How Lean Construction Practices Are Decreasing Schedules for Contractors

By Akio

McGraw Hill Construction, the Lean Construction Institute, and Dassault Systèmes teamed up to produce an in-depth report on Lean Construction. Below is an excerpt from that report on the the impact Lean practices are having on contractors in regards to scheduling.

Construction Manager


The Impact on Contractors of Schedule Decreases Due to the Adoption of Lean Practices

Reduced project schedule is one of the top benefits of adopting Lean practices, and saving time in the construction industry also cuts costs on projects and can increase profitability.

However, the savings only accrue to the contractor if the owner has not already factored the reduced amount of time into their expectations of the contractor, especially in the case of a negotiated project, or if the contractor has not deemed it necessary to build those cost savings into their bid in order to win a project in a highly competitive market.

The study results suggest, though, that these options are not mutually exclusive. About two thirds of contractors report that the schedule savings they experience due to their Lean practices do have a positive impact on the profit they experience in their projects, and just about the same percentage of contractors report that they are able to bid projects more competitively due to the schedule savings.

Tweet: About 2/3 of contractors report that adoption of #LeanCon allowed them to bid more competitively @Dassault3DS http://ctt.ec/LFmlD+

Tweet: “About 2/3 of contractors report that adoption
of #LeanCon allowed them to bid more competitively”

Clearly, there must be significant overlap of firms who both have schedule reductions feeding their bottom line and schedule reductions absorbed in their efforts to be more competitive.

However, the findings also reveal that the industry is nearly unanimous about the growing expectations of owners that projects can be done in shorter time frames due to the adoption of Lean practices in the industry.

Tweet: The industry expects that projects can be done in shorter time frames due to the adoption of #LeanCon @Dassault3DS http://ctt.ec/R69b4+Tweet: “The industry expects that projects can be
done in shorter time frames due to the adoption of #LeanCon”

This aligns with the previous finding that increasing their firms’ competitiveness rather than direct profits is the larger benefit from Lean.

The in-depth interviews with Lean experts shed further light on this finding. Experts report that, even just five years ago, most owners were not familiar with Lean, but they see a broad change occurring.

Some believe that owner mandates will be the most critical driver of Lean construction in the industry in the future, a shift from what they currently see occurring, other than in one or two sectors like healthcare with engaged owners that have led the industry on Lean adoption.

Tweet: How #LeanCon Practices Are Decreasing Schedules for Contractors @Dassault3DS http://ctt.ec/12v3E+

Click here to Tweet this article


Download the full Lean Construction SmartMarket Report, with our compliments.

Lean Construction SmartMarket Report

Related Resources

Dassault Systéms’ Lean Construction 3DEXPERIENCE® Solution

Lean Construction Institute

McGraw Hill Construction

Does Infrastructure Still Matter with Solutions from Dassault Systèmes?

By Matt H.

On behalf of Kay Freund, IBM NA Ecosystem Marketing, kfreund@us.ibm.com

Multiple industries

Participating in the 3DEXPERIENCE Partner Forum (#3DXforum) in early July 2014 in Paris, I saw impressive new 3D EXPERIENCEs.  What great progress, making possible another set of business-level innovations that will require a very robust computing infrastructure to assure user interactivity.  This reinforced the importance of our IBM initiatives with Dassault Systemes to make sure that the necessary infrastructure will be there for V6 and 3DEXPERIENCE solutions!  IBM provides infrastructure of servers, storage and software, listed in the Dassault Systèmes supported operating environment, which can help you get started quickly and scale as your usage needs.

Total Cost of Acquisition (TCA)

 

Why does it matter?  This infrastructure can reduce the Total Cost of Acquisition (TCA) for Dassault Systèmes 3DEXPERIENCE V6 with ENOVIA, V5 with ENOVIA or SIMULIA Abaqus software.     Let’s look at several examples:

 

Just there, the infrastructure for COE V6 Discovery Project

The COE V6 Discovery project helped a number of companies’ users to discover directly how to best get started with V6.   To allow this discovery, they used the IBM smarter infrastructure of POWER7 server with DB2 and WAS.  These smarter systems are tuned to improve the performance and efficiency of the Dassault Systèmes portfolio and reduce costs by using out of the box virtualization to improve resource usage, manage risk and speed implementation so that the users can focus on their “V6 discovery”.  We knew that we could just run the COE V6 Discovery project because similar systems are virtualized to support many customers’ development, test and production environments of V6 and/or V5.  POWER8 is available.

