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Nottingham, United Kingdom, 2009/05/27 - Hochtief UK goes live with Workspace ahead of schedule, rolling out 'Themis'. The System will address information access and email management.
The UK arm of HOCHTIEF has recently implemented Workspace, a web based information-sharing portal from specialist construction software author, Union Square Software. The new system will consolidate project information in one centrally accessible system and eliminate the problems associated with shared network drives.
HOCHTIEF is one of the world’s leading construction companies, employing over 35,000 people in 60 countries. Their expertise covers rail, road, tunnels energy and marine. They are currently working on the longest rail tunnel in the world - the Gothard Tunnel in Switzerland, and have won many awards for their work including three major civil engineering awards for the Paddington Bridge project in the UK.
Chris Barlow, Financial Accountant comments, “As an organisation we recognised that we weren’t managing information in a very intelligent way. Each department was running their own systems, using their own protocols and procedures for the management of information and document control. This caused many issues such as duplication of information, an inability to access information outside your own department and a lack of integration within the organisation which caused inefficiencies. The management of contacts highlighted some of these inefficiencies; we counted 18 different contacts spreadsheets that were all being updated to different degrees and in addition to this people kept personal contact lists in Outlook.”
Workspace was designed to address these issues and give construction companies a single point of access to all company and project information. Workspace also has functionality to manage emails and removes the need to use Outlook as the primary storage systems for emails.
Barlow comments, “Workspace has a range of functionality that addresses the key issues and problems that we are experiencing, the key benefits that we expect to gain from the system are to:
• Make the business more organised.
• Deliver project information in a way that is accessible to users.
• Have one central contacts database.
• Streamline the business and make us more efficient.
We looked at a number of products but Union Square stood out due to their specialism in the construction sector and their proven ability to deliver results for other companies in the industry.”
A key area that Workspace will address is the management of emails. Barlow comments, “Previously we had no corporate policy on the management of email, different departments would make up their own rules. As a result we couldn’t be sure that commercially sensitive information held in emails was being stored in a way that could be accessible in the future or if they were just deleted with no record of their existence. Now with Workspace we have confidence that every email that goes in and out of the business will be captured and will be able to be found quickly if needed.”
Information Manager Daniel Louis comments on the implementation so far, “Union Square have been excellent throughout the implementation process and have maintained a realistic approach to the project goals and ensured that we have stayed on course. This has paid off and we are now ahead of the planned schedule. Training has already happened on the system and the response from users has been very positive. Its important to keep users engaged with the system so they are familiar when the full launch happens; we have a dedicated Workspace area in the office where we have been running training sessions and a drop in centre so people can come and ask us any questions they might have.” HOCHTIEF have renamed the system ‘Themis’ after Greek Mythology for the embodiment of divine order, law and custom.
HOCHTIEF rolled Workspace out to the Business Development and pre-contract teams in February and to all UK head office staff in March. The next phase of the implementation is to bring sites on board to enable quick and easy access to project information on-site.
About Union Square Software
Based in Nottingham, UK, Union Square Software (unionsquaresoftware.com) is the author of Workspace. Workspace has been developed to provide organisations from across the construction supply chain with real competitive advantage through the pragmatic introduction of portal technology which enables effective Knowledge Management. Workspace provides a range of solutions for project centric organisations including: corporate database, enquiry management, document control and project collaboration.