Award win positions McCarthy & Stone at the forefront of digital construction

The UK’s leading retirement housebuilder, McCarthy and Stone, was presented with the coveted Digital Construction award at the 2017 Constructing Excellence in London and The South Awards, in a recent ceremony at The Lancaster London.

Constructing Excellence is a not-for-profit organisation that seeks to improve industry performance through collaborative working across the whole sector, including all parts of the demand and supply chain, all disciplines, professions and trades.

Comprising 15 categories, the Constructing Excellence in London and the South East awards recognise outstanding companies and projects that have delivered improvements in all-round performance through collaborative working and a real desire to make a difference.

At the 27th annual awards, McCarthy and Stone picked up the award for ‘Datum’ – a digital information system created by the housebuilder that is redefining how the company operates. Designed to manage and distribute information, and incorporated into its BIM platform, Datum is part website and part database, building information model and digital cost tool.  It is a ‘single source of the truth’ that brings together a series of software and management systems.

Datum has been instrumental in aiding collaboration and the sharing of live information for the housebuilder, which in turn has sped-up workflow. Following its successful adoption in London and the South East, this single ‘cloud-based’ library of repeatable elements, components, and building data will be rolled out across the company’s nine regional operations, with a clear aim to standardise, dramatically improve cycle times and provide cost certainty – and thus, to increase margins over the coming years.

Jadon Silva, Group Product & Development Director for McCarthy and Stone, said:

“Ensuring we are at the forefront of digital construction is a priority for McCarthy and Stone, in what is a milestone year for the company as we celebrate our 40th anniversary.  We are therefore completely thrilled that our innovative approach has been recognised at an industry level – and in what is an increasingly competitive field.

“Datum has resulted in many gains for McCarthy and Stone. Confidence in the quality of designs and certainty of cost have already increased significantly; and the system, once fully embedded, will enable us to design and construct buildings to a higher quality, and to complete the development process much faster. Since the introduction of the digital construction system, we have already seen a 600% increase in rebates from supply chain partners, with a £21,000 operational saving achieved on a single item, and there has been a 10% reduction in design fees.

“We expect Datum also to have a positive impact on customer experience – not least because it will help to ensure each and every homeowner has a better quality property that is well-managed – and it will therefore play a part in ensuring we retain our prized five-star customer satisfaction status. The adoption of digital construction could ultimately have far reaching benefits for the profile of the housebuilding industry by lifting standards across the board, so it is clear to see why we remain committed to leading the way.”

Toby Chisnall, Managing Consultant, Ridgeline Consulting, said:

“To support McCarthy & Stone’s growth strategy, we realised that we needed to look beyond BIM and create a company-wide information management system – and Datum was the result. I’m delighted to have been asked to lead the team from inception to implementation, and I’m even more delighted the results have been recognised with this fantastic award.

“When properly planned and executed, systems such as these can make a substantial difference not just to housebuilders but could revolutionise the efficiency and quality of Affordable and Student Housing Providers, Hotel providers, Restaurant providers to name but a few. McCarthy & Stone is helping a new phase of efficiency and excellence to emerge here, and I’m proud to be part of it.”

Graeme Forbes, CEO of Clearbox, head judge and sponsor of the Digital Construction Award, said:

In this category, we look for examples of how the adoption of collaborative digital processes has dramatically improved the planning, design, fabrication, construction and operation of built facilities or infrastructure. McCarthy & Stone’s approach to digital construction is leading to real business transformation, allowing them to reap the business benefits from a whole life approach. I am really impressed by their leadership, vision and engagement with their people and supply chain to meet their need to drive change.”

McCarthy and Stone will go forward to the National Constructing Excellence Awards, which will take place in central London on 17 November 2017.