Implenia’s technical capabilities are gathered together – and continuously developed – in the Technical Center. This central functional unit also focuses on process optimisations, as well as on sustainability and innovation. Close cooperation with the operating units on these matters is essential.
The Technical Center functions as the Group’s “technical conscience”. Specifically, the Technical Center includes the following departments: Technical Risk Management, Operational Excellence, Digitalisation including Building Information Modeling (BIM), Equipment & Technology Services, Building Construction Logistics, Sustainability, and Health, Safety & Environment. The Technical Center drives constant improvement in Implenia’s technical capabilities by means of continuous process optimisations; as an engine of innovation it creates added value for the whole Group. It also sets the pace in the strategically important field of sustainability and on issues relating to health and safety.
The job of the experts at Technical Risk Management is to identify the technical risks in projects early on, and to reduce these risks in collaboration with the operational units. This process was standardised in 2016 and integrated into the Implenia Management System (IMS 2.0). During the year under review Technical Risk Management added methodical evaluation of customer feedback to the process, and introduced an internal benchmarking system to determine best practices. The aim is to raise the quality of the service and so improve the hit rate still further.
The Equipment & Technology Services (ETS) department brings together the Group’s Machinery & Electrical, Formwork and Materials Engineering specialists. The department’s focus in 2017 was on centralising its organisation and capabilities, as well as on coordinating investments and planning across the Group. This involved the Technical Center bringing all workshops and storage sites in Switzerland under a uniform management structure. ETS also expanded its capability as a supplier of smart steel solutions for tunnel construction. The acquisition of Bilfinger Hochbau brought a team of experts in construction site logistics to Implenia. Building Construction Logistics (BCL), which is now part of the Technical Center, provides its services to internal and external customers.
By networking systems, processes, expertise and people within projects, the Technical Center makes a fundamental contribution to improving the Group’s operational efficiency. Three central tools help the Operational Excellence team in this task: Lean Management, Implenia Management System 2.0 and Building Information Modeling (BIM).
Since 2017, the principles of Lean Construction have been applied as standard in Building Construction and put into practice in building projects. These principles are now also being used more and more in Infrastructure and Modernisation projects, too. This has cut construction times significantly, reduced defects and helped stabilise the entire construction process. The aim for 2018 is to embed Lean Construction in other Business Units and to continue developing methods in the light of ongoing digitalisation.
Implenia Management System (IMS 2.0) gives the Group a facility for end-to-end project management, from initial planning through to handover. This improves cooperation within project teams and makes problem-solving more efficient. Since 2017 the tool has also been used in tunnelling and project development, as well as by the Business Units in Norway and Sweden i addition to its use in building construction and modernisation work. IMS 2.0 now also allows entry of electronic customer feedback directly into the tool. Implenia Management System 2.0 is being rolled out to the Swiss regional business, as well as to Germany and Austria during 2018.
Implenia saw a profound increase in demand for BIM services during the year under review. Market requirements have also risen in parallel with this growing demand. Implenia anticipated this change and has continued to increase the Group’s BIM capacities accordingly. BIM services have been used in more than 250 projects in total. The BIM team has delivered training programmes to the BIM community within the Group, and greatly strengthened its own engineers’ modeling skills. In GC/TC projects, customer requirements often land with subcontractors, so Implenia acts as the expert contact for everyone involved. Meanwhile, as the Group gains more experience, it is making improvements to the digital management of execution processes. The aim for 2018 is to continue rolling out department-specific BIM capabilities, and to integrate BIM even more strongly, not only into planning and calculation, but into the execution process.