The following article is a summary of the key notes spoken about in Built Intelligence's most recent Quarterly Product Roadmap Webinar.
This article contains the following topics:
- Academy Recap
- We've Listened
- Academy Tips
- What's under construction
- Achieve Contract Management Excellence
- FastDraft Recap
- FastDraft Last Quarter Notes - All Users
- FastDraft Last Quarter Notes - Admin Users Only
- FastDraft Roadmap
- PowerBI Analytics
- Watch this Space
- Video Recording
This section will look at what we have been working on in Academy recently. We release updates on Academy on a 4 week cycle which you can find here.
Some new Academy features that have taken place recently include:
We have recently launched new e-Learning:
- Five Lean Techniques to Optimise Your Project or Programme
- Cost and Carbon Intelligence for Sustainable Infrastructure Projects
We recently aired the following webinars:
- Apprenticeships in Surveying - This presentation, delivered by Stuart Earl and Cara Thompson, covers the apprenticeship route to surveying qualifications.
- FastDraft Masterclass: Compensation Events - This presentation, delivered by Steven Evans and Chris Corr, covers compensation event notifications and how to get the most out of FastDraft when managing compensation events.
These webinars can be found in Webinars on Demand for those with a premium Academy subscription; alternatively, you can register for the next viewing at the links below:
- Apprenticeships in Surveying - 29/11/2023, 12:00pm
- FastDraft Masterclass: Compensation Events - 14/12/2023, 09:00am
We are an Approved Training Organisation with the CITB, which means our e-Learning qualifies for CITB grants. If your organisation pays a CITB levy, you can earn while you learn. You can make the cost of your license cost-mutual, so if budgets are tight, you can get your money back through CITB grant to cover your training costs.
Some new Academy features that have taken place recently include:
- Mobile App and Offline Learning - all Academy features can now be accessed via our mobile app, perfect for teams who travel or work offsite, as well as those with limited internet access.
- Journeys Available in Mobile App -
We're aware the construction industry is ever-changing and ever-evolving, and your skills need to remain relevant. It's paramount that you are upskilled, so we've listened to our clients and we are now offering an Accelerated Programme as a new way of learning.
The Accelerated Programme offers a hybrid way of learning, which we can customise to suit you. It's not only working your way through the e-Learning, but it will be interspersed with workshops delivered by industry experts and trainers - for example, Barry Trebes who was part of the drafting team for the NEC.
Why choose the Accelerated Programme? :
- Ability to upskill your team quickly, with a scheduled time frame to complete learning.
- Helping staff with their learning can help them feel valued, which in turn improves retention.
- Ideal for business teams, or project teams, who may want to upskill their team at an accelerated rate. Perhaps you have a new project starting soon, in which case we can customise the programme to your specific needs.
If you are interested in learning more about our Accelerated Programme, please get in touch by emailing email@example.com and a member of our team will be able to assist you.
Tags and Filters can be used in Bridge to make searching for learning easier. Users can browse through potential courses or programmes that suit their needs best without needing to know the course titles.
At the top of the home page, select Learner Library. Select Tags.
You can review all the tags alphabetically, or you have the option to use the search bar.
In the search bar, type in the key word(s) to describe what kind of learning you want to undertake (e.g. 'Beginner', if you are a beginner).
The tag will now appear in blue on the Learning Library page; you can remove any tags by clicking X.
Your Learner Library will now display all learning that is tagged with your chosen tag; you can now browse through and pick the most suitable courses.
At the top of the home page, select Learner Library. Select Filter by.
Look through the list and choose from the filter options (e.g. 'Course' if you want to view all courses).
The filter will now appear on the Learning Library page as in the image below; you can remove any filters by clicking X.
Your Learner Library will now display all learning that corresponds with your chosen filter; you can now browse through and pick the most suitable courses.
What's under construction
- New features due for release
- Journeys Analytics Reporting Enhancements
- New e-Learning courses:
- NEC4 Facilities Management Contract
- FIDIC Red Book Fundamentals
- FIDIC Silver Book Fundamentals
- Upcoming Webinars:
- The Law of Construction Adjudication - part 1 of a six-part series by William Brown.
