Members of the Qflow team recently attended the Constructing Excellence Conference in Birmingham where the keynote address was delivered by Dame Judith Hackitt. With the Building Safety Act having recently come into effect in April this year, Dame Judith addressed the room to share her key findings and outputs from the Building Safety Review, 2018 and described the main aims of the Act.
This Act intends to drive a change in both mindset and thinking across the entire construction industry. Dame Judith highlighted in her speech that the Grenfell tragedy should be seen as a reflection of industry bad practice and not just a one-off incident. To prevent a tragedy on this scale from ever occurring again, a call was made for collective responsibility to deliver a change in culture. The objective of the Act is to deliver quality buildings that are safe for people to not just occupy but also to live in.
A key finding from the Hackitt review was that “Design, change management and record keeping was poor both during construction, occupation and refurbishment”. The industry requires a system-based approach to ensure we identify the ‘golden thread of data’. Data that tells us not just how a building was constructed but what materials went into it, who supplied and who manufactured these materials. The new Act will require collaboration, data sharing and better recording of data to ensure that a tragedy such as the Grenfell fire is never seen again.
Using Qflow’s software, arrival of materials onto site can be accurately tracked and recorded simply by taking a photograph. Creating a live, up-to date and accurate log of all the materials being used during construction. All stakeholders involved in the construction of a new building will be required to demonstrate that they have built what they said they would build. Qflow can help to maintain a digital record of every piece of steel, every concrete pour and piece of rebar that goes into a building. High quality record keeping and sharing information must become part of the norm for everyone in the supply chain including designers and product suppliers. If not, there is a real risk that completed building projects could be rejected by the newly formed Building Safety regulator and will be deemed not safe to occupy. This ‘Golden Thread of Data’ will become necessary not just to design and build a building but also to insure and finance a project.
As the industry digests this new Act and focuses on a culture shift, we all have a role to play. A more collaborative and digital approach will be required from all parties involved from design stage through to project handover. Qflow can support you with this shift to a more digital construction approach.
If you’d like to find out more about how Qflow can help you to track construction material data, click here.