Earlier this week, Nine Feet Tall hosted a Construction Round Table Discussion in partnership with COBA Solutions. The event was attended by representatives from construction firms around the UK, including Amey, RJ McLeod, Farrans and TetraTech. The theme of the discussion focused on the fact that effective digital transformation requires IT and business functions to work together to innovate and unlock value.
Lee Yates, Head Of Business Improvement on the multi-billion Transpennine Rail Upgrade, gave a case study presentation on examples of digital transformation and lessons learned from his experiences. Lee recently implemented an industry-leading telematics solution enabling a single platform view on Laing O’Rourke construction sites across the UK, including HS2, Hinkley Point C and East-West Rail Alliance.
The group discussed how traditional views of IT as purely a ‘service desk’ need to change. IT should be an enabler of innovation to deliver real value for construction businesses. Communication can be a challenge as getting a clear and concise message to a mobile workforce can cause issues.
Another challenge has been the timing that businesses bring IT into planning conversations. It pays dividends to bring them in at the start when companies are evaluating the root cause of the problem. Through this change, IT teams can understand the business impact and help to ensure that the solution designed directly resolves the issues. It is also advantageous to develop consultancy-based skills like problem solving and use design thinking techniques within the IT department.
Nine Feet Tall Construction Sector Lead, Dave Durrant said “our construction discussion events are always useful to highlight issues within the sector and find creative solutions. There needs to be passion to change the status quo and drive appetite for transformation. Gathering a team of proactive and passionate people together who understand both the customer and business issues faced is a key starting point for unlocking value.”
If you are interested in attending a Construction Round Table discussion in the future, please contact: DavidD@NineFeetTall.com