Constructor's Perspective

"I hope this guide and the supporting FAQs, glossary and online resource library, provided by the Offsite Management School, will help introduce you to DfMA thinking, enabling you to harness it at the earliest possible project stage."

Rob Francis SKANSA 

Rob Francis from Skanska gives a main contractor’s perspective on skills and DfMA

"The construction industry is reinventing itself, implementing significant changes in the way that projects are delivered. The government’s 2025 productivity challenges are a core driver of change. The industry has already made progress towards the adoption of Building Information Modelling (BIM) by harnessing new digital technologies. Collaborative joint venture approaches to project delivery are now commonplace as client, contractor (and their supply chain) and design team relationships are re-examined and improved in order to deliver innovation.

Contractors are working with enlightened designers to innovate in many different ways. Skanska, Laing O’Rourke, Carillion and Costain are working to adopt lean thinking and offsite manufacturing processes. At Skanska this is called ‘industrialisation’; Laing O’Rourke use the term harnessed for this publication: ‘design for manufacture and assembly’ (DfMA): Carillion have coined ‘offsite & MMC (modern methods of construction)’ and Costain use ‘factory thinking’.

Through the Offsite Management School we have agreed a common language, skill set and approach, which include ve key elements: standardised design, design for maintenance, logistics, offsite manufacture and onsite assembly. It is about having an industrialisation mindset.

The Offsite Management School is helping subcontractors and their supply chains to learn new skills, but the School now needs the support and innovative thinking of design professions to drive further, more radical changes with even greater efficiencies.

As well as delivering projects faster, lowering costs and improving quality, the use of DfMA techniques will also result in better operational and in-use outcomes. There is no downside. By consistently embedding DfMA into your Concept Design at Stage 2, you will be able to drive the productivity gains necessary to deliver the UK Government’s Construction 2025 strategy and be part of a new, safer, more sustainable construction industry."