When should you decide to use DB2 and POWER for ENOVIA?

Each V6 implementation requires a relational database so just consider DB2 when lower cost and higher performance matter. DB2 advantages include lower total cost of acquisition, lower database maintenance costs, especially when virtualization and sub-capacity licensing are used, lower staff workloads and increase scalability.  In one way, I “just” need to pick one of the supported relational data base.  However, as I look at budget, I become motivated to see license and operational savings considerations.  Specifically, DB2 uses less memory, storage and computing time from adaptive compression and faster index performance. Reduced administration is because of DB2 automatic maintenance, storage optimization, faster backup, self-tuning and self healing. DB2 has better scale-out efficiency, superior system reliability and faster set up for high availability. Because ENOVIA is compute intensive and many customers have multiple environments (i.e. development, test, production), DB2 is needed on a subset of the cores so DB2 sub-capacity licensing can significantly reduce total cost of acquisition (TCA) compared to Oracle.  See the article with embedded videos here.

Starting and scaling with 3D simulation

Does it matter for the specialty simulation apps?   Oh yeah!  That’s why we did the IBM Application Ready Solution for Abaqus, a powerful technical computing solution that simplifies and accelerates the simulation environment. This solution, developed in partnership with Dassault Systèmes, provides the system, storage and pre-integrated cluster workload and High Performance Computing (HPC) cloud management software components. This solution helps you quickly and easily deploy, run, and manage a high performance Abaqus computing environment for simulation processes including pre-processing, solving, and post-processing.  See more here.

Like the 3DEXPERIENCE platform, the infrastructure is consistently innovating.  I hope the market opportunity will continue to bring these innovations together going forward!

  • Transforming your industry requires a cloud provider who has done the same.  See www.softlayer.com .
  • POWER8 and the OpenPower Foundation break open the innovation walls, including a partnership with NVIDIA.  POWER8 provides high level of performance, security and reliability with AIX exploiting decades of IBM technology innovation.  POWER8 processor and architecture handles bigger data demands in the cloud — delivering faster insights and an expanded Linux-based open server ecosystem.  See the IBM POWER8 announcement here and the OpenPower Foundation here.

 

Getting the right infrastructure is easier that ever.  To start or deliver faster, please contact Yves Gastellu at yves_gastellu@fr.ibm.com or see the website. 

 

Lean Construction Case Study: UCSF Cardiovascular Building Team Implements “Value Stream Mapping”

By Akio

McGraw Hill Construction, the Lean Construction Institute, and Dassault Systèmes teamed up to produce an in-depth report on Lean Construction. Below is a case study from that report on Value Stream Mapping, implemented on the Cardiovascular Research Building project at the University of California in San Francisco.

Value Stream Mapping (VSM)


Achieving Savings Through Value Stream Mapping

Rosendin Electric was challenged by the project owner to look at ways to bring their projects even more under budget.

As a firm that prides itself on innovation and one that strives to remain on the cutting edge of technology, Rosendin tasked one of its in-house study groups to come up with ideas that would be able to save time and cost.

As a result, one of the approaches they decided to pursue was Value Stream Mapping (VSM).

Process Improvements Identified Through Value Stream Mapping

VSM, in its simplest term, sets out to observe every step of a process and identifies areas where improvements can be made to eliminate waste. The technique was first originated by Toyota and is a lean tool that employs a flow diagram documenting in high detail every step of a process.

The process they chose to study was the installation of pendant-hung fluorescent lights at the Cardiovascular Research Building at the University of California in San Francisco (UCSF).

Light fixtures installed through a more effective process

Light fixtures installed through a more effective process

As a first step, they needed communication to come from upper management to let the workers know that the VSM study was looking for improvements in the process and that it was not a judgment on anyone’s work. The communication also let the workers know that they were open to their ideas and feedback on how the process could be improved.

Joseph Leoncavallo, assistant project manager and one of the leaders of the VSM study, says, “We communicated to them that we didn’t want them to install the lights any faster than they normally would just because we were there watching them with a stopwatch and a piece of paper and writing down everything that they did. So it’s really important to have that honest conversation with the guys working in the field, first.”

The management team, as a result, got very positive feedback from the field. They were excited to be part of a process and to see what could be done going forward.

Bob Weisman, senior estimator at Rosendin states, “The field team want to be successful and to do things the best way for themselves and the company. And we’re giving them buy-in. We’re not telling them they have to do this; we’re saying: ‘what do you think?’ And that’s a big, big deal when you ask people what they think.”

