Case Study on Changing the Face of Project Controls Utilizing Integrated BIM and Field Software

Center for Integrated Facility Engineering at Stanford University researchers document significant benefits of integrated BIM and field computing solution.

REDWOOD CITY, CA / HELSINKI, FINLAND / BOSTON, MA - DPR Construction leverages an integrated combination of Tekla Structures Building Information Modeling (BIM) and Vela Systems field software in its doors, frame and hardware (DFH) self-perform construction business.  Today the three companies announced the availability of a case study profiling the implementation and benefits of this integrated combination.    This case study will also be explored in a webinar to be jointly offered by the companies at 1:30 EDT on Wednesday, November 11, 2009.   Visit to reserve your seat for the webinar.

The Case Study
During construction of the University of California, Santa Cruz Porter B College, DPR Construction used field mobility software, tablet computers and BIM to manage all aspects of the DFH process.  The usual DFH workflow involves tracking progress of doors, frames and hardware receipt, quality inspection and installation by making notes on paper logs and drawings and then spending  time explaining, fixing and manually updating printed progress reports.

DPR Construction chose to replace this traditional workflow with a process that is centered on BIM and material tracking using construction field software. Through this 'connected' project control system, all of the information became immediately available to every project team member. Vela Systems synchronized the status information to the Tekla Structures BIM model either from the office or the field.  After synchronization, the status of any component was then readily available to project managers, superintendents and others in both a report format or in a 3D model.

The Benefits
The benefits of implementing and utilizing this system were reported in a research project affiliated with the Center for Integrated Facility Engineering (CIFE) at Stanford University.  Three key benefit areas included: 1) Time Savings, 2) Clear Project Visibility, and 3) Reorder Rate Reduction.

The researchers studied the DFH workflow processes before and after the implementation of the integrated Field BIM system.  Using the integrated system DPR Construction realized the following benefits:

  1. 28-hour savings (70% reduction) of the recording, documenting, reporting and communicating in the field
  2.  20% work productivity improvement
  3. Ability to instantly calculate accurately project progress and manpower statistics;
  4. Improved visibility into the availability of openings materials such that zero unnecessary reorders were needed for the project.

The benefits and future potential of this combination were also noted by the Operations and Virtual Design and Construction teams at DPR.   "The 2% of job cost related to QA/QC and reorder is now 'virtually nil.'", commented Lisa Thomas, Manager, DPR DFH Division. Atul Khanzode, DPR Director of Virtual Design and Construction added, "Connecting the structured information contained in BIM to the jobsite through field software enables new paradigms of project delivery and control.  This case study in the area of Doors, Frames and Hardware is one example of what we think is a very large opportunity to transform our industry."