Innovative Digital Services for Wooden Buildings

As construction industry suffers from low productivity and is one of the least digitized industries, HEAL and its’ activities want to impulse a change by starting a multi-disciplinary and cross-industry movement which will at the same time promote wood industry as a fore-runner in new technologies and automation/digitalization. This project was one step in this journey.

During the project, HEAL team tested different digital (demo) tools in a real building project, Eco Pavilion, that was designed and built in Seefeld, during the beginning of the year 2019. The tested demo tools are part of the HEAL’s bigger “mission” to make designing and building of timber buildings easier, more efficient and at the same time improve the health of the buildings and their occupiers.

Key outcomes from the work done during the project are following:
- Good visibility of digital demos and HEAL story in industry events and media
- Impulse different stakeholders to collaborate in digitalization of the industry and more specifically to exchange information related to BIM standardization
- Bring sustainability aspects more visible in the construction industry and tech events
- Learn and experiment from service design and agile (scrum) development methods

Both the final digital demos as well as the HEAL bigger vision has been shared widely in different media channels and during different events, both in Finland and other European countries. Feedback has been very positive and many different stakeholders, including other material manufacturers, property developers, construction companies and others are joining in the development to make healthy living more affordable through better collaboration, transparency and finally improved efficiency.

There were many important learnings from this project. During the project we realized that the building value chain transformation is an enormous challenge and can only be done bit by bit. It is better to concentrate more on the design and build phase than try to cover the whole lifecycle. Instead of normal project management practices, digital tools are developed with agile methods which require totally new skills and resources. Especially the agile and intensive two weeks’ development sprints need a proper product owner who give the developers not only the tasks but also know how to prioritize tasks. Another learning is to have very clear use cases that are defined together with the potential users. It is very important to involve them to the discussions and planning from the beginning.

New ideas and projects were born during the project, some of which have been already kicked-off. BIM standardization for example is a topic that needs wide industry collaboration and HEAL has been working as a catalysator to bring different parties together, both from industry and technology side. New ideas of the use of AR/VR technology in our industry also came out, such as applying AR/VR for training of timber element installation especially for newcomers, or adding new “dimensions”, such as audio to VR to improve the user experience.

hanke luotu 04.11.2020