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Construction Thought Leaders on LinkedIn October 18, 2012

Posted by carolhagen in Construction Industry - Software, Lean Construction, linkedin, thought leadership.
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8 comments

What if all construction industry  thought leaders were on LinkedIn?  LinkedIn recently added the ability to follow people you may not be connected to, that are classified as thought leaders (http://blog.linkedin.com/2012/10/02/follow-people/).  While many are business leaders, news writers and public figures,  few are focused on the construction industry.  Let’s aggregate our suggestions and start following these icons – so construction and the AEC industry can benefit from their thought leadership.  Here’s how:

Follow construction leaders you find on LinkedIn

I suggest you start following  Associated General Contractors Chief Economist, Ken Simonson – you can tell he is part of the elite group of thought leaders on LinkedIn by visiting his profile and noticing the “Follow button” – I’m already following and have met him numerous times at AGC events.  See how his profile has a large Follow/Following button rather than a connect button:

Construction Thought Leader on LInkedIn, Ken Simonson

Add to the  Recommended Construction Thought Leaders List

Now there are many other talented people that serve and are dedicated to the construction industry that  are authors, bloggers,  business leaders, educators and innovators that often share their wisdom.  Apparently LinkedIn doesn’t know the construction industry that well so I though we could  get a list going of who should be considered and help Architecture, Engineering and Construction learn at a more rapid pace.  Please add to this list with your thought leader recommendations in the comments.

Brent Darnell – Construction Communications Wizard

Anirban Basu – Economist

Andrew Abernathy – Virtual Construction and Collaborative team building

David F. Carr – Construction Tech News

I’ll update this post weekly with all your additions.  Once we have a list of 25+ compiled I’ll see if we can get them submitted to LinkedIn.  This is obviously a join effort and with the help of the industry we can leverage the construction industry expertise and share best practices, critical thinking, technology and leadership that can propel the future.

Suggest Topics for Thought Leaders in the Construction Industry

Here are areas I’d like your suggestions for:

  • BIM
  • LEED
  • LEAN Construction
  • Civil Engineering
  • Construction Finance
  • Construction Business Strategy
  • CAD
  • Business Intelligence
  • Equipment/Fleet Management
  • Project Management/Operations
  • Estimating

Again make suggestions in the comment section.

We’re all missing out on tribal knowledge.  Let’s pool it together.  Thanks for your submissions and please share this with others.

Lean Construction, Payroll and Equipment Tracking July 8, 2010

Posted by carolhagen in Construction Industry - Software, Construction Industry Hardware, Equipment Tracking, Lean Construction, Payroll Time Collection.
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1 comment so far

Lean Construction has been a hot topic for the past few years and is still gaining momentum. Recently representatives of Mortenson spoke at a NAWIC Greater Phoenix Chapter meeting and discussed renewable energy (showcasing a wind farm project in Hawaii) and how lean construction practices have improved productivity and their bottom line. Since I just happened to attend the 2010 CFMA National Convention in Kona last week, I was able to see the wind mills in person. But I also had the opportunity to peruse the vendor exhibits at convention and found a tool that may solve multiple construction problems in one fell swoop…TeraHop.

TeraHop screen view tracking people

TeraHop in action - tracking people

TeraHop Networks Inc provides On-Site asset monitoring without using satellite or cellular subscriptions. They call their solution the Construction Asset Monitoring System or CAMS for short. With Portable Data Collectors (PDCs) acting as local sensors and network routers, they track the movement of assets and create hopping paths to other PDCs and directly with TeraHop’s Wireless Data Uplink (WDU). The WDU holds the collected data until it is able to upload to a server via wireless or ethernet interface. WDUs also have a GPS receiver to permit localization of PDCs in the network. The WDU generated information from the site-wide data can be viewed from a computer or smartphone at the site or any other location with a wireless connection. So what can they track? Equipment, vehicles, inventory, tools and personnel…basically anything that moves on your jobsite!

After talking with representatives it dawned on me that contractors using this technology are collecting information often gathered when beginning a lean evaluation. Tracking the steps of employees then asking why and what were you doing is one of the best ways to minimize waste and eliminate mistakes, the two mantras of LEAN. Since you can also redeploy you can revisit a jobsite after making lean improvements in task assignments that were to “save steps”, analyze the improvements and adjust again if necessary…a continuous improvement method in Lean. Now add this to the DataMaxx solution and you have streamlined, accurate time collection for payroll processing, inventory tracking and equipment run-time.

Since CAMS can monitor equipment and vehicles, the ability to reduce excessive engine idle time (which impacts fuel costs and equipment wear) is a common by-product from the collected data analysis. Knowing actual equipment run-time will help manage preventative maintenance schedules, eliminate too frequent or late maintenance, and decrease the cost of ownership. You can use this on the jobsite or in your yard to make your fleet managers job easier.

All these process improvements add up, make lean construction worthwhile and more profitable. If you’ve used the TeraHop system or something like it, I’d like you to share your experiences in the comments with my readers. If you think this is a good idea but have reservations, ask me questions. I’ll get TeraHop to respond quickly if I get stumped.

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