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Case Study

BW: Workplace Experts

BW: Workplace Experts More Than Doubles Construction Turnover

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About BW: Workplace Experts

‘Personable, honest, reliable, professional, innovative’. When BW plays word associations with their clients, these are the most frequent words they use to describe the team. BW is happy to accept them all, as they are all qualities they look for in the workplace experts they employ. Their aim is to complete their fit out and refurbishment projects Defect Free. It’s a bold challenge and one they are fully committed to achieving. They want to be at the forefront of making their clients’ journey simpler, more collaborative, and more reliable.

Faster Reporting
Instead of taking 5 hours to run a project report, now it takes 3 minutes or less.

Fueled Business Growth
BW grew from about 100 employees to over 250 and increased construction turnover from £80m to £180m.

Consolidated Data
BW replaced multiple systems with one integrated solution, ensuring easier access to important project information.

Challenge

BW used multiple systems like email, Excel, Word, Dropbox, and their server to manage projects. Not only did projects lack standardisation, but this also made it difficult to add and update information while on site. It was also a challenge to spot trends and risk areas early.

Solution

One Centralised System
BW consolidated project information into one easily accessible location.

Mobile-Friendly Tools
Teams could view, update, and share information from anywhere.

Powerful Reports
BW could easily spot issues and report project performance to the board.

"Procore gives us all the information in one platform, which helps me to reduce my time behind the desk and spend more time on site."

MARIA RUSSO
BW: Workplace Experts

The Results

Procore enabled BW to standardise processes, and with a rapidly growing team, this made it easy to continue hiring at the rate they needed. The tools were mobile-friendly and easy to use, ensuring adoption by both site and office staff; teams could add or update information from anywhere, and it was much faster than relying on manual processes. Plus, updates were synced in real time which meant that data was reliable, reducing the likelihood of rework. 

With more efficient processes, seamless communication, and faster turnaround times, BW was able to reach Defect Free completion—that is, handing over projects without any snags, achieving practical completion on time with complete project documentation. Not only did this support a core principle at the company, it also resulted in higher recommendation.

While Procore enabled employees to do their jobs more effectively, it also bolstered BW’s commitment to their clients by providing greater transparency. By achieving Defect Free and eliminating the headaches of manual processes, BW was able to focus on more important tasks such as enhancing the client experience. This helped ensure repeat business and gave them an edge in a competitive market, further contributing to their rapid growth.

Weighing Build vs. Buy

The Story

The Road to Defect Free

BW: Workplace Experts is known in the industry for delivering workplaces with precision and a little extra something—that unique personal touch that few fit out contractors are able to capture. It has become the hallmark of their brand’s distinct personality and a key factor in their rapid growth. But earning a reputation for excellence doesn’t happen by chance.

Customer Experience Director Rob Frank explains that in order to create a truly remarkable customer experience, ‘You first need to have the basics in place, which is what we call “Defect Free”’. 

This is the motto that lies at the heart of everything BW does: delivering Defect Free projects. This means completing projects on time without any snags. But, as Rob adds, ‘To be Defect Free on all projects is quite a bit of work, so you need something to help get you there’.

Before using Procore, BW used a combination of Excel spreadsheets, Word, email, and a separate system that tracked snagging. Documents were saved on the server, but it was hit or miss whether they could be accessed remotely. As a result, teams often saved drawings on personal computers or third-party solutions like Dropbox, Google Drive, and OneDrive.

This made standardising procedures nearly impossible. Teams managed projects according to their own preferences and workflows, and since none of the systems were very mobile-friendly, it was often a challenge adding or updating information on site. Consequently, office teams had trouble accurately collecting data and analysing what was happening on site. Plus, with information scattered across various systems, it was difficult to get a full picture of project performance.

After researching various solutions, BW liked that Procore’s comprehensive suite of tools offered a one-stop shop, complete with project management, quality, and safety tools. But what also set it apart was that it came recommended by highly-respected peers in the industry. 

‘One of the biggest factors in our decision to use Procore was due to our alliance with two other companies: SHAPE in Australia and HITT in the US. They’re our sister companies—we share ideas, staff, and innovation, and they’re both large Procore users’, says Rob. 

After partnering with Procore, BW experienced a smooth implementation with the help of a dedicated UK-based Customer Success Team. Rob notes, ‘We have a really good relationship with them. Procore came to our yearly conference and got to know our people and our systems. We do “site safaris” where we take people around our projects and Procore comes along—they’re very much part of the family’.

"All our standard forms, folders, and documents are stored on Procore. It brings us consistency in the delivery of our projects, which is what our clients want. Whichever project you go to, RFIs, documents, and snag lists are all consistent."

ROB FRANK
BW: Workplace Experts

Streamlined Software from Site to Office

What BW likes most about Procore is that it is a single solution for all construction management needs, helping standardise processes across teams and projects. ‘All our standard forms, folders, and documents are stored on Procore. It brings us consistency in the delivery of our projects, which is what our clients want. Whichever project you go to, RFIs, documents, and snag lists are all consistent’, says Rob.

