Magued Eldaief, CEO
Builders in the construction industry are frustrated with the way construction workflows are executed and by the lack of oversite in the development process. The founders of Prescient were appalled by the fragmented approach within the industry and how the players had to reinvent the wheel every time they designed and built a new structure. As a result, they asked themselves, “is there a better and less expensive way to do this by leveraging technology and digitization?” For example, if cars were built today the way houses are built, people couldn’t afford a car! That is what Prescient is all about: adopting technology and standardization used successfully in other industries to change construction. Here are some of the views of the company’s CEO, Magued Eldaief to better highlight how Prescient is disrupting the construction industry with technology.
Chief Objectives and Specific Outcomes to Be Achieved in the Pursuit of Addressing this Lack of Efficiency
1. Speed in terms of how we execute
2. Cost, through more efficiency realized by technology
Optimizing speed and cost throughout the entire supply chain and process helps derive more predictable outcomes on a more reliable schedule and also reduces risk during construction.
When we pursue a project, we start thinking about constructability and cost from day one, and we leverage our software and hardware technology platform to immediately, in a matter of days, assess whether a project is viable from a cost and design perspective. The speed and efficiency with which we can achieve that first step is, in many ways, revolutionizing the industry, resulting in answers that most other players in the industry take up to a year to conclude.
We are also working toward eliminating waste. All the inefficiencies around the construction site with material that is not being used leads to more resources being wasted in execution.
On How Prescient Figures out its Strategy
Our software platform allows users to build a digital model of what is going to be built. Prescient’s digital platform enables us to quickly put a building design together based on a standardized set of components— using light gauge steel. That same software resolves the structure for that design once it is optimized in terms of layout, number of units, square footage, etc… to determine all the required structural components. The resulting 3D model not only shows where each component is located in the building but also provides an accurate cost of the entire structure that enables the owner to make a quick assessment of the economics of that design in relation to his project proforma. Once the design is finalized, our software automatically generates a BOM (bill of material) for each component and the required manufacturing set of instructions that enables our factories to produce the parts. This digital thread continues to run throughout the entire process, including each building component having a QR code that determines the exact placement coordinates in the building all the way to the lean methodology for delivery logistics and final assembly at the job site.
In a nutshell, Prescient covers everything from the beginning of the design all the way through installation by creating a virtual model, which is an exact replica of the structure. Therefore, this digital thread enables users to drive speed and efficiency in design, manufacturing, logistics and assembly to produce a predictable outcome in cost and execution with less waste and lower costs than traditional building methods.
We are the first OEM vendor for the building industry. Analogous to the auto industry, we provide the physical chassis, enabled by the software platform to be able to—in a very accurate way—model and attach everything that goes into a building to drive schedule compression and overall reduce costs.
We have done several student housing projects successfully, and one of them was at the University of Southern Florida in Tampa. The project duration from when we put a shovel in the ground to when students moved in was only ten and a half months vs a typical 18-24 months duration. We have customers who come to us, even before they hire an architect or contractor, where they ask us to optimize the design using our technology platform, and once done, request that we pick the architect and GC as well the other trades that are needed to execute that project. This is a completely different approach to how the current industry operates, so we are changing the way people are designing, planning and ultimately, building projects.
Track to the Future
In terms of technology, there is yet another transition that we are witnessing right now: a lot of the construction that happens in the U.S., especially for up to five-story buildings, is with wood. This increases the chances of fire-related accidents that may occur during construction, and insurance premiums for wood-based construction are generally four to five times higher than metal systems such as Prescient’s. This shift in building materials to drive non-combustibility together with higher quality and digitization is changing how stakeholders collaborate and achieve faster and better outcomes and it is the revolution that Prescient is driving in our industry.