- A "Typical" Adjudication - part 2 of a six-part series by William Brown.
- Assessing your Organisation's Contract Management Maturity - this webinar is being delivered by Chris Corr, Director of Built Intelligence, and Steven Evans.
Achieve Contract Management Excellence
At BI we are passionate about improving project outcomes for all stakeholders in the construction industry.
Our latest whitepaper, the Contract Management Maturity Model, gives senior leaders responsible for contract management performance the tools to assess and improve their organisation's contract management maturity.
Download your blueprint today and discover;
- The 3 key questions leaders must answer
- The business value of contract management
- Elevating contract management: the Maturity Model
- Contract management self-assessment
This section will look at what we have been working on in FastDraft recently. We release updates on FastDraft on a 2-4 week Sprint Cycle which you can find here.
FastDraft Last Quarter Notes - All Users
FastDraft now supports the following new contract forms as part of our family of contracts:
- New Contract Templates
- FIDIC Silver Book 2017
- NEC4 ECSC
- New Workflows
- X27 Project Orders (NEC4 FMC)
- ProCure23 Framework
- Preconfigured NEC proformas and PowerBI reporting updated for P23 - 4th Generation route to market for NHS construction workers, capital works projects
Improved Payment Applications/Certificates
We have added optional 'Type' dropdowns that can be enabled within the Payment Workflow for Payment Certificates, Payment Applications and their associated registers and reports.
Improved Demo Contract Functionality
We have created party switching for all users on demo contracts irrespective of user type. This means you can raise notifications as one party, switch roles and reply as the relevant party. (NB. Demo contracts do not create email notifications)
Improved Attachments Functionality
It is now possible to toggle FastDraft's attachment capability on or off per workflow.
New Automated Relations functionality
There are several notifications in FastDraft where you can select an association to another communicated notification via dropdowns. For example, on a compensation event form you could add associated Project Manager Instructions and/or Early Warnings, however, they were not automatically linked. We have now made an improvement to automatically relate them. This means they are visible in the Relation columns on the workflow registers, and included in the relations count on the notification.
Improved Related Notifications
We have an existing feature that allows the creation of a related notice via a button at the top of an existing notice. Where enabled, this was previously only available on notices that had already been communicated. We have now introduced the capability to create a related notice on a draft notification. This may prove useful for example, to request an internal clarification or to seek internal (or provide internal) approval prior to sending the original communication.
New configurable placeholders
Quote reply options
Currently reply options are available to configure when replying to a quote in the PM Proposed Instructions workflow via the InstructionReplyOpts placeholder.
Until now this has not been available for other workflows that have a quote (i.e. PM Compensation Event, Supplier Compensation Event, Supplier Claims with Quote, Supplier Claims with Notice). A full list of valid statuses for a Quote in the Compensation Events group are available - although not all are valid when sending a quote reply, depending on the contract type.
We have now made it possible to configure a placeholder separately for each workflow that determines which statuses can be set for the quote so that on a single contract you can configure, for example, that a PM Proposed Instruction quote can't be replied with status 3, a PM CEN quote can't be replied to with status 5, a Supplier Claim with Notice quote can't be replied to with status 0 so that you can be sure of complying with the precise terms of the contract. (To view the statuses for quotes on FastDraft - look at the placeholder Quotestatuses)
This is particularly urgently required for NEC4 ECSC 2019 which uses the Claims with Quote [CWQ] variant.
The below new placeholders for Compensation Events make this possible.
- PMCENReplyOpts - Replying to a quote for a PM CE
- SupplierCENReplyOpts - Replying to a quote for a Supplier CE
- SupplierCWQReplyOpts - Replying to a quote for a Supplier claim
- SupplierCWNReplyOpts - Replying to a quote for a Supplier CE/Claims With Notice
- SupplierShortCENReplyOpts - Replying to a quote for a Supplier CE ECSC
Custom CE periods of reply
It is now possible to customise quote/requote duration and notification/quote/requote reply periods within the Compensation Event workflow group based on the individual clause selected at the notification stage. This should be as an override by exception (i.e. if a custom config hasn't been stipulated for a particular drop down value then the setting from Global Resources should apply (or the system default for that Resource key if a contract setting cannot be found)). Where a custom period has been defined the custom value should be used in place of the contract level resource when calculating reply required dates and/or quote required dates (as appropriate). In case of resources that apply to a Quote, it will be necessary to retrieve the Type from the associated CEN record or to store that in the Quote record.
