Procore CEO and Founder, Tooey Courtemanche, recently visited customers and partners across Australia and New Zealand.
With the rapidly growing Sydney office and Procore APAC Headquarters now 45 people strong, Procore’s 150,000+ users across the APAC region are highlighting the significant need for reliable and user-friendly technology tools in the construction industry.
Jobsite caught up with Mr. Courtemanche during his recent trip to get his view on how the construction technology industry is evolving in Australia.
Mr. Courtemanche believes the construction industry has never been slow to adopt the latest technologies, though the technology industry has been slow to catch up to its needs.
“The Australian construction industry, much like the US, is in serious need of technologies made for and by their own professionals."
During his trip, and with Procore having established extensive customer support and services teams locally, he saw tremendous opportunities for Australian and New Zealand-based construction businesses to shift from paper-based processes to more digital ways of communicating, collaborating and storing information.
“The Australian construction industry, much like the US, is in serious need of technologies made for and by their own professionals. Procore was built this way, and our rapid growth in the region is a proof point of its effectiveness and ability to deliver fast results for our customers,” Mr. Courtemanche says.
Transparency is Key
Through conversations with local customers and observations of the various construction projects happening across the country, including the Sydney light rail ‘chaos’, Mr. Courtemanche noticed common challenges in the Australian construction industry that Procore is also seeing globally – budget blow-outs and schedule delays.
“The construction industry is one of the most inefficient. The main issues Procore is solving in the market now are the fundamental challenges of building sites and homes on budget, and on schedule. With greater transparency over the data and information being shared across projects, we can catch problems early on to avoid issues escalating throughout the project,” says Mr. Courtemanche.
“With the latest technologies, project managers can gain visibility of a project from end-to-end. "
Today, it’s still very common for on-site workers to be using old blueprints, leading to errors made on-site and excessive re-work to fix these errors. In the last year, these kinds of misuses of information have even led to poorly designed and even dangerous off-the-plan properties.
“With the latest technologies, project managers can gain visibility of a project from end-to-end. These days, on-site workers are getting real-time information from back-office staff and relaying photos and commentary from the site through their mobile or tablet devices. This is the level of information transparency and real-time collaboration needed across the industry to minimise re-work and optimise productivity,” explains Mr. Courtemanche.
It’s a Team Effort
Mr. Courtemanche believes deeply in partnering with the industry to ensure each player’s strengths are being leveraged effectively.
“By partnering, we can focus on what we’re best at, and leverage other organisations’ expertise as well.”
He also believes that as technology continues to advance, the skills required of the construction industry will become more complex. Supporting the industry and ensuring construction workers remain employed throughout these changes requires training for today’s professionals, and renewed curriculums for tertiary students soon to enter the workforce.
“We’re partnering with universities around the world, including in Australia, to enable the next generation of talent in this field to succeed. We are not going to solve the construction industry’s trillion-dollar productivity problem, but by partnering with professionals and institutions in an open and collaborative manner, reaching this goal together is achievable,” says Mr. Courtemanche.