Orange customises IoT for construction firm McConnell Dowell

  • July 20, 2020
  • Steve Rogerson

Orange Business Services is designing a customised, smart and scalable IoT system for Australian construction company McConnell Dowell.
This will enable construction sites to collect and report on real-time information, such as heavy machinery use and asset tracking, to enable smarter decision making for operational efficiency, time saving and cost reductions.
The construction industry faces significant business and technology problems. These include equipment and skilled labour shortages, increasingly short project schedules, and rising costs of infrastructure delivery. The IoT can let construction sites leverage real-time data feeds to tackle these issues head on.
“Infrastructure delivery costs are rising by 8% per annum,” said Rhys Craigie, alliance systems manager for McConnell Dowell. “Efficient project management directly impacts our business performance. We are focused on embedding technology in our processes and Orange Business Services proved to be an ideal innovation partner. We are now working jointly to develop solutions that can be used at various project locations for different use cases. Together, we are future-proofing our business through agile, scalable and smart solutions that streamline business insights.”
Co-innovation led Orange and McConnell Dowell to co-create use case applications from innovation and ideation to platform deployment. French mobile operator Orange created a flexible, scalable IoT platform to collect, report and visualise real-time information over a private IoT network, focusing on digitising manual and paper-centric processes and removing manual tasks from the construction site.
Prior to this smart approach, McConnell Dowell could only access reports that were manually collated from physically captured data, which was both time consuming and inconsistent.
With the IoT platform, McConnell Dowell can now access multiple devices and sensors collecting environmental data and measure asset use spread across construction sites to harvest data. This is then sent across a LoRa low-power wide-area network (LPWAN) to the company for analysis, correlating with other environmental data. Via real-time dashboards, it can collect telemetry data such as machine movements and track assets onsite allowing project teams to assess efficiency of machine use and report on individual asset use.
McConnell Dowell can also track material such as concrete panels from the manufacturer through transportation and installation. On site it can then identify each individual panel and take smart decisions, avoiding incorrect placement, rework and project delays. More use cases, business applications and construction site roll outs are planned across the business.
“We take pride in working with organisations who lead their industry in driving digital transformation and continuous innovation,” said Kevin Griffen, managing director for Orange Business Services in Australasia. “McConnell Dowell is revolutionising the way infrastructure construction projects have been managed over the decades. We look forward to co-innovating with them to drive robust IoT-enabled ecosystems for large-scale projects that touch millions of lives globally.”
Founded in 1961, McConnell Dowell has more than 3500 employees and professional engineering and construction teams in Australia, New Zealand and Asia,.
Orange Business Services is a network-native digital services company. It connects, protects and innovates for enterprises around the world to support sustainable business growth.