Digital transformation for the construction industry

October 30, 2018 by Dr Hari Gunasingham with Alf Moroncini and Reinhold Wieland, Connecting Buildings
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Digital transformation for the construction industry

The tenant demand for smart services continues to increase, and the construction industry needs to meet these needs to stay competitive. However, packing your premises with trending technologies will often create as many problems as it solves.

Increasingly advanced systems and IoT technologies represent dozens of improvements to the workflow and output of businesses, as well as the efficiency and quality of facilities and property management services. However, poor implementation often leads to greater costs, and unwieldy levels of operational complexity.

The silo approach to implementing these technologies actively undermines the many benefits that are possible. Unlocking the powerful possibilities of Smart Buildings requires resolving this issue at its source.

The current approach across the industry is leaking efficiency, and wallowing in wasted potential. Technology and physical spaces are integrating at a rapid rate, and we need to adapt quickly to meet the future needs of the construction industry.

With a lack of cohesion across the lifecycle, building operators are hampered by unfinished buildings, incomplete commissions, and a virtual pile of scattered PDFs. With such shaky foundations, it is little wonder that ongoing operations and commissions fall into an inefficient slurry of isolated silo systems.

Design, delivery, and management of a construction project needs to be fully unified and replace this silo approach at both the design and operations level.

Smart Buildings are more than simply automatic lighting and CCTV, they provide continual feedback and support; automating human processes, increasing efficiency, enabling commissions empowered by cloud services and technologies, and connecting people with systems like never before.

The Solution

To unlock the full potential of Smart Buildings, you need to seamlessly integrate your smart infrastructure and workflow systems using a combination of automation processes utilizing real-time data flows.

You need a single integrated platform to optimize performance across the complete lifecycle of your assets. One that comprises all elements from design, procurement, and implementation, through to the commissioning, operation, and maintenance of smart services.

A new change is transforming our industry, affecting construction, handover, and the complete building lifecycle from day one. Design and operations are tied closer than ever before and require a new process that bridges the current gaps in the market. Lifeless, static, design documents and BIMs must be drawn into a cohesive, living system that operates in real time - a Digital Twin.

Through C2O and Smart BIM, buildings can fully merge with the digital space, optimizing the efficiency of operations and maintenance management to reduce energy costs and extend the lifetime of equipment.  

Introducing C2O and Smart BIM

Commission to Operate (C2O) is a methodology to cover the complete lifecycle of asset management.
C2O integrates and automates a variety of tasks across the entire process, from construction, right through to operations. Automation for subsystem and IoT point configuration, as well as testing and acceptance, deliver a smooth transition to an Operational BIM.

The C2O process culminates in the delivery of a fully functional Digital Twin for the building, allowing for real-time automation and monitoring of all integrated smart systems across the entire asset lifecycle.

The first process step is construction of the Smart BIM. Through the fusion of IoT and BIM, a complete, working model that encompasses all aspects of a Smart building can be utilized as a powerful operational tool. Through C2O, CAD files can be seamlessly converted into Operational BIM when, for many current projects, BIM files are not utilized after construction is handed over.

Smart BIM provides a live dashboard that can highlight key areas of attention across all aspects of building management. The day-to-day operations of different systems and devices are simplified and presented in abstract, streamlining separate manufacturers and models into a single, usable interface.

Lighting, air conditioning, security cameras and doors, and many more IoT devices can all be integrated into the system. Through the Iviva software platform, Smart BIM provides a companion to Autodesk 360 and Forge.

More connections make for more integration, dramatically scaling the capacity of building management services through enhanced real-time interaction. Through C2O and Smart BIM, buildings are brought to life in the digital space, as a Digital Twin.

Realizing the Potential of a Digital Twin

The implementation of a Digital Twin enables much more than automated operations and monitoring. With a detailed and accurate model of the premises, commissions can be tested, measured, and evaluated before any physical work is initiated. Test case automation can dramatically reduce the resource requirements for commissioning, and uncover errors, redundancies, and incompatibilities in the initial stages of design.

The complete package of Smart BIM, C2O, and Digital Twin services provided through the Iviva platform will spark a fundamental shift in the design, construction, operation, and upgrading process for Smart Buildings.

Seamless access to the commissioning history of a building is compiled directly into the C2O process. When combined with real-time data gathering and predictive modelling, a complete picture is established of the past, present, and future of a Smart Building. This represents significant improvements, as many current projects are not fully commissioned, and commissioning is typically recorded on ineffective Excel spreadsheets.

Improving the visibility of all assets across the lifecycle management process enables cleaner collaboration between stakeholders. By combining typically separate elements into a single, unified system, communication between building management staff, commissioning agents, as well as tenants and clients, can reach new levels of clarity and effectiveness both before and after handover.

Measurable Benefits

You will reduce initial and ongoing costs, whilst simultaneously increasing productivity and the quality of the workplace.

That’s because CO2 and Smart BIM unifies your disconnected systems. This results in more data input, allowing for precise automation that adapts to the given needs of a premises. Your systems can adapt in real-time, providing enhanced operational effectiveness through a wide range of efficiency improvements.

Enhance environmental quality by 70% - By using automated environmental systems, such as lighting and temperature control.

Reduce implementation costs by 20% - For new devices and systems. And resolve potential issues prior to installation and implementation.

Increase productiveness by 50% - Through a combination of enhanced collaborative abilities, accessibility, and automated services.

Reduce operational costs by 30% - For energy consumption, space requirements, and labour costs.

We are Connecting Buildings. Join us at the Smart Building Show in London on November 7-8 for the launch of our C2O, Smart BIM, and Digital Twin services.

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