According to a recent study from Autodesk and FMI, a high-trust organization possesses many distinct traits; the ability to share information openly and easily being one of them. In fact, the study estimates that up to 66% of all high-trust companies have a single source of sharing project data. A big part of this is collaboration – with high trust companies making this a core value to how they do business.
Collaboration and transparency are two big reasons why Skanska has built such a strong reputation across the construction industry. With the help of technology, the company improves communication and visibility, starting in the earliest phases of the project and through closeout.
In Part 1 of our series, we highlighted how Skanska creates a solid foundation of trust between all project stakeholders. In Part 2 of this series, Pamela Monastra, Senior Vice President and Head of Communications, Skanska USA Building, again speaks with Steve Stouthamer, Executive Vice President, Project Planning Services, Skanska USA Building, about how technology can help improve transparency and collaboration. All of this helps the company to further solidify the trust it has worked hard to build.
Watch the video or read the transcript below.
Pamela Monastra: How do we start building trust with our customers?
Pamela Monastra: Let’s talk a little bit about the individual. How do they actually play a role in building trust and construction?
Steve Stouthamer: I think you’re the way you behave, right? I’m using that term pretty broadly, but I mean it to say, how committed are you to the work at hand and to achieving the objectives of your customer and your design team?
Pamela Monastra: I’d like to know more about how technology has impacted this journey of building trust.
Steve Stouthamer: When I was a young field engineer, and I had a big roll of drawings and another two big volumes of specifications. The only way I could move those around was to carry them. You would lug those into the field, roll them out, mark up things. You’d try to use your memory and notes to go back and send faxes.
Now, think about today. We can go out with a mobile device and have the entire design at our fingertips, including a model. We can photograph an issue. We can FaceTime with our design team on the spot. We can resolve things much more quickly, and that’s really exciting.
Another way technology has affected us I distinctly remember was from my time as General Manager here in our office. We had received a set of drawings that were called “a hundred percent drawings,” and we’d like to really go through those and look to make sure no information was missing. The more we can route out during design, the less likely we’ll have changes in the field.
We took those design documents and used Navisworks Clash Detection, and quickly identified several hundred issues that needed to be resolved in the design, where mechanical systems intersected structural elements and architectural elements. The time that took was hours, not weeks, and it was days, not weeks for the designer to make changes to remove a lot of those things – it’s tremendous.
Pamela Monastra: Technology, great advancements in our industry. Are there issues?
Steve Stouthamer: There are lots of emerging technologies hitting the market. I’ve seen slides where it’s just compounded like tenfold every year, and it can overwhelm our teams a little bit. Right now, we see more products to solve a single function. I think we’d like to see fewer products that solve multiple functions, and that can help us with many things. It can help us with data collection, too, as we do not have to rely on so many systems to speak to one another. That would be my caution.
To learn more about how construction professionals think about trust and what you can do to elevate trust across your organization, download our report, “Trust Matters: The High Cost of Low Trust”.