Hall Of Fame For CEO

14 July 2011

Costain Chief Executive, Andrew Wyllie, has become an inaugural member of a UK Construction ‘Hall of Fame’ and the Company awarded ‘Best Use of Technology’ title at one of the industry’s most prestigious annual awards ceremonies.

This week's Construction News awards at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel formed the backdrop for the Company’s latest accolades.

The new initiative from the magazine, to acknowledge lifetime achievement or the impact an individual has made on their organisation in recent years, was a closely-guarded secret until announced at the event.

Wyllie, who has steered the Company to consistent success and a healthy order book since he took the top slot in 2005, was one of three senior industry personnel to receive the Leadership Commendation by the publication. Further industry members will be given the distinction in future years.  

Meanwhile, Planning and Project Controls Manager, Phil Budden, was on hand to pick up the technology prize for deployment of Oracle’s Primavera P6 planning and scheduling tool.

Earlier versions of the tool had been around for some 15 years, said Budden, “but what we’ve done in recent years is employ it as a central database that anyone on a project can access across the internet and see all the programmes for our projects in one place.

“That allows us to collaborate with project teams from anywhere, especially when you’ve got big joint ventures on major projects.”

Traditionally, software was installed locally on users’ PCs and it was left largely to individuals how they managed their programmes in terms of coding structure, calendar management, reporting/presentation and data security. This inevitably led to inconsistencies in the planning function.

The need to find a better way of managing the process became more urgent as Costain increasingly became involved in larger-scale projects with teams of planners and dispersed joint venture teams.

In 2007 it developed a new strategy to replace all its standalone planning systems with an ‘Enterprise deployment’ of Primavera P6 Project Portfolio Management, improving collaboration and consistency across project teams, said Budden.

An Enterprise deployment refers to all users connecting to a single, central application, rather than individuals using standalone versions.

”Recently, we’ve deployed a major upgrade to P6.7, with major improvements to stability and performance,” he added.

This also helped support best practice, which was jointly defined by key planners in the community, delivered by bespoke training, and then supported by the Enterprise system.

Budden said he was delighted by the acknowledgement of the system’s virtues by industry peers. “This provides real recognition for the way we have used technology to change the way we work. It’s brilliant to get a bit of visibility and recognition that what we’re doing makes a difference.” The award, he said, would give P6 real ‘street credibility’ with clients, partners and supply chain members.