ADAM STRONG, MANAGING DIRECTOR, STRONGBUILD
Strong’s conference presentation emphasised the importance of education to build trust in the early contractor involvement (ECI) process. Requiring more than just formalised involvement, ECI also offered a range of benefits including constant refinement of processes.
“Clients generally want to involve us before the concept is evolved. We’ll work with architects and provide assistance where identified risks may be involved. ECI works towards a target price and relies on an honest and close client-contractor relationship. It provides efficiency in the overall design and build process and adds value up front.”
PAUL KREMER, HEAD OF SALES & MARKETING, XLAM
Early supplier engagement is a complementary principle to ECI, according to Kremer.
“Traditional supply is linear in function and information mainly flows downwards, driven by decisions higher up the chain. Suppliers are typically engaged at the end and specification is generated as a ‘recipe’ for what is required. Suppliers are effectively seen as an order fulfilment service.
“Traditional negotiations lead to misunderstandings and the dynamic is adversarial; transactions are often shaped by a failure to communicate and understand each other.”
“Transformational change requires a quantum leap in thinking; a new and different, realistic, approach to addressing an industry problem. The focus should be on building a community of ‘like-minded’ individuals to transition from the current reality to a new version.”
STEVE APPLEBY, DIGITAL DIRECTOR, AECOM
Adding to the benefits of BIM is a qualitative layer of data management and quality assurance, which is where Aecom’s offering can be useful, says Appleby. Aecom has developed DAD – the design anomaly detection system, which is amassing project data globally and will, within a year, have sufficient information to eliminate significant waste from the construction process.
“I’m a fan of collaborative contracting and ECI. I believe in Australia we fall down because we don’t utilise ECI. I came from London 10 years ago and it’s common practice there. Scalability is also critical; we need to think about lobbying government to lock in procurement that will support the industry.”
SIMON WALDREN, MANAGING DIRECTOR, APEX WIRING SOLUTIONS “The adversarial model needs to be replaced by a collaborative model.”
Waldren emphasised that Apex was more than a supplier, with a focus on working with a collaborative stakeholder “cluster” approach from project inception as opposed to the traditional “top down contractual way of moving risk” which led to fragmentation, delays and disputes.
SIMONNE BAILEY, GENERAL MANAGER – CONNECTED LIVING, LENDLEASE
Connected Living is a new business to challenge established models and can be seen as a platform for new thinking and collaboration. Among its many areas of endeavour, Bailey said re-structuring the way schemes are conceived was a key focus. “Future market sectors might include the concept of intergenerational living; providing a mix of products in an inner city environment. A mix of different commercial models would also enable a tenure blind approach.”
“I think we really have to focus on how we can set up projects for success from the outset and challenge ourselves to think about the idea of portfolio arrangements in a huge market and how we can do that smarter. We have to think about outcomes strategically but also technically. Partnering with tech start-ups is one approach.”
GEORGE KONSTANDAKOS – HEAD OF DESIGNMAKE – LENDLEASE
“[Industry needs] a design-led approach that also considers available manufacturing capabilities and supply base. Traditional construction minimises design and crunches suppliers in terms of material costs. Industry needs more providers to foster greater collaboration.”
ANDREW FOWLER, MANAGING DIRECTOR, AUSTRUSS
“There’s a perfect storm in industry, and a need for disruption and change. We haven’t increased our productivity in traditional construction; in 20 years we’ve seen only one per cent productivity gain. We’re not improving.” ■
Simonne Bailey, General Manager – Connected Living, Lendlease.