10 Optimization strategies in Structural Engineering projects to scale up the margin to next level.

  1. Material Optimization
    Profitability of the project is exponentially proportional to efficacy of how you deal with materials. Give more weightage to materials at design stage. Optimize the material size not only for design safely but also to maximize the nesting efficiency to better utilize the materials and also keep the manufacturing easiness, transportation limitations and erection constrains in mind.
  2. Engineering Aspect
    Build up a strategy that gives equal importance to engineering aspect and management aspect. For example, transportation engineering is bit differ from transportation management. Explore if there is any possibility of doing any engineering innovations at each stage instead managing what is there already.
  3. Centralized Database
    If you have independent excel sheets in each system, it leads to data redundancy and duplication. Even if you don’t have centralized Building Information System, at-least make sure you use online spread sheet or database that has all the information at one place.
  4. Power of API
    If you have multiple software applications in your company, verify that if they have API support. API allows two applications to talk to each other. For example, if you are using STAAD Pro for design but not using API, then we can say that you are utilizing only 10% potential of STAAD Pro. The screen that you use for manually doing the task are as like tip of the iceberg. By using APIs, you can unleash the 90% hidden potential beneath the surface. To make use of APIs, it needs some programming skill set. But it is easy if you try and there are lot of on-line tutorials available.
  5. Utilize the best
    If you have some in-house development team to do some programming then make sure that you are not spending time on creating your own toy version of a market established application. For example, you have AutoCAD already, write new API code to best utilize it instead creating miniature version of AutoCAD.
  6. Transform your problems
    List out the problems that you face in the project and try to convert that into data problem or mathematical problem. For example, if you think you have higher material wastage then there can be a mathematical solution to that problem. If a person fills same details in different formats to fulfil the requirement at different managerial level, then it is a data problem. Use Excel VBA or Python or any programming language to do that reporting task instead doing it manually each time.
  7. Open to listen
    Talk to each stockholder and find whether there is any repetition or duplication of work at any stage of the project. And then make an action item based on that.
  8. Machine Learning
    Project cost estimation at tendering stage is the most decisive moment for any construction company. To take wise decisions and efficient estimations, think of utilizing Machine Learning models. Scikit-learn is the most useful library for machine learning in Python that can help you to make better estimation by taking your historical data as input.
  9. Solver tool
    When it comes to optimization, we often deal with maxima or minima problem. For example, we always wanted to maximize the profit, minimize the wastage. We also deal with constrains like limitations in terms of resources and time. There is Solver tool add-in program in Microsoft Excel that can help you to find the best solution from all feasible solutions.

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Engineer | Software Developer | Math and Machine Learning Enthusiast

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Sivadharan K

Sivadharan K

Engineer | Software Developer | Math and Machine Learning Enthusiast

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