Productivity Measurements - Data Integration in Construction (Archived)

RT-002a Topic Summary
RT 002a


CII member firms that provide both design and construction services should formulate a plan for integrating design and construction functions through the integrated database concept (IDB). Design firms that have established long-term relationships with owner clients will be better able to develop IDB systems that meet client needs.

There are at present no serious barriers to integrated system development. Minor obstacles to IDP include graphic standards and common commodity codes.

Productivity Measurements – Data Integration Strategies in Construction is part of a set of research conducted by CII in the over-arching area of Productivity Measurements, and published between 1984 and 1988.

Key Findings and Implementation Tools

1 : Construction Methods and Trade Partnering

Two areas that are particularly suited to EDI are special construction methods and trade partnering. Prefabrication, preassembly, and modularization are special construction methods that are becoming more common on industrial construction projects. EDI has the potential to enhance procurement on these types of projects to take advantage of the economies realized with EDI applications in manufacturing. EDI also forces companies to develop closer relationships with trading partners. The outcome of this process will probably be more partnering agreements between engineering and construction firms and their major suppliers. The resulting cost savings introduced by improved schedule deliveries, inventory reduction, and procurement efficiency will be impressive. (SD-57, p. 101)
Reference: (SD-57)

2 : EDI Applications in Construction

EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) has the potential for very tangible cost reductions in materials management and project control areas. However, the U.S. construction industry lags behind other industries and foreign construction competition in its implementation. The potential European construction boom after the 1992 European Common Market takes effect is one reason for implementing new competitive technologies. The U.S. construction industry must be proactive, rather than reactive, in implementing EDI. (SD-57, p. 98) 
Reference: (SD-57)

3 : Pilot Project

A pilot project application is critical to the success of any EDI program. Probably the key outgrowth of a pilot project is the education of the participants and the foundation for future implementations. Only by fully integrating EDI into the overall project management computing system can the full benefits of EDI be realized. EDI pilot projects should be planned and implemented carefully following the guidelines contained herein. (SD-57, p.142)
Reference: (SD-57)

4 : Upper Management Support

Modifications to existing computer systems, whether to provide integrated database capability or implement EDI, should be undertaken in discrete stages, with strong upper management support. Small-scale pilot projects should be undertaken to demonstrate benefits before full-scale system implementation. (SD-57, p. 142)
Reference: (SD-57)

5 : Implementation Tool #1

SD-57, Data Integration Strategies in Construction

EDI Implementation – Provides a logical overview and implementation flowchart showing EDI implementation strategy.
IDB Implementation – Provides a logical overview and implementation flowchart showing IDB implementation strategy.
Reference: (SD-57)

Key Performance Indicators

Improved costs (reduced project life cycle costs), Improved engineering productivity

Research Publications

Data Integration Strategies in Construction - SD-57

Publication Date: 09/1990 Type: Source Document Pages: 172 Status: Archived Tool