Your questions answered: Pre-Construction: How Focusing on it Early Helps Profitability Later
The September 13, 2018 “Pre-Construction: How Focusing on it Early Helps Profitability Later” webcast presenter addressed questions not covered during the live event.
A substantial amount of resources and large portions of budget continue to emphasize the importance being placed on the technology used in the creation of infrastructure projects, but the construction industry continues to struggle to come to terms with and understand the full benefits resulting from front-end engineering design. Companies that master this process and subsequently the ability to deliver on large investments are the ones that will directly position themselves to be highly successful in the construction industry.
Building and maintaining infrastructure is a critical undertaking. Infrastructure projects play a crucial role in our daily lives, and as a result they continue to be in high demand around the world. However, the completion of these large investments must be done successfully so that the individuals, communities and companies responsible for their construction can fully experience their intended benefits. While a completed project can serve a purpose, a project’s infrastructure that is completed the right way can help deliver a positive return on investment for the companies responsible for their construction.
While the construction industry continues to face global competition, intense price pressure, and profitability being driven down by overhead costs, proper infrastructure management and design can guarantee an effective and optimal project delivery. Now more than ever spending time on early-stage engineering design results in more on-time and on-budget projects, but too often the pre-construction process becomes an afterthought. Or, even worse, the pre-construction process isn’t focused on at all.
To achieve success, both for a project and as a contractor, a clear emphasis needs to be placed on the pre-construction process. The foundation of any pre-construction process will determine if and when a project achieves its business outcome. Choosing the right infrastructure foundation will directly determine the productivity, scalability, reliability and safety needed to deliver a project on-time and on-budget.
Presenter Brendan Haas, product manager, Panduit Corp., responded to questions not answered during the live Pre-Construction: How Focusing on it Early Helps Profitability Later webcast on September 13, 2018.
Question: What are your thoughts on pulling "dark fiber" for future use with present copper?
Brendan Haas: I think this is a good idea, but there are some things to consider in the decision making:
1. The timeline for the update or expansion. Fiber and the network industry are constantly evolving. You may not want to pull dark fiber if it will be obsolete in time for its use. That being said, if you pull fiber with copper and plan to use both right away, this would be the optimal time to do so.
2. Distance is a big issue for fiber. Depending on the brand and quality of the fiber, you may need signal boosters (typically about every 100 ft.). This may be difficult to plan, manage, or retrofit.
3. Room in conduit also may be an area of concern, which leads into point No. 4.
4. Removing the copper may be done in the future if there is a transition to fiber, so you would want to balance the added expense here with what it may take to pull the fiber in the first place. This is a very good question as it demonstrates the initiative to be proactive and potentially balance cost, while being reliant on communication and research.
Q: Provide everyone with the statistics used in the presentation, otherwise credibility questioned…
Haas: Panduit wrote a whitepaper on the topic that sites our sources, but some additional citations are below (some are names, some are links):
- Panduit white paper.
- Bent Flyvbjerg’s Project Management Journal article "What You Should Know about Megaprojects and Why: An Overview."
- KPMG Global Construction Survey 2016 – https://assets.kpmg.com/content/dam/kpmg/xx/pdf/2016/09/global-construction-survey-2016.pdf).
- Regarding costs of accidents, verbally referenced: https://www.iosrjournals.org/iosr-jmce/papers/vol11-issue5/Version-1/J011516672.pdf
- Bureau of Labor and Statistics
- McKinsey & Company Good Bad and Better – https://tinyurl.com/y8qr9wgt