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Balfour Beatty use Asite for the Building Schools for the Future project and achieve their BREEAM initiatives 

The Challenge

Balfour Beatty were tasked with delivering a Building Schools for the Future (BSF) project in Sunderland with an approximate construction value of £100m, which started in March 2008 and completed in 2010. The project included both new build and refurbishment works to deliver three academies and three schools.

The scale of the project required a solution that enabled the multiple project teams to share data in a timely manner so that information was accessible to build a better design, ensure deadlines were met and that the overall project be completed on time and on budget.

Balfour Beatty required a project management solution that:

  • Enabled multiple project teams to collaborate more effectively and efficiently
  • Be accessible, fast and easy-to-use
  • Provided the highest level of security of all documents and data
  • Offered full support for implementation and day-to-day utilisation including after-care
  • Created cost saving opportunities with measurable outcomes

The Solution

After analysing Balfour Beatty’s workflow processes and fully understanding their objectives and expectations, Asite designed a project implementation plan for achieving Balfour Beatty’s Development Information Management Strategy. The solution was tasked with improving collaboration between Balfour Beatty’s project teams to enable them to work more efficiently. Having identified current inefficiencies, Asite assigned a consultant to work closely with the project team and customize the solution to fit directly with the way the team worked and with best practice.

Asite and Balfour Beatty worked closely with the project team to manage the cultural change and maximise the use of the solution with minimal training requirement.  After the implementation, Balfour Beatty had on-going access to Asite’s support team for the day-to-day use of Asite, with on-going support from an experienced consultant.
Asite’s solution provided the following key features:

  • An easy-to-use secure cloud platform for real-time collaboration
  • Document management for version control
  • A tracking and audit trail process for greater control and visibility
  • A secure area for all approved documents and archives
  • Full training, support, consultancy and after care

The Benefits

When the project completed, it revolutionised education in Sunderland by introducing cutting edge technology to classrooms and creating 21st century buildings. Using Asite, Balfour Beatty teams were able to manage, share and access drawings and documents securely from any location with Internet access. They were able to collaboratively coordinate design information for each building and store data in one central, fully auditable repository in the cloud. Teams given access were able to view, comment and mark up the latest revisions in real-time, creating a more effective and efficient workflow process. The design team also identified solutions early on in the design process to help focus on creating a better design.

The increased transparency created time and cost savings and provided a longer term view over the entire project. Balfour Beatty also delivered on their BRE Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM) submittal requirements for evidencing the delivery of fully sustainable solutions via Asite. They achieved this by using Asite’s AppBuilder to develop forms to manage all of their BREEAM reports and contract information. The improved business efficiencies helped to increase Balfour Beatty profit margins as a business overall.

After the completion of one of the schools, Washington School was awarded a Green Apple Award for Environmental Best Practice for the modern yet environmentally friendly building delivered. Some of its features include rainwater recycling, solar power, a centrally controlled building management system, proximity infra-red systems and potentially the largest green roof on a school in England.

On the strength of BSF Sunderland, Balfour Beatty has implemented Asite for its upcoming projects and is exploring the use of Asite cBIM for managing model files across its design teams.

Balfour Beatty achieved the following results from using Asite:

  • Time and cost savings
  • Environmental benefits from the reduced use of paper
  • Greater communication – information was instantly accessible, improving the exchange of knowledge and feedback.
  • Increased control & transparency – the presence of an audit trail created greater accountability and ownership so project deadlines were met.
  • Security – data was stored in a highly secure environment, including providing users with unique log-ins, separate secure areas and a robust audit trail.
  • Customer service – first class support from the Asite support team and consultant
  • Improved utilisation of information
  • Reduction in design errors
  • Tasks and project deadlines met and completed on time
  • Teams focused on best design practice within their organisation
  • Achieving their BREEAM initiatives 

Company Profile

Balfour Beatty is a world-class infrastructure services business operating across the infrastructure lifecycle, with leading positions in major markets. In over 80 countries, in diverse markets and economies, we provide the assets societies need to function, develop and thrive.