Tweet: Implementing #LeanCon: Tweet: Implementing #LeanCon: “We’re not telling them
they have to do this; we’re saying ‘what do you think?’”

Each Step Taken Into Account to Identify Waste

The VSM started with setting up an observation record where a list of every activity was recorded along with notes. The group started documenting every step of the process, including activities that workers might not ordinarily consider when they are estimating time spent, including answering a question from someone, bathroom breaks and grabbing a wire nut.

The whole process from start to finish was recorded. The group repeated the process four or five times to get a good understanding of the installation process.

As a next step, the current state map was created, which involved taking the observation record and putting it down as a process map. The map essentially provided a high-level overview of every step of the process. After all the steps were mapped out, the group went back and looked at the amount of time each step took. Two levels of time were recorded: non-value-added time and value-added time.

Value-added time is considered time that is spent directly contributing to the installation of the light fixture, such as physically hanging the fixture. Non-value-added time, on the other hand, is considered something that could be done in the factory such as installing an end cap, or it could be opening a box, a necessary activity, but one that does not directly contribute to the light fixture being hung.

The team then analyzed each step in the process and identified areas where processes could be improved and waste eliminated. These areas of improvements were displayed on the map in highlighted yellow, a Lean technique known as Kaizen bursts.

The areas of improvement that were identified included nine steps in the process that could be eliminated as a result of getting the fixture prefabricated by the manufacturer.

Prefabricating Provides Key Opportunity for Savings

Next, the team incorporated the Kaizen bursts into a future state map that displayed the improved process for installing the pendant-hung fluorescent lights.

According to Leoncavallo, “We were looking at about 22 minutes of time that could be eliminated from each fixture installation, most of it due to eliminating the on-site [work on just one component of] a single fixture. Some of that time was non-value added, and some of it was value added.”

Rosendin communicated to the manufacturer their need to prefabricate the desired fixture and were not met with resistance. The manufacturer had the capability to undertake this for them and wanted to maintain Rosendin’s business, so in the end, they included the additional steps in their agreed-upon scope of work with no additional charge.

While the advantage of being a big player was certainly a factor in the manufacturer’s cooperation in this process, this is potentially an approach that any firm could benefit from. Leoncavallo says, “I think [the decision of the manufacturer
to cooperate is made on] a case-by-case basis, but I think the biggest lesson there is, if you don’t ask for something, you’ll never know.”

VSM Study Results in Project Budget Reduction

The time saved on this project as a result of prefabricating the light fixture resulted in the opportunity to reduce the project budget as the team had set out to do.

Weisman says, “I was convinced that we could at least save 15 minutes per fixture on 2,000 fixtures. So 15 minutes times 2,000 comes to 500 man hours, and our labor rate is close to $100 an hour. So I was able to lower my budget by $50,000.”

Tweet: Through Value Stream Mapping, one team was able to lower their project's budget by $50,000. @Dassault3DS #LeanCon http://ctt.ec/7cUfN+Tweet: Through Value Stream Mapping, one team
was able to lower their project’s budget by $50k

Lean Construction Case Study facts and figures

According to Weisman, the $50,000 savings against an overall project budget of $100 million was still considered significant by the owners. Especially when taking into account that overall only approximately $2,000 was spent on the VSM study, the time spent by the person conducting the study.

Value of the Process

Leoncavallo finds the value of this process exceeds the cost savings. “It gives you an opportunity to go out there, observe, really see what’s going on and eliminate waste, which is going to improve your flow and productivity.

“It deepens the knowledge of the installation process …. And the other thing is, it really improves communication between the field and management because you’re collaborating together on this solution.”


SmartMarket ReportClick to Tweet this articleClick to Tweet this article

Download the full SmartMarket Report, with our compliments

Related Resources

Dassault Systéms’ Lean Construction 3DEXPERIENCE® Solution

Lean Construction Institute

McGraw Hill Construction



Page 1 of 121234510...Last »
3ds.com

Beyond PLM (Product Lifecycle Management), Dassault Systèmes, the 3D Experience Company, provides business and people with virtual universes to imagine sustainable innovations. 3DSWYM, 3D VIA, CATIA, DELMIA, ENOVIA, EXALEAD, NETVIBES, SIMULIA and SOLIDWORKS are registered trademarks of Dassault Systèmes or its subsidiaries in the US and/or other countries.