Category: Managing Your Business

Fabrication Virtual Mini II – North Mechanical

Small and medium contractors have some advantages when it comes to both innovation and fabrication. Innovation is far easier to implement when there are fewer people to train on a new process. Fabrication can be highly productive in smaller spaces that require less overhead.

On Thursday, February 11, 2021, North Mechanical Contractors, headquartered in Indianapolis, Indiana shared some insights on how they drive an amazing amount of productivity through innovation. The presentation, led by North’s VDC and Technology Manager Trent Leinenbach and Tole Burnett, the company’s Manufacturing Manager, demonstrated the process, software and hardware that allow them to approach fabrication from a manufacturing mindset.

Their presentation largely featured a software integration with GTP Stratus that allowed them to connect their VDC and BIM department with the fabrication shop and the field. The software not only assists in their organization, process, purchasing and scheduling, it can be used to drive manufacturing equipment more efficiently. One of the many processes North shared in the video demonstration was how the software provides automated cut lists that can minimize waste by driving a Tigerstop to automate pipe lengths before cutting them automatically.

It also allows computer workstations at fabrication stations access to more information. This includes 3D models that can be rotated and zoomed with dimensions and hidden systems available to be seen.

Project-Specific Loss of Productivity Analysis Methodologies

There is no question the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has impacted the construction industry as a whole, including the mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) trades. The Mechanical Contractors Association of America (MCAA), National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA), and Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association (SMACNA) have aligned the MEP trades in a collaborative effort to bring to you and the construction industry this white paper. Find the Change Orders publication referenced in this white paper here.

Fabrication Virtual Mini – Modern Piping

When site restrictions were enforced this past March, many contractors turned towards their fabrication facilities to keep their projects on track. Fabrication not only allows for a controlled environment with greater safety and oversight, it also allows companies like Modern Piping in Cedar Rapids, Iowa to leverage their productivity gains at a higher rate and even work two shifts to keep their work on pace with their schedule. 

Due to the impacts of COVID-19, MCAA has decided to postpone their 2020 Fabrication Conference to 2021. In lieu of an in-person conference in 2020, the MCAA Fabrication Committee is working to provide MCAA members with a virtual sneak peek inside some of the most innovative fabrication facilities. 

Over the last ten years, Modern Piping has been pushing the leading edge of fabrication by applying lean manufacturing concepts, developing software that digitizes their process and automates not only their digital workflow, but also their actual production. This has resulted in a dramatic productivity gain seen throughout their entire construction process. 

Modern Piping’s Fabrication Shop ManagerJim Tedow is joined by MCAA’s Director of Innovative TechnologiesSean McGuire, and MSUITE’s CEOBritton Langdon, to discuss their processes, tools and techniques in fabrication. This interactive session includes videos from Modern Piping’s fabrication facilities and a discussion on manufacturing concepts utilized at Modern. Attendees will see how they have streamlined their processes from design to the field. 

The Business Value of BIM for Mechanical and HVAC Construction SmartMarket Report

The use of BIM and related technologies and processes that leverage data from models is delivering meaningful impact to mechanical and HVAC contractors on a wide variety of measures, including cost and schedule improvements, enhanced productivity, better collaboration between stakeholders and better worker safety. This research report quantifies other benefits to users and the challenges related to leveraging BIM to increase industry understanding of which factors will most effectively drive growth and expand future use.

Prefabrication and Modular Construction 2020 SmartMarket Report

Improved productivity and quality are among the benefits driving interest in, and use of, prefabrication and modular construction today. This research report quantifies other benefits to users and the challenges related to each to increase industry understanding of which factors will most effectively drive growth and expand future use.

Guide to Safety Incentive Programs

Encourage your employees to practice sound safety procedures by establishing an effective safety incentive program. This publication offers tips from those who have developed successful programs.

Inventory of Construction Industry Pension Plans

This ground-breaking analysis of historical trends in pension plans’ key operating data will aid stakeholders and public policy makers in ensuring plans’ futures with fact-based, in-depth analysis of plan experience over ten-year periods. Prepared by MCAA and Horizon Actuarial Services, LLC.

Related item: Answers to Frequently Asked Questions pertaining to the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) Standard 715-80 “Disclosure about an Employer’s Participation in a Multiemployer Plan” including a FASB Disclosure Table Excel Worksheet and Guidance Memo

Retention of Professional Staff

This bulletin outlines specific strategies that contractors can implement to increase their ability to retain employees as well as metrics that can be used to measure the effectiveness of these initiatives.

Credit Card Payments

This bulletin reviews the advantages and disadvantages of making payments via credit card.

Unit Pricing

This bulletin provides an overview of the “Unit Price” basis for pricing changes. It also highlights the pitfalls a contractor can expect in the implementation of a unit price change or contract.

Business and Politics

This bulletin provides advice, tools and information about the federal legislative process to help you be effective in presenting and discussing industry issues with your House and Senate representatives.