How Focus Development Uses Buildup for Better Communication in Construction Projects

The Project 

Focus Development, a premier developer, general contractor and consultant based in Chicago, is developing The Atworth at Mellody Farm, a 260-unit apartment building in Vernon Hills, IL.

The Challenge

One of its biggest construction problems was communication in construction, specifically communicating with the subcontractors, trades and consultants.  Focus was using paper, excel and printouts to communicate with the trades and subcontractors, specifically on the punch list process. With this method, there were a lot of things getting lost in the shuffle, as there was no central repository for issue resolution.

The Solution

Upon implementation of Buildup, Jake Dohm, Project Engineer of The Atworth Project talks about how his communication problems have improved significantly. Prior to Buildup implementation, Jake did not really have a clear picture of what his trades and subs were doing. With Buildup, he now has subs close out issues even before he gets back to the trailer.  According to Jake, the top 3 benefits he is getting from Buildup are:

  1. Speed of communication – as issues are put down, they are instantly communicated with the subs, complete with photos and any back and forth communication with subs.
  2. Tracking – exceptional tracking where you know exactly when the issue was logged, what happened and when it was resolved.
  3. Accountability – it’s nice to be able to have the record to follow up with someone. There are cases when it’s been 7 days and you can go back and ask your subs, see what has happened, and easily figure out issues that have not been resolved yet.

With Buildup, communication between team members is better, tracking has been easier and accountability has improved significantly.

“It helps with my sanity and the organization of everything. It makes everything so much simpler. I’m not wasting my time organizing the excel sheet or printing stuff. Buildup gives me more time to go around and do actual work instead of paperwork.”

Jake Dohm, Project Engineer

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