Milestones on our Digital Journey

Reviewing BIM and IT progress through 2022

Milestones on our Digital Journey

Written by John Prydderch on January 18th 2023

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Digital transformation is of massive importance in the built environment with benefits as wide ranging as environmental sustainability to process efficiency. 2022 saw Exyte Hargreaves leap forwards in terms of internal and external digital innovations. We spoke to Mark Naylor (Digital Innovation & Systems Manager) and Rob Davies (BIM Manager) to ask about their personal highlights from last year and the associated benefits for Exyte Hargreaves.

What is Cyber Essentials Plus?

Mark, where do you begin with digital transformation planning?

Mark Naylor

“It starts at the very top and we’ve seen from the leadership team that there is a long-term commitment to digitising the business. That’s really critical, having a clear strategy for the business and being able to apply those objectives to our digital strategy. Other aspects are either common sense necessities for any serious business, or standards which are driven by client requirements.

A couple of examples are our roll-out of Two-Factor Authentication across the majority of internal systems, which is a key component of Information Security. Then also maintenance and continued adherence to our ISO certifications and Cyber Essentials criteria. We take a holistic approach to digital transformation at Exyte Hargreaves and as we all know, the digital world is ever-changing and needs constant monitoring and adaptation.”

Rob, how does BIM fit into that picture?

Rob Davies

“Exyte Hargreaves is in a good place in that it is already quite digitally mature, compared to some of our direct competitors. The infrastructure is sound, so as Mark alluded to, our challenge as a BIM team is to respond and react to challenges and opportunities brought by the industry and our clients. One opportunity we took advantage of in 2022, was the integration of available software and hardware which could bring improvements to existing processes.

Revit was already heavily used within the business, but we saw with their Stabicad tool the chance to bring accurate design calculations into the 3D model. The results are more efficient and accurate data for our clients, which is crucially maintained within a central digital repository.”

Which areas of the business have benefited most from digital transformation so far?

Mark Naylor

“We saw a big opportunity to work with our colleagues in the Manufacturing team throughout 2022. The factory deals with a phenomenal amount of design and product data on a daily basis across a number of disciplines. Much of that data was still being managed through traditionally paper-driven processes. We changed that and tablets are now used across the Manufacturing team. It’s a simple change really, but the impact is massive.”

Rob Davies

“It definitely is. That innovation led to another as we were able to completely reimagine our process for fabrication worksheets. Now, a digital output from the design team can be delivered to the tablets used in the factory. It’s made our manufacturing process much more efficient and also greatly improved data security.”

Mark Naylor

“There’s so many innovations which have been delivered or are planned in manufacturing. The potential is massive. With robotic and automated technology complementing BIM-led data processing it’s truly digital manufacturing in action!”

Away from Bury, there's also innovation happening on site, right?

Rob Davies

“Yes, but to be clear, you can’t have one without the other. What we’re building is a digital infrastructure that runs throughout a project lifecycle. Design and manufacturing are stages within that lifecycle, and then it really comes to life on site. We’re fortunate to have a client (NNB) at Hinkley Point C, who has been really supportive of our digital transformation strategy. We’ve been one of the first contractors on site to commit to paperless working and we’re increasingly deploying new technology to support the efforts of the site team.

A couple of examples are Faro Scanner, which enabled the first point cloud scan of site measures at HPC. This allowed the BIM team to digitally model placement of the final pieces of duct prior to their manufacturing and installation. And as we speak the team is preparing for the first test of Dalux SiteWalk. We’re looking forward to receiving the footage and applying its benefits to site inspection reporting and progress reporting.”

"All I'd say is watch this space! There's a great deal of working going on internally, which is unseen by our supply chain, but it all represents other steps on this journey we're taking as a business. Rob and the team have built some productive relationships with our suppliers and they're bearing new fruit each week. Some really exciting potential improvements in the pipeline. And you only have to look at some of the major projects the business is delivering on - it challenges our team to push the boundaries and present new ideas which make good things even better."

Follow our Digital Journey

Follow Exyte Hargreaves on LinkedIn to get the latest updates on our digital transformation journey.

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