices and more time spent on-site managing the works.

Implementing new tools at this scale and complexity is a challenging task, which required overcoming many obstacles such as obtaining stakeholder agreement, training thousands of users, and promptly resolving issues to prevent users from reverting to old ways. Despite these challenges, the benefits have been significant, with measurable improvements in process speed and record accuracy. Additionally, we have seen notable improvements in more intangible areas, particularly in accountability, thanks to the transparency and accessibility provided by these tools.

Digital tools have made it possible for us to automate many processes, including reporting. One area where we have seen significant improvement is in the automated dashboard reporting we provide for our operational teams. With real-time access to critical project information like construction progress, safety alerts, project costs, manpower resources, and site equipment, our projects are safer and more efficient. We also use automation to reduce high-volume repetitive tasks in areas such as access control, data sharing, and device provisioning.

Recording progress on projects has traditionally been done by walking the site and capturing how much work has been completed, but this can be difficult when teams are in different regions or have limited time. That’s why we use a digital reality capture system from Openspace at our projects. It captures 3D visualizations and uses advanced AI to map them onto layouts and models. We capture our projects in detail and view them in a split-screen setup, one showing the latest information and the other an earlier point in time. We use these visualizations to review progress, identify issues, and compare the real-world project with its BIM model. This helps us relate current progress to the design and resolve potential issues early on. We’ve already seen great benefits in reducing rework, improving subcontractor management, enhancing dilapidation surveys, and far better record-keeping by using this system.

We are currently working with the Openspace team to enhance our capabilities in using its advanced AI to measure progress in critical path trades, such as drywalling and MEP installations. We aim to automate comparisons of the measured progress with the planned progress. The system is so impressive that it may seem like technological witchcraft at first glance!

Integration is a crucial aspect of our digital construction strategy. We understand that different systems and tools must work together seamlessly to ensure the smooth flow of information and data throughout all phases of a project. As a result, we have developed strong integration capabilities that have allowed us to connect multiple systems together, including our project management platforms, COINS our ERP system, and applications like human resources and time & attendance.  Through these integrations we have managed to create a unified digital ecosystem for the business. This integration capability ensures that all our digital tools work together seamlessly, providing our teams with the correct information at the right time.

The construction industry is finally starting to catch up with other sectors in terms of adopting digital technologies. At Khansaheb, we have focused on information management, automation, and integration. By using tools like Construction Cloud, digital reality capture systems, and advanced AI, we have been able to improve process speed and accuracy, as well as increase accountability and safety on our projects. Our goal is to continue embracing new technologies and using them to drive efficiency and ultimately deliver better outcomes for our clients while maintaining our core values and relationships with stakeholders.

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