Full End-to-end Process Management

Case Study

Using RIB CSuite process and cost management software, controller Erika Masekowitz maps the process end-to-end – from cost estimating to project completion.
The logistic requirements in particular are always extremely high for these projects
“After all, IKEA projects are much more than ‘blue boxes’,”: branch and project manager Thomas Keßler.

The Frankfurt branch of PORR Deutschland GmbH is building Germany’s biggest IKEA store

Building involves change - and change involves responsibility – this is the motto of the Allgemeine Baugesellschaft  A. PORR AG headquartered in Vienna. The international building corporation is one of the oldest and largest construction groups in Europe. Based in Munich, PORR Deutschland GmbH supports, together with other branches in Germany, the successful handling of construction projects all over Germany. For example, the Frankfurt branch, which was founded in 2007, specialises in turnkey projects such as industrial buildings or office blocks besides its housing and engineering business. Under the management of Thomas Keßler, a team of currently 25 staff in Frankfurt am Main concentrates on successful project management  – from engineering through construction all the way to building maintenance, offering both private and public clients a full service in line with the Group’s corporate philosophy.

Much more than “blue boxes”

One of the current projects of the Frankfurt branch is the carcassing work for the extension of Germany’s largest IKEA store to date, the one in Cologne at the Butzweiler Hof. The dimensions are gigantic: With a gross floor area of 41,500 square metres, the building is to have a height of 12.30 m to 18.50 m, accommodating a total sales area of approximately 20,000 square metres. Spreading over two floors with a gross cubic capacity of 270,000 cubic metres, the store will be completed by an open-sided park deck underneath providing 2,000 spaces. The building is situated in earthquake zone 1 and suitable construction measures have been implemented to make it earthquake-safe including reinforcements, soil improvement and a cast-in-place concrete tieback around the building at foundation level. The company was contracted to build this highly challenging project in April, 2008. “After all, IKEA projects are much more than ‘blue boxes’,” says branch and project manager Thomas Keßler. He ought to know, as it is meanwhile the eleventh IKEA store project that Keßler has realised with the PORR team. Only last year, the IKEA store in Oldenburg was successfully completed by the PORR branch in Frankfurt am Main.

“The logistic requirements in particular are always extremely high for these projects,” he continues. “IKEA buildings demand highly complex technical handling”. On top of this, IKEA chooses various subcontractors for the interior finishing, installations and outdoor facilities itself. Altogether, there are about 50 different companies working on the large building site in Cologne. There has to be efficient coordination and communication for the whole duration of the project. Otherwise it is practically impossible to keep to the tight deadline, as IKEA has scheduled the opening of the store for March 2009 already. This means that the building has to be ready for moving in by the end of January.

Focus on project processes

The prefabricated building with trapezoidal façades and roof was designed by the architectural firm nps tchoban voss GbR from Hamburg. Tendering and site management are the responsibility of INROS LACKNER AG headquartered in Rostock. The construction engineering company Nord-Oldenburg GmbH & Co. KG is in charge of the extensive structural engineering work, such as that of the underground technical control room as a cast-in-place waterproof concrete basement. Another project partner, the engineering group Skribbe-Jansen GmbH, was commissioned with the outdoor facilities. “For complex projects like these, management, or rather controlling tasks, are particularly important,” reports branch manager Keßler. “By controlling, however, we primarily mean comprehensive process control rather than supervision.” Specialist Erika Masekowitz keeps an overview of the entire project process, not only at PORR itself, but also in cooperation with all the subcontractors working on the project. Using RIB CSuite process and cost management software, controller Masekowitz maps the process end-to-end – from cost estimating to project completion. “For large-scale projects such as these, monthly comparisons of budgeted and actual costs are most important,” she explains. “We then notice risks involving quantities and changes immediately and are always able to react swiftly and take appropriate action to prevent things going wrong.” In this way, the company ensures a safe budget- and time frame for the project. Due to the end-to-end process management free of media breaks, Erika Masekowitz is even able to relieve the site manager on the construction site of administrative jobs so that he can concentrate on major issues, too. The end-to-end process design at PORR even provides for linking of the RIB software to the company’s supply chain management system to enable all the costs entered in the books to be directly transferred there. The Frankfurt branch has also dovetailed RIB’s Business Partner Management software to the process management system for a direct link to order processing.

“Without our defined processes with appropriate software support we would find it difficult to realise a complex project like the IKEA store in Cologne in such a short time slot,” comments branch manager Keßler. “For instance, subcontracting has to be done almost immediately after the investor gives us the go-ahead. After all, we ultimately want to deliver the outstanding quality that our company is known for. And working with such dimensions, this is only possible with an end-to-end process design and the involvement of our subcontracted partners.”

Industries>Architecture, Engineering & Construction>Contractors>Porr Deutschland GmbH

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