Achieving successful digitization in structural steel construction in 8 steps

In the steel construction industry, a significant focus is now placed on automating and digitizing the structural steel production process. Many companies have already adopted computer-controlled (CNC) machines. With recent advancements and techniques, the flow of information to factory employees can also be digitized, providing numerous advantages. These include reduced failure costs, the elimination of unnecessary meetings, up-to-date work drawings for employees, no printing costs, and easy implementation of changes. Embracing digitization and automation aligns with the vision of working smarter, and thus, a “smart factory”.

Regardless of the specific reasons for pursuing digitization, the process always begins by asking why the company wants to digitize. Following this initial inquiry, subsequent steps lead to a smarter and more efficiently organized structural steel production process. We provide a clear step-by-step plan to help you get started. Have you taken the first step yet?

1. The why

Every journey begins with asking “why.” Without addressing this question, it’s challenging to gain support within the organization for the changes involved in digitization. If this question goes unanswered, no one will know which problem needs solving, and there may even be varying reasons within the organization for wanting to start digitizing. Establishing a clear goal for digitization ensures a focused approach and boosts motivation within the company to embrace the new working method.

2. The underestimation

The shift to digitization represents a significant change for the organization. Familiar processes will evolve, and working methods will be altered. It’s essential to understand that these changes require time and adjustment and may encounter resistance. Be sure to account for this in your project plan and involve your employees in the transition. The consultants at ConstruSteel are ready to assist you with this if needed.

3. Structure in your organization

The key is to automate the structure, not the incidents or chaos. Make sure the organization and structure are well-established. This means the fundamental processes must be clear and streamlined before introducing automation.

4. Stick to the plan

The vision and policy have been translated into software/digitization needs with a specific goal, budget, and scope within a clear project plan. It is crucial to stick to this plan and not deviate at the first setback.

5. Employees

All employees within the organization are crucial to the success of the digitization. Therefore, it is important to make your employees part of the project. Involve them in the planning, listen to their feedback, and provide sufficient training and support.

6. Internal communication

Few things are as frustrating as a lack of communication about a project’s progress. Without updates, everyone creates their own narrative, leaving no one truly informed about the status, which can foster negative sentiment. Communicate frequently and clearly about the progress. Transparency in the process prevents misunderstandings and ensures broad support.

7. Don’t skimp on implementation and training

Every project plan, particularly at the outset, allocates time and money for testing and employee training. This is crucial. Skipping this phase can cause significant problems and additional costs in the long run. Therefore, when implementing the software, make sure to devote ample attention to training employees to use it correctly.

8. External eyes

Your project leader will need to dedicate a significant amount of time to the project. Meanwhile, the schedule at structural steel companies is often already packed. Ensure there is enough internal capacity and foster good collaboration with the software supplier. External consultants from ConstruSteel can also offer support if needed.

The role of ConstruSteel

ConstruSteel plays a crucial role in the digitization process for structural steel companies. Our optimization software not only automates production processes but also enhances information flows. With our expertise and customer-focused approach, we provide solutions tailored to the specific needs of our clients.

By adopting ConstruSteel’s software solutions, structural steel companies can operate with greater efficiency and effectiveness. Digitization brings benefits such as increased productivity, reduced error rates, and improved internal collaboration. This leads to a more streamlined production process. Additionally, the software enables companies to promptly respond to market changes, a critical advantage in the competitive construction sector.

Would you like to know more?

Digitization in structural steel construction is a complex but necessary process for companies that want to remain competitive and innovative. By following ConstruSteel’s structured approach and the eight steps for successful digitization, steel construction companies can transition to a more efficient and future-oriented way of working. It all starts with the “why” question and ends with a fully integrated system that forms the basis for further growth and development.

Would you like to know more about digitizing the workshop and transitioning to a “smart factory”? Please feel free to reach out to us.