Insights and best practices for construction management technology and project delivery

  • December 1, 2017

Key Dimensions of Capital Project Delivery Transformation

Earlier this month, I joined Oracle colleagues and 1,500 or so fellow project delivery professionals at the Project Controls Expo in London, where attendees were looking to find inspiration and ideas from peers – and to capture those nuggets of wisdom that could make a difference at their own organisations.

It was great to see so many old friends and meet new ones to discuss what the future of project delivery will look like, our vision at Oracle Construction and Engineering (or as many of you still know it, Primavera), and how we are working together with customers to innovate and continue to drive greater productivity and improve project outcomes generally.

Throughout the discussions at the Project Controls Expo, several themes were apparent: transformation, digitisation, supply chain collaboration, and embracing current best practices. This sat nicely with my own presentation, in which I explored how technology can be an engine for transformation and generate significant efficiencies in project delivery. Indeed, a McKinsey report I discussed in a recent post found that a comprehensive and efficient application of current technologies could reduce total project costs by more than 20 percent. 

In terms of digitisation efforts, we have found that the key to driving real transformation in capital asset lifecycle management is embracing an approach that encompasses these key areas:

  • Enterprise investment planning: This entails ensuring  that the management of portfolios, capital planning, funding, and project selection are done collaboratively across the entire organisation.
  • Scope definition and stage-gate governance: Organisations can derive benefits from ensuring scope is developed and fully defined at the required level for each stage gate prior to approval. This helps ensure the construction phase involves as little change as possible.
  • Integrated planning: A key best practice in successful project execution is integrating schedule and resource planning, and we have seen many organisations benefit from leveraging cloud technology to achieve the visibility, coordination, and control offered by such an approach.
  • Supply chain governance and standardization: Because as much as 90% of a CapEx project is delivered by the supply chain, it’s critical that technology and process support how they interact with owners – and ensure these interactions follow a common/standard approach that reflects modern best practice.
  • Cost controls: A portfolio approach is crucial to supporting this function, and as the supply chain is heavily engaged – and often remote – the approach (and supporting technology) should enable the needed level of collaboration.
  • Change management: Change happens, so it must be managed effectively. A key role of technology is ensure that valid changes are processed quickly while spurious ones are easy to identify and reject – all while providing appropriate visibility into change management to stakeholders.
  • Mobility: Ensuring connectivity between field and office can deliver a range of benefits, including increased productivity, enhanced visibility into status and issues, and improved/accelerated decision making.
  • Near-real-time analytics: Bigger, better and faster data will enable stakeholders to manage projects new and better ways, including improve the predictability of outcomes and – critically – the repeatability of successes. 

In discussions with numerous organisations at the event, it was clear that these areas resonated, and many are already on a journey to transform project delivery using this foundation.

Should you want to learn more, my entire presentation from the Project Controls Expo is available to watch on demand. And be sure to read our other post from the expo, in which a colleague explores the innovative project management methodology embraced by the UK Infrastructure and Projects Authority, as well as the great work being done by the Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority to prepare that city to host the Olympic Games. Finally, you can visit us at Oracle Construction and Engineering to explore how we are helping organisations plot their own course into the future of projects.


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