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For the redevelopment of Derby hospital, Skanska required a single document management system for the delivery and ongoing management of the building. Skanska found the perfect solution in BuildOnline’s On Demand software.

Skanska will be using BuildOnline to collaborate on the building, refurbishment and ongoing management phases of the Derby Hospital project.

In every redevelopment project it undertakes, Skanska is responsible for meeting, and ideally beating, the aggressive targets set for the delivery of each stage of the project. The risk if it fails to do so? High financial penalties and reputation loss. The companyÝs project team, therefore, must always work together to reduce delays and errors. When it won the contract to build, refurbish and manage Derby Hospital, as part of a 35 year PFI contract, collaboration was the buzzword of the team. How to collaborate better was the next question.

To meet the programmeÝs deadlines, Skanska, Derby Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and every partner in the supply-chain, needed to be able to effectively communicate with all parties. Common processes were required to manage version control of documents, requests for information, the approval process and the management of defects. An audit trail of all processes needed to be easily accessible so that all decisions were recorded and people were accountable for their actions. Skanska had to look at a long-term approach to working practices and partnership. One key decision factor when looking into partners and providers was how documentation and information used in the construction phases could be made easily and readily available to the construction team. Equally, the facilities management teams needed access to be able to properly manage the services across the whole life cycle of the PPP.

BuildOnline solution

After reviewing the market and various providers, Skanska selected BuildOnlineÝs On Demand Document Management and Collaboration software.

The solution provides the Derby Hospital project team with a powerful document management system and a means to manage all project processes including information requests (RFIs) and document approvals in one central location.

This is accessible to all members of the team regardless of their location or role in the project. Documents can be uploaded and downloaded, but in a controlled environment whereby version control ensures that users are always accessing the latest, and most importantly the correct, version. Action history relating to any document can be viewed, including who has downloaded/uploaded/viewed it, with a date stamp.

Previous versions can also be viewed if required. During the course of the project, the design and construction team benefit from such functionality, while the FM team can be sure all the right documents are stored in one central location, throughout the lifecycle of the project.

Skanska has a series of offices at the hospital site from where the day-to-day works are managed. The project team including subcontractors need hard paper copies of drawings to operate and use BuildOnlineÝs integrated ÙReprographicsÝ module. The software allows users to send requests to their nominated local reprographic house. The print houses access the documents in BuildOnline with a cover sheet detailing quantity, size, format, recipients and invoice details.


As BuildOnlineÝs technology is available on demand, Skanska has been able to Ùswitch onÝ extra product modules as and when the project dictates, ensuring that costs are kept low, but the technology is available quickly. The most recent functionality made available to the project team is the ÙDefects ManagementÝ module, which allows the site team to better manage the reporting of defects, which has traditionally been very labour-intensive. This means that Skanska can now effectively track progress and the subcontractor responsible for the fix can manage multiple requests electronically through BuildOnline. Equally, project managers can review who is behind schedule and which jobs are outstanding.

Skanska had experience of BuildOnlineÝs software throughout the supply-chain so they were confident that adoption would be rapid and successful. To assist, BuildOnlineÝs implementation team worked closely with Skanska to produce a training programme, online user guides and training manuals for all users. The softwareÝs ease of use and the support available has ensured that adoption of the software has been high across the project team.

ýAt Skanska, we are not only responsible for construction work but also the hard facilities management contract to manage the buildings and their operations for the next 35 years,¯ explained Martin Quaid, Project Director, Skanska. ýThe use of a single document management system is vital for the delivery and ongoing management of the hospital. BuildOnlineÝs On Demand software has the functionality to manage our wide remit, whilst its ease of use ensures that our supply-chain can swiftly embrace the software.¯

Business benefits

Almost 40 companies and 250 users are managing 14,000 documents using the BuildOnline solution for the Derby Hospital. The project team uses both the document management system and the workflow processes available to ensure that all areas of the project are on track.

BuildOnlineÝs software has enabled the project team to work together more effectively, meaning that time savings are being seen at every stage in the process. Combining all these gains has also lead to significant cost savings for the project.

One such area was the management of documents. On a similar size project where Skanska was not using BuildOnlineÝs On Demand software, the project was employing 10 document controllers. In stark contrast, the Derby Hospital project needed only two document controllers, managing the documents and data using BuildOnline and resulting in an 80% saving for the project.

Plans for the future

Skanska will continue working with BuildOnline for the lifetime of the project – liaising and working closely together to ensure that the new functions of the technology are used where appropriate and that the project team continues to make the most of the technology in their day-to-day jobs.

ýSkanska recognised the need for a system that would enable us to manage information and collaborate with our supply chain and interested parties. We selected BuildOnline because of its easy to use product and exceptional levels of service,¯ concluded Quaid.



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