How NCC used Spacemaker’s data-driven insights to improve stakeholder collaboration

Maria Dantz
Maria Dantz June 30, 2021 4 min read

Summary

NCC pilots the use of Spacemaker 

Tatu Penttinen, project developer at NCC, piloted the use of Spacemaker for their planning of construction projects. The main goal of the pilot was to test if the software could help them analyze construction sites and plans, streamline workflows, and improve the efficiency of projects. In this blog, we hear about Tatu Penttinen’s experiences with Spacemaker and how they resulted in more powerful and effective collaboration.

Tatu Penttinen, courtesy of NCC

Making data-driven decisions

NCC is one of the leading construction companies in the Nordics. Their line of business includes real estate development, construction and infrastructure projects, as well as production of asphalt and aggregate, among other things. “One of NCC’s goals is to build a knowledge-based company,” explains project developer Tatu Penttinen. “The company also aims to simulate the functionality and user experience of the facilities at an early stage. As our decision making is driven by data, it is crucial for us to be able to make use of it in ongoing projects as early as possible.”

Early stakeholder engagement ensures higher project success

NCC works in a collaborative way on its projects where stakeholders are closely involved from day one – this helps to ensure that the end result satisfies all parties involved. Stakeholders vary from future users of the buildings and local residents to the authorities whose requirements the design must meet.

It is essential that stakeholders and local residents are engaged and participate in the development of their own neighborhood; if a development can satisfy the stakeholders, it will thus improve their neighborhood as a whole. For NCC, collaboration is not only part of the project development process; the company takes a collaborative approach during all stages of the construction process.

With multiple project proposals underway at different stages, efficient tools are required to quickly explore the potential of each project as well as determine their compliance and feasibility. These goals formed the premises to explore the potential that Spacemaker’s AI-based platform has to offer.

Visualization enhances understanding

“In my role as a project developer, I have realized that with the support of technology, we can help clients better understand different opportunities,” says Tatu Penttinen.

“Whereas previously a floor plan and site plan – which may be difficult to understand – were shown to different parties at a residents’ meeting, now Spacemaker’s artificial intelligence can, for example, be used to model different solutions and show more details right before people’s eyes. With Spacemaker, you can see the changes and their impact right away, such as what happens if a planned building is relocated and how it affects the environment in the entire area.”

An image from a Spacemaker demo project showing the various apartment types indicated by different colours

In this sense, visualization helps find a common language between different stakeholders, when the effects of change can be seen from a single session. When information is displayed in an easy-to-understand format, it also becomes easier to make better decisions.

Information is the key to better decision-making and dialogue

At NCC, data always forms the foundation for stakeholder engagement and helps to improve dialogue. The more information that is available at an early stage means the easier it is to make decisions. Information is also the backbone of client meetings. Tatu Penttinen: “In one client meeting, the team had a first version of the project already completed with the help of Spacemaker. In the meeting, clients were easily able to get involved in the development, when they could simply follow what happens if the building is flipped on the screen and see how this affects the bigger picture.” As such technology helps the collaborative process become more efficient, and at the same time, multiple time-consuming rounds of changes will become a thing of the past.

Being able to visualize all the necessary data and analysis with just a few clicks allowed the team to easily find a common ground for the development. At its best, Spacemaker also supports the work of architects. Together with other tools, Spacemaker opens up views of different options and shows the rationale behind them. “I personally find it particularly valuable that the changes are immediately visible, and comparison of different versions is possible,” adds Tatu Penttinen.

Cities for people

If we want to build cities for people, it is vital to involve stakeholders in the design process right from the start. Spacemaker has provided NCC with a good basis for this dialogue – especially to complement the more traditional way of presentation with models, plans, and sections.

 

Credit: Banner image courtesy of NCC, photographer Joakim Kröger


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