Morten Malle - Director Agricultural Production, Gråkjær
In the Norwegian mountain area, with trees as far as the eye reaches, the Danish main and total contractor Gråkjær is building the year's biggest agricultural building. The area is carefully selected by professional building and breeding company Norsvin, far afield from civilization and humans, which reduces disease transmission. The position also poses some challenges to the building of a farming center far from everything and in a harsh climate.
Most construction and project managers would without a doubt consider the 4500 km2 as a large project with an even greater land area as construction site, with envy and with thoughts of satisfactory conditions for construction site coordination. Although space restrictions are on the plus side, it is necessary to operate within a strict schedule, where the biggest challenge is winter, which is approaching with a fast pace. With winter comes also the prospect of guaranteed snowfall and more than 1 meter of snow.
Intelligent project management of tough schedule
"One of the cornerstones of Gråkjær’s package is time." says the director for agricultural production Morten Malle. "We build following the same building legislation as others but we have some projects in the back catalog and a story that makes customers choose us. We have proven that we can do the impossible. "
Breeding company Norsvin selected Gråkjær, since they needed to have the facility built 2-3 months faster than what would normally be possible. The two companies have been working together before, and Norsvin knows Gråkjær's more than 15 years of experience in construction projects in the area.
Schedule extensions are not an option because piglets have already been ordered and promised to be delivered in May 2017, when the project is completed. The first milestone is to shut the house in late November. "The main challenges for us is time, and then of course winter, as we should have closed the house before the snow falls.
Time is a challenge for us because we have a strict schedule and daily changes occur.
Ongoing process of converting something dead into something dynamic
”The project management tool GenieBelt is the right tool for us due to several reasons. First of all, we need a simple way to disseminate and communicate progress and pictures from the construction site, which is indispensable for distance management. Second, it is necessary for us to actively involve all parties, from the builder to consultants and contractors in the time planning to be able to realize the project.
Third, the tool must be simple and easy to use, so everyone can participate. GenieBelt meets all the three requirements fully."
User-friendliness is a big part of what makes GenieBelt interesting, says Morten Malle. It is so easy to use that everyone can join in, which leads to subcontractors and other project participants embracing the system themselves. With frequent updates from the construction site, in form of state updates and attached pictures, one gets a complete picture of the progress of the project, the challenges that should be addressed, and thus an opportunity for informative decision-making in management meetings.
"In the past we had a sea of dead documents to be manually updated in several places. This might speak for itself, as that is the starting point of where errors and misunderstandings occur. In relation to time management, logistics and coordination, it is GenieBelt that shows our builders what we have planned and what is actually happening out on the building site. GenieBelt takes our dead documents and makes them 100% dynamic." adds Morten Malle.
Gråkjær in numbers
years of experience
Communication across departments moved into one platform
Gråkjær Agriculture has approximately 30 cases in Denmark and well the same number in Norway. In addition there are export cases in Romania, Lithuania and several other countries. In addition to Agriculture, Gråkjær A/S has 3 additional departments: Commercial, Aquaculture and Environment. Currently, project management and communication are being tested via GenieBelt in the construction phase, but there is a desire to add also the design phase and the sales phase, so that the entire organization's communication and overview would be dynamic, accessible and structured and in the same place. "We spent some time to reach the right level of detail between administration, time and yield. By using GenieBelt, we ended up making planning a little more detailed than we would normally do, but when it comes to the yield, no mistakes are to be made. We've hit the mark now, and can easily scale the system over the rest of our projects in agriculture and commerce." says Morten Malle, and continues:
"The goal for us is to have a dynamic overview of our entire portfolio including all phases of the project. Gråkjær belongs to some of the best in its league, as we as principal or turnkey contractor can steer our projects safely into port, and GenieBelt is a strategic tool that enhances our competencies and fits our vision."
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