Contruent Blog

Identifying the Thread that Leads to a Competitive Edge

March 2023

Almost every industry is making progress toward increasing automation and digitizing its processes. But the engineering/construction sector lags behind, with extremely costly consequences.

“The construction industry has been slow to digitize,” noted global financial services firm Raymond James in its June 2022 report on software for the construction and engineering industry, “contributing to significant deficiencies in productivity.”

The Raymond James report found that the construction industry has shown a reluctance to adopt automated processes and deploy software that enables data sharing across the numerous departments, contractors and vendors working on projects.

Slow to change, slow to maximize profits

This unwillingness to modernize comes with a steep price tag. According to the report, 98 percent of projects incur cost overruns or meaningful delays, and there’s an average of 20 months’ slippage behind the original project timeline.

You don’t need to be an owner or top executive to see that improving collaboration, enhancing data sharing and increasing efficiency can help projects stay on time and budget.

This can give an engineering or construction firm a significant competitive advantage—one that expands as projects increase in scope, cost, and complexity.

The hard work of driving organizational change

But owners and top executives face the daunting task of driving change across their organizations, of knocking down silos and transforming the “we’ve always done it this way” attitudes that can delay or derail meaningful change.

The Raymond James report identified 14 commercial construction industry disciplines ranging from project management and accounting/ERP to contract/document management and progress reporting.

Within each of these disciplines are professionals who see their data types and their roles in the process in a certain way. Each of these professionals must interact with other professionals in other disciplines across the company—and still others outside the company (contractors, vendors, etc.)—who have their own data types and perceptions of their roles.

For a project to stay on budget and on schedule, each of these professionals must get their data integrated and flowing with the others. The many different stakeholders must find a way to agree on data structure, on level of detail, on frequency of updates and countless other criteria.

Connecting disciplines and data with the golden thread

How do you get different systems to communicate and integrate so the stakeholders can work with the same data at the same time?

You need to find the “golden thread” that connects numerous disciplines and processes—and the more you can connect, the more valuable that golden thread becomes.

Real efficiency is achieved when you can take asset development and carry it fully through the project data stream, all the way to handover and operations.

When you can successfully create a golden thread that connects your data across more and more categories, you can make one and one equal three…or five…or ten.

Interested in learning how the golden thread pertains to change management? Download our white paper.

Project controls software can make the difference

The right project controls software can help you create that elusive golden thread, by integrating platforms, getting different systems to communicate with each other and providing a single source of data truth across the entire project lifecycle.

With the right project controls software, you can more effectively account for change and maximize efficiency. You can improve visibility from project launch to completion, so every decision is based on current, accurate data.

With the right project controls software, you can seize the competitive advantage that gives your firm an edge, project after project.

Want to see how? Talk to one of our professionals.

Looking at the road ahead with Contruent

Interested in learning more about how to avoid costly traffic jams in your mega-projects? Watch our latest webinar that discusses the current state of the construction sector. Discover factors that are driving enhanced adoption of technology and bridging the gap of digitization that has been diminishing productivity in recent years.
Watch now.