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Leading with data - reactive or proactive

Leading with data – reactive or proactive?

Author: Anni Hirvonen
Published: 2.2.2021

In the complexity of construction projects, it’s easy to see only the direct costs but what gets missed too often is the 10 times more costs and work that are indirectly caused by errors, deviations and non-optimal decisions. Sakari Pesonen reckons this may be the reason why builders tend to be a little more reactive rather than proactive. Despite the fact that proactivity would be much better business.

The video has subtitles in English

The effect of errors on costs and the entire business is often massively underestimated. One of the most important reasons for that is the hidden, indirect costs. Creating situational awareness and making use of the situational data proactively has, however, required progressing one step at a time.

Let’s take quality control and quality inspection data as an example. When the site supervision manages the work quality at the construction site and marks any found quality deviations, for example, in a mobile application, it becomes possible to use the collected quality data in forming data dashboards that show how many quality deviations there were on a given site on a given year. However, that alone is not terribly useful.

Your guys aren’t even fixing the faults even though we told you to.

A little more developed dashboard shows, at the company level, in addition to the number of quality deviations, also how many of them have been fixed and how long the open deviations have been open. This already takes us forward, but it’s still in the reactive world – still focusing on looking at the deviations instead of preventing their creation from the start.

Proactive construction intelligence

The proactive situational dashboards strive to show and measure the quality management actions that have been done before starting the job. By analyzing the data at the company level, it’s possible to see, for example, that sites that complete their task planning, meetings and model inspections according to given procedures, face significantly less quality defects. This allows affecting the amount of formed quality deviations on all sites – by putting effort into proactive quality management activities.

The next step is to combine data on the construction project from various data sources and process their combination into situational dashboards that guide us to proactivity. This allows us to predict even better, prevent errors, understand earlier and deeper how we can affect the potential deviations, costs, and problems, and prevent them from forming up before they materialize on site. That’s construction at its best.

About the vlogger

Sakari Pesonen is responsible for sales and customer accounts at Fira Smart. Sakari has about 20 years of experience from the construction industry, and he has worked in various roles, for example, as a construction manager in pipe repairs and residential contruction projects.

Sakari has participated in developing data-driven situational awareness for the past 5 years both from the viewpoints of the site and the headquarters, and speaks today about the importance of the topic from true field experiences.

Contact Sakari and he’ll be happy to discuss the possibilities on leading with data with you!

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