Using a step-change to share information: a case study

Greatly improved internal business intelligