This week’s issue of UK industry magazine, Building, has been dubbed the survival issue. After the usual gloomy news of more job losses and companies going bust, there are a series of features on topics like how to spot signs of recovery (not for some time yet, it seems), how to survive the recession, and cutting costs without cutting jobs.
There is also a feature, written by Stephen Kennett, on IT technologies to save time and money. In a nutshell, these ideas boil down to:
- cutting tendering costs by E-tendering (much talk of the RICS e-tendering system – see my recent post on this)
- using collaboration tools improve information flow (I and BIW get a mention)
- deploying freeware (eg: OpenOffice, Google SketchUP, some Autodesk Labs developments)
- streamlining administration with enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems
- introducing building information modelling (BIM shaved 5% off the project cost of Heathrow Terminal 5: £210m, but we are – according to me (again) – only scratching the surface of its potential)
If you want more ideas, I have been writing a series of recession-busting ICT-related posts on my other blog about creative use of technologies to avoid cutting marketing and PR costs. These were stimulated by posts written by my good friend Ross Sturley for Construction News, though his latest, No.7: cut golf days, may challenge me!