The New Project Execution Normal

We’ve all noticed a drastic change in our work environments and the means by which we get our work done. We’ve been seeing these changes over time due to specific business needs and an adoption of more flexible work schedules for employees.

But most recently, we’ve seen these changes accelerate at an amazing pace due to the global pandemic. Things will eventually get back to normal. But what will our “new normal” look like when that happens?

We need to start thinking about how we can quickly adapt to protect and grow our businesses. Working remotely and distributed may be something that will stick for a long time to come. This does not have to be a negative factor. Yes, it is different for most, but it can also yield benefits.

We are lucky that we have technology that enables us to work smarter and make the world “smaller.” But we do understand some work just cannot be done remotely. There are no ways around that … yet.

Executing a project in terms of engineering and design is a team sport. Many people and disciplines are involved to make it all come together. Today we have opportunities to leverage technology that will allow us to execute certain tasks in a remote yet collaborative environment.

A lot of time on a project is spent on finding and reviewing information. That data may come from within the company/disciplines or from external sources like other EPCs included in the project or a subcontractor, vendor or main automation contractor (MAC).

Even if we were all sitting in the office, this process of finding, sharing and communicating is often difficult. Waiting on information, not knowing where the document or information is, not knowing who to call to speed things up, having a lack of communication … all of these factors can slow things down when trying to get the right information to the right people in time.

We have seen the rework on project go up significantly over the years. But why are we seeing this increase? Engineers are not receiving the right information at the right time. This forces them to make assumptions about the data to save time or stay on schedule.

Often the right assumption is made, but in many cases the work will have to be redone after the information finally arrives.

We’ve seen projects where 30% to 40% of the work has to be redone. This is, of course, a huge problem and can impact cost, schedule and margins.

Now, what if you could access documents and information from a single source, whether you were at the office or working remotely? What if integrated information from schedules, finance and the field led to significantly faster reporting and more accurate forecasting?

What if you could quickly drill down to unearth the root cause of issues and correct them before they impact budget and schedule? If you can review and mark up the documents, those comments can be consolidated and routed to the right person. On top of that, the progress and status can be tracked against the project budget.

In an environment where project data and documents can be found easily and routed through a set workflow to all parties involved, digitally managing change so that accountability is high and surprises are low should become the new normal … not the dream of a future day.

That kind of solution would be hard to pass up. It will allow many of your engineers, designers, analysts and project managers to work remotely and be even more productive and efficient than before. It will get the right data to the right person on time and reduce the rework, which in turn will keep you within the budget and schedule while maintaining your planned margins.

This “new normal” is possible. We have these answers for you in our Project Collaboration solution from Hexagon, available right now and leveraging the products that have been proven by many industry leaders.

You cannot afford to ignore the new normal in project execution. We can help make you successful in this new environment.

Click here to learn more.

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Frank Joop
Frank is an executive product director at Hexagon PPM and works from the Huntsville, Alabama, USA, headquarters. He has been with the company since 1988.

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