Intimate forums allow once guarded preconstruction professionals to discuss challenges and create innovative solutions to those challenges. In 2019, construction firms around the country have increasingly begun opening up their channels of communication with each other. This increased communication has also led to increased collaboration between companies so that they can brainstorm solutions to some of preconstruction’s biggest challenges. In order to provide preconstruction professionals with an easier way to share these ideas, Beck Technology has begun leading forums across the country. These forums—thanks to the diversity of their attendees in experience and employment—have produced innovative solutions to many of the common obstacles that arise in preconstruction.
One of the greatest outcomes of these industry forums has been the creative solutions that attendees have generated by sharing and critiquing each other’s ideas. Instead of simply commiserating over shared challenges, preconstruction members have been generating answers to these problems, and have even taken it a step further by challenging one another to make an active effort in implementing those solutions within their individual companies.
During this year’s annual Advancing Preconstruction and Estimating Conference, Beck Technology held a pre-conference workshop in which they polled attendees as to what they thought were the top ten challenges facing preconstruction today. These challenges were as follows:
- Lack of historical data
- Lack of standardization
- Silos of information/knowledge-sharing
- Attracting and retaining talent
- Incomplete designs
- Timely decision-making
- Lack of integrated tools
- Client demands/budget
- Accuracy of available data
- Owner expectations/education
The discussions at Beck Technology’s forums have centered around three to four of these concerns, chosen ahead of time by registrants.
The solutions have been varied and innovative. Some solutions include centralizing notes and utilizing curriculum software in order to make access to information easier for preconstruction teams; creating videos for both internal and external use, such as quickly updating stakeholders on key milestones in a project or providing subcontractors with detailed walkthroughs; and developing project outlines to help the other party avoid rework in addition to wasted hours in reading hundreds of pages.
The overarching conclusion from these forums has been that offering a space where preconstruction professionals can come together to share their challenges and brainstorm ways to overcome them has been extremely beneficial. Many attendees commented that without the opportunity to keep having these conversations, silos of information across the industry spring up, and prevent everyone from improving and growing their companies. Individuals who are willing to lead the charge on opening up to talk about these challenges and solutions are leading collaboration and innovation in the preconstruction world.