Thursday, 18 October 2012

Space Group selects Autodesk PLM 360



This week I visited Rob Charlton (Chief Executive) and Adam Ward (Technology Leader) from Space Group, BIM specialists and new users of Autodesk PLM 360.


 Laser survey of Manchester Town Hall
Mike: Morning guys great to meet you both, after chatting via twitter for the last few years, it's good to put a face to the twitter name! Can you tell me about Space group and the companies background?

Rob: Space group started out a Waring and nets Partnership in the 1950s. Over the past 15 years we have evolved into space group. This process has occurred through our passion for finding more efficient ways of designing, delivering and operation building. Whilst there is a huge amount of talent in the UK construction industry we do continue to do things inefficiently. We are passionate about using technology to achieve our goals.

_space group now includes space architecture who have been an early adopter of BIM and now exclusively use 3D software on all projects. BIM technologies specialise in developing applications to assist in the delivery of projects as well providing support to the whole construction supply chain to deliver BIM. BIMstore.co.uk is an on line library of BIM components. We also have spacehus within the group who specialise in pre fabricated buildings.


Baltic Place Gateshead Quayside

Mike: So what does a typical project look like and do you specialise in any particular area?

Rob: There is no such thing as a typical project however what is constant is our passion to use the latest techniques and technologies to improve the outcomes for our clients.
We work across several sectors and have offices across the UK. Our clients are across the public and private sector. Most of our clients share our passion for improved outcomes and are a central part in delivering innovation.


Laser model of Manchester town hall
Mike: I Really like that approach Rob, so tell me about your experience with Autodesk PLM 360 so far, what are your thoughts?

Rob: We are relatively new to Autodesk PLM 360 and it has taken a few weeks to get our head around how we can apply it to the construction sector. The manufacturing industry operated in a more controlled and structured way. We always use the processes of manufacturing as an example of what the construction industry should be considering. The power of Autodesk PLM360 is obvious to see. However the challenge is how the established processes and procedures in construction can be tipped on their head to deliver improved outcomes. We are now developing a roadmap which will get us to this point. We are starting with some small projects and plan to develop these over time to encapsulate the whole project lifecycle.


Spacehus pre fabricated buildings
Mike:  Can you tell me about some of the processes that you're going manage in Autodesk PLM 360 and what results you think you will achieve?

Rob: In the first instance we are starting with the quotation and delivery cycle for BIM store. This is small enough to manage and will show benefits. We then plan to move onto a construction project and look to develop a Project Execution Plan.
As the manufacturing process for spacehus develops we will look to develop a workflow to manage the complete cycle from order to completion. We also intend to move the whole design process onto Autodesk PLM 360  We acknowledge this is quite a challenge but believe it is achievable.

We are also planning to partner with some construction partners who have expressed an interest. The management of workflows on site during construction will benefit significantly from this new thinking. Autodesk PLM 360 will allow the processes to be far better integrated. At present so many processes and procedures in construction are disjointed leading to errors and waste.


240 Blackfriars BIM

Mike: Excellent I'm looking forward to working with you on these projects. How have you found the cloud based and configurable nature of Autodesk PLM 360?

Rob: We see all of our business moving to the cloud. One of the major selling points of Autodesk PLM 360 is the ease of use. The potential is in effect, only limited by your thinking. We have no issues with the software more how we can change our processes to benefit. We were able to start developing workflows within half an hour.


Cramlington Junior Learning Village
Mike: Do you think Autodesk PLM 360 could become the standard offering in your industry?

Rob: Autodesk PLM 360 is an excellent and flexible tool. It can be configured to suit individual needs. There will be a move to the cloud in the next few years. BIM has encourage new thinking across the industry, as well as the influx of some fresh new minds. The industry will become more joined up and will see the benefit of joined up workflows. I believe we are seeing the start of the next generation of development in the industry which I refer to as BIM2.0. We have moved beyond 3D platforms and are now looking at cloud based solutions. Autodesk PLM 360 will play a large part in this change.

Mike: Thanks Rob, catch up with you next month to see how things are shaping up.

Thanks for reading....Mike
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