The construction industry had initially been a bit apprehensive about the implementation of technological advances pertaining to their field of work. But today, after experiencing first-hand the benefits of the same, the construction industry is aggressively incorporating modern technologies like drones, artificial intelligence, Agile construction, BIM or business information modelling, 3D printing etc.
Traditionally construction projects included the sequential and continuous flow of steps pertaining to initiation, planning, designing, execution or construction, testing, handover and closeout. Thus typically construction project team consisted of multiple sub-contractors working for one general contractor. An ideally planned project was also supposed to be robust enough to ensure that the project was executed without a hitch or delay. But unfortunately, that is rarely the scene in reality. Project delays, unforeseen problems etc., keep cropping up, of which some are avoidable and some unavoidable. Ultimately all these lead to delayed schedules and increase in the construction costs like material costs, labour payments etc. Thus in order to avoid all these it becomes very necessary to have the right people working at the most appropriate location using the right tools and materials and carrying out correct and pertinent instructions related to it.
What is Agile technology
This thought process forms the basis of the Agile construction technology which defines business ways most adapted to specific construction worksites to ensure proper overall project execution and delivery. An iterative and augmentative process, Agile construction technology thus makes changes to its own process every time it is repeated. Of these the good ones are incorporated while the bad one discarded thereby giving rise to a technology which works wonders on every aspect of construction. It is based on the 7 fundamental principles of:
- Labour productivity and its measurement,
- Proper project scheduling and intensive planning,
- Material management including its procurement and proper utilisation,
- Prefabrication as a means of saving time and reducing the complexity of a task,
- Labour composite rate reduction wherein the cost of a worker that a company has to bear per unit time is reduced,
- Making and improving estimation accuracy,
- Proper financial management of the project as a whole.
Simply speaking this technology enables builders in calgary to adapt easily to changes in the worksites thereby reducing the time between the detention and correction of a risk.
Implementation of Agile technology
Construction projects and worksites benefit from the use of Agile construction technology in many ways, if used appropriately in the different phases like:
Predesign and Designing phase: The designing phase of any construction project is extremely critical to the outcome of the project. In fact understanding the viability of the design that can be implemented in the area selected helps minimise a number of unforeseen problems and issues from arising. The use of Agile technology, however, ensures the following benefits:
- Enhanced customer involvement with an encouraged participation in the final outcome of the construction project,
- Helps to divide a complex project into several sub-projects thereby making them easier to manage, reducing uncertainties involved and enabling better project risk management,
- Increased confidence in accurately estimating the construction cost,
- Bringing about a gradual decrease in the influence of unpredictable elements like the weather by extensively using prefabricated assemblies.
Execution phase: This deals with the actual construction of a project. Every construction project appears to seem very simple on paper. It is only when the actual execution of the design begins that complexities start to creep in thereby leading to improvisation which makes puts the whole construction schedule into jeopardy. Agile technology helps prevent such a situation from arising by:
- Breaking down the deliverables into smaller parts which can then be managed better with replaceables ordered as and when required and also completed within schedule,
- Enhanced time management with regular and frequent reviews conducted in areas specific to productivity as well as profitability, thus enabling proper financial management too,
- Encouraging workers to perform better as a team and also enable enhanced participation on their part by taking their inputs with regards to doing things in a much better way within the scheduled time frame.
The Agile technology software too has benefitted the construction industry because it includes programs to enable proper management of:
- Construction projects,
- Customer relationships and
- Construction cost estimation.
All of these 3 things are crucial for the profitability and the productivity of the construction firm and managing them properly ensures the survival and expansion of the firms involved in construction. Thus Agile construction management technology is multi-faceted software which ensures good project management of every construction project undertaken by the company.