With a rapidly growing team, this makes it easy to onboard new employees. Plus, Procore offers an entire suite of training videos, certifications, and access to support staff whenever they need it, enabling them to continue hiring employees at the rate they need without slowing down.

With Procore’s mobile functionality and user-friendly tools, teams are able to quickly adopt and use the software. Customer Experience Manager Maria Russo says, ‘Before Procore, it was more difficult to enter data. Now they can just take a photo while they’re working, or answer something from their phone while they’re on the train, or close an item while they’re working on site. All the information is gathered so quickly. It’s just much faster’.

Not only can teams use Procore on a phone or iPad from anywhere, but having digital records also eliminates the need for physical archives. That means they don’t need storage facilities or extra space for documents—instead, everything is accessible right in the palm of their hand.

Maria explains that the quality of the data is much better too. Since information is provided by on site teams and updated in real time, it is more reliable. Collaborators are working off the most up-to-date information, reducing the likelihood of rework.

Standardising Processes to Boost Business

A ‘People-First’ Mentality

From their initial growth that largely drove their decision to purchase Procore, BW has continued to grow significantly in the past three years since implementing the software: from about 100 employees to over 250, and £80 million construction turnover to £180 million. A key driver of this is due to their investment in their employees—a large part of which is providing them with the tools and technology that enables them to do their jobs effectively.

As Maria says, Procore has helped ‘PMs spend more time on site than behind their desks’. This leads to both efficient and happy employees—and ultimately a healthy business. 

But the other main reason for BW’s success is their unrivalled commitment to their clients. By attaining Defect Free, eliminating the headaches of manual processes, and streamlining workflows, BW is able to focus on more important tasks such as creating a truly memorable client experience.

Rob explains, ‘At BW, we take customer experience seriously. We try and learn from external industries like hospitality, hotels, airlines, and car manufacturers. We try to learn best practices and bring that into our team. The use of technology is key to the customer experience that we deliver’.

This gives clients the confidence that projects are being managed effectively. Rob explains, ‘If I’m in a meeting and a client asks me a question, I can call up the report within two minutes. That’s really powerful. That’s one of the most powerful things you can do’.

"We can be the best that we are, we can be the biggest disruptor, we can take the market by storm—but if we don't keep up with innovation, if we don't keep pushing the boundaries, we will fall by the wayside. Technology is no longer a nice-to-have. It's a necessity."

ROB FRANK
BW: Workplace Experts

‘Tech is No Longer a Nice-to-Have—It’s a Necessity’

Regardless of industry, a company’s longevity is often dependent on its ability (or lack thereof) to stay innovative— and construction is no exception. Rob relates this to the infamous rise and fall of Blockbuster. ‘They should be the biggest provider of online movies, yet Netflix are. So why aren’t they? Because they didn’t keep abreast of technology innovation,’ he pauses. ‘We can be the best that we are, we can be the biggest disruptor, we can take the market by storm—but if we don’t keep up with innovation, if we don’t keep pushing the boundaries, we will fall by the wayside. Technology is no longer a nice-to-have. It’s a necessity.’

One benefit of a leading construction management solution is that companies can stay innovative without any extra work on their part. Considering the speed at which technology moves, Rob says that’s precisely why it’s better to implement Procore—a long-term solution— rather than settling for a short-term fix.

‘So many companies try to build an in-house platform, but very soon it runs out of steam because they need to invest a huge amount in keeping up-to-speed with constantly changing technology. Instead, we can rely on Procore to do that for us’, he says.

With Procore, BW also has powerful insights, helping them make better data-driven decisions to drive business growth. With seamless third-party integrations like Power BI, they have detailed reports that allow them to spot risks and trends. For example, with the data tracked in Procore, BW determined that certain projects weren’t completed on time largely because of snagging, leading them to develop a snagging workshop.

Maria explains, ‘Now, when we deliver a workshop, we show the trends to the company and which trades have taken the longest to close their items. This has given us the insight we need to improve on the delivery of the project and achieve Defect Free’, she says.

Not only did the reporting tools help improve processes, but they were faster too. In fact, Maria says that before Procore, running a project report would take about five hours—now that process takes about three minutes or less.

‘Before, we had to take time to collect and run the report ourselves. Now it’s done already so I just read the results. It’s helped me be more efficient. It’s also helped improve how fast we can deliver information, so we can act quickly when something hasn’t gone as planned’, continues Maria. ‘Since using Procore, we have been able to better understand processes on site, determine how can we reduce snagging, and identify where we can improve. We’re more proactive’.

This has helped BW achieve more Defect Free completions, boosting client satisfaction and securing future business. ‘If you haven’t got something like Procore that you’re using to keep everything up to date, you’re not going to make it’, says Rob. ‘If you haven’t got that, you can’t start adding the little extras that clients look for—the small things that are memorable and help you get repeat business’.