The best engineering and architectural firms run into challenges that cause them to look outside their organizations to complete projects. With tight timelines and expanding project complexity, many firms seek to work with services organizations to accomplish project objectives.
The difficulty is that firms don’t know when they’ll run into those issues that often precipitate seeking outside help. No matter how smart and advanced your firm is, sometimes it’s easier to outsource to a specialist who can resolve the problem immediately. That’s better than taking the time and expense to learn how to solve the problem internally.
Even the most advanced engineers, designers, and manufacturers seek instant support in the following areas:
Enhancing Team Skill Sets: We know you’ve assembled the best team possible. We also know some projects are so large and complex they require a specialized set of skills to guide them through to completion. With the right outsourced solution, engineering and architectural firms, as well as manufacturers, can complete projects within days instead of weeks or months. The key is to focus on analyzing the challenge and to work with the right resource partner who will assist in creating the best possible outcome.
Leveraging the Right Software: One challenge we see our clients face is training engineers and designers on using software that may not be the best fit for the parameters of a project. This usually happens when firms focus on using software that’s worked for them on previous projects. But as projects expand in scope and complexity, they may need a different software solution. If team members don’t have capabilities in the necessary software, partner specialists can help quickly get them up to speed so they can leverage their skills in the most efficient way possible.
Shortening Timelines: Assessing the design process and identifying business priorities based on desired outcomes is a major component in successfully reducing timelines for engineering design projects. Many firms know that bringing an outside firm into the process helps companies step back and review the big picture. This allows for getting to the essence of the most necessary parts of a process and eliminating legacy activities that cause bottlenecks.
3 Best Practices in Team Management
To ensure that an outsourced solution integrates well with your internal team of engineers and designers, we suggest focusing on team leadership, identifying team strengths, and continuously documenting processes. Below, we explore how to integrate these best practices into your organization
Appoint an Internal Project Leader
The project manager sets the tone for the entire services engagement and without that person’s input, it’s difficult to get the results you’ll need. To facilitate working with the project manager, it’s best to appoint a counterpart (an internal project leader) within your department who will be that person’s main point of contact. This will help provide context, insight, and understanding of your internal processes.
Identify and Enhance Strengths of Individual Team Members
Some firms identify weaknesses of team members and then look to train them to improve in those areas. A better approach is to pinpoint and leverage team members’ strengths.
In the case of architectural, engineering, design, or manufacturing projects, you may have a team member skilled in CFD and identifying how temperature changes affect steel structures. Consider formalizing a document listing team members and the areas where they are most skilled. This way, when you do work with a skilled external resource, you can easily hand this document off to the external project manager or use the information in the document to quickly assign team members to assist in the outsourced project should the need arise.
Document and Update Project Processes
When working with an external resource, you will greatly benefit from their documentation of existing processes, thus saving you hours of work in the long run. This speeds up the research process as outsource partners work to pinpoint bottlenecks.
For instance, architectural firms looking to implement design automation would have a critical need for understanding which tasks are repetitive. Meticulously tracking time and project tasks helps to identify those repetitive areas and make a case for automating or consolidating them. No matter what software you use to track tasks and associated processes, be sure the team is fanatical about tracking what’s being done along every step of your projects.
The Hagerman Process
When you work with the Hagerman team of expert engineers and consultants, we’ll go through a proven process to make sure you’re optimizing the design workflow, achieving your business objectives, and fixing bottlenecks in workflows.
Our process is customized to meet the needs of each client and it typically consists of these essential steps:
Discuss: Our consultants will set up a call with the client stakeholders to kick off the project. Team members with key technical knowledge will be available to make sure we understand and address your unique challenges.
Review: We’ll analyze the problem, determine the best possible outcome, and recommend solutions.
Define: Our experienced project managers will define the project scope and create a project plan based on the recommended solution. We’ll then review the plan with your team to ensure that we’re addressing your specific concerns and issues.
Assist: We also assist client stakeholders in getting organizational buy-in for successful implementation of proposed changes.
Oversight: After the project plan is signed off, we’ll assign a dedicated project manager to oversee the production of the deliverables. You can get in touch with your project manager anytime to make sure your project is on track and your needs are addressed.
Train: We’ll assist you with staff training so you can get the most out of the solution.
Follow up: We also follow up post-delivery to ensure quality and client satisfaction.
Our process is designed to optimize results by helping you quickly and accurately deliver world-class results with your projects.
Hagerman offers a collection of solutions to the most common design challenges in simulation software, data management, design automation, and team training.
Request more info to see how we can assist you.