FastDraft Last Quarter Notes - Admin Users Only
New Idle Detection
For security reasons one of our customers required its users to be automatically logged out of FastDraft if the user did not interact with FastDraft for a certain amount of time. The Idle Warning Time can be configured for a number of minutes, after which a warning message will be displayed to the user if they have failed to make a detectable interaction with FastDraft. For the avoidance of doubt, detectable interacton means either hitting a button or navigating between pages/tabs but, for performance reasons, not individual keystrokes in a text box.
- If a user's idle time is greater than the configured Idle Warning Time there will play a warning sound* and a warning message will be displayed counting down in seconds the time until automatic logout.
- If a user's idle time is greater than the configured Maximum Idle Time the user will be automatically logged out.
*Sound may not be played if it is blocked by the browser/user. If you feel you may have a use for this in the future - please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
New Contract Dashboard functionality
The Contract users list on the contract dashboard can be configured to show all contract users, rather than the leads has been updated to also include the configured party names.
This can be configured by selecting the users to add to the dashboard,
and selecting the relevant button - to either add or remove
We are always looking to improve our software - at any given time we have around 300 items on our Product Roadmap, and these often come from client feedback. Below are some of the highlights of what's currently on our Roadmap for development.
Exporting Contracts (expanded to site admins)
This is a longstanding feature that is in its final stages of testing. System Administrators will have the capability to click on a button to generate an export, giving you a package of PDF copies of every single notice, and an Excel extract of every register. It will run overnight and provide the opportunity to download it all as a Zip file. This facilitates you keeping a copy of your data at the end of a contract.
Share Button with link or with PDF copy of the notice via your own email app (enterprise only)
If you want to share copies of notices externally, to users who don't have access to FastDraft, you can currently do so via your browser functionality of 'printing' a PDF. To streamline this we are looking at various different ways that we can facilitate sharing information from FastDraft. This will include sharing a PDF copy, sharing via your own email, and potentially automating how we share PDFs - for example, so you could automatically save them to your own Document Management System.
Enhanced action reminders
All workflows where it is relevant to have a reply will have a reply timescale, but there are several additional scenarios where you've got scheduled tasks which we are looking to support better so that they will also appear in your action reminders. This includes:
- Scheduled Tasks - Payment Applications/Certificates/Programme Submissions, etc.
- Actions arising from instructions
- Manually assigned actions
- Support mutual agreement to extend deadlines (currently on supported for CEs)
Making it easier to apply bulk config changes to multiple contracts
Currently contracts are created based on a template, and are then customised on a contract level. This new feature will enable you to link directly to the Master Template, helping you take advantage of new features. For example, we recently launched a new Certificates workflow - this new feature will allow you to add this workflow to the master template and then automatically see it applied to all contracts based on the Master Template.
Some additional Roadmap Features include...
- Cloning a Contract (settings/users etc)
- Saving Custom Registers
- Enhanced FIDIC added support i.e. Interim quotes/Employer claims
- Attachments register
- Attachments flag against each notification in the register
We are now in a position to be able to start launching our embedded PowerBI Reports. Within PowerBI there is a wealth of charts and statistics available to help you manage your contracts. This will be particularly useful to people who have multiple contracts - for example, if they are grouped by regions this will enable you to view the performance across those contracts and benchmark them against each other.
You can filter this information however you like, and it is tailored to your individual permissions so you'll only see the contracts that you're entitled to see. It dynamically changes for each user on that basis, but you can filter it down to see a group of contracts, or an individual contract.
For end users who may be more interested in seeing a consolidated register of all communications, or a list of all their outstanding actions across all contracts, we've got this available also in embedded PowerBI.
If you'd like to learn more about PowerBI Reports and how they may be useful to you or your company, reach out to us by emailing email@example.com or get in touch with your Account Manager.
Watch this Space
We are going to be hosting two regional conferences next year in Bristol and Manchester. More information on these dates will be communicated as soon as possible.