BuildUSA’s mission is to provide high-quality, high-performance buildings that are delivered to market faster and cheaper.
Change is Everywhere. All areas of society are facing a similar challenge: to decide what traditional processes are worth keeping (or discarding), and what new innovations should be adopted. The accelerated pace of change causes enormous stress in all sectors of our society and economy, and Healthcare and Building are no exception. To ensure successful innovation in the building sector, many business services and specialties need to be addressed and updated. To name just a few:
1. Building Material Development
2. Manufacturing & Construction Assembly Modules (CAMs)
4. Legal, Financial, & Insurance relationships
BuildUSA’s objective is simple, but its fulfillment requires a multi-channeled solution because there are so many different forces at work in the building industry. BuildUSA offers a compelling vision of Building’s future and provides an organizational path and tools which current industry players can use to succeed in the new era of building innovation.
BuildUSA was developed to define a clear vision of Building’s future. BuildUSA’s mission is to create:
“Higher Quality, Higher Performance Buildings, delivered to market in a shorter period of time and at a lower cost.”
I briefly introduced BuildUSA (What is BuildUSA?) in a previous post. Over the next few posts, I’ll explore the mission and key elements of BUSA in more detail.
The key to accomplishing BuildUSA’s mission is organizing project data using data structures that support and enable all phases of the project and building life cycle. When A/E/C/M teams are creating the core project data, there must be agreement on how this data will be structured and shared. Although the current digital BIM environment has countless advantages over paper or CAD based environments, project participants still operate in silos. Sophisticated teams still re-invent Standards, Templates, and Workflows (Project BIM Standards, BIM Execution Plan, etc.) on a project-by-project basis. Remember, this only applies to the very best teams, and in no way reflects how data is shared in a typical building project. I would argue that the efficacy of high-performing teams is still orders of magnitude away from what the industry can achieve if it harnesses the full potential of its people and digital innovation.
To fulfill Building’s potential, companies need to create and share a set of common “Standards, Templates and Workflows”. Note that this topic was briefly discussed in “What is Building’s problem? #$”, Within in each firm these STWs are of varying degrees of complexity and usefulness. But one thing is for certain, that regardless of the efficiency and usefulness they create within each firm, they recreate the historical silo or moat between companies. Data structures and workflows vary from company to company, a data mess that needs to be cleaned up on a project by project basis.
Many, if not most of the Apps today, assume that the STWs coming out of projects will be either messy or just very different from project to project. Much of the value of these Apps is to provide structure for the project data stew. These Apps are quite exciting and do provide incremental improvements. However, we cannot unlock Building’s potential if we insist on creating project data on a one-off basis using individual office standards that change from project team to project team. Simply put, we still insist that everyone does it their own way, and then look for solutions that will organize the data in a more useful manner. We should insist on project unity from the outset.
BuildUSA intends to create a building “Brand.” Think Apple, Microsoft, Coke. Currently, there is not a recognized building brand. People typically hire architects, general contractors, or developers to be their trusted project representative. Every project is a unique and one-off experience. In contrast, BuildUSA aspires to create a unified brand. A useful analogy for BuildUSA is the historical evolution of the healthcare hospital. In the early 20th century, there was a critical need to assemble sufficient financial and organizational resources in the areas of facilities, technologies, processes, medical services, and business administration to support the comprehensive healthcare needs of a community. At the time, no physician practice or group of practices could develop an integrated health delivery system. The hospital evolved to fill this need, and we now have competing health delivery brands competing in the marketplace (in the Chicago area, think Northwestern, U of C, Advocate, Northshore…) Similarly, BuildUSA will create a branded Collaborative Building Eco-System to unify the various parts of the building process.
BuildUSA has developed a collaborative environment that has been named the CDE + BCE. The Common Data Environment + Building Collaborative Environment. The CDE provides the underlying infrastructure that allows project teams to share data and collaborate in real time. The BCE provides the STWs that have been developed to apply to all stages of a project and building lifecycle. Although the STWs apply to all project types (Boutique, Iconic, Optimized, & Hybrid), and all building sectors (healthcare, commercial, residential, etc.), they were originally developed to support the Optimized building environment and BuildUSA’s core mission.
To accomplish this mission, BuildUSA has developed a business plan named the Prototype Initiative. The PI includes three core elements: Research, Process, and Execution. It has been briefly introduced in the Prototype Initiative, and will be described in more detail in upcoming posts.
BuildUSA… will offer the knowledge, resources and tools to successfully innovate and thrive in our ever-changing world.
The interested party can follow these links to explore BuildUSA’s key elements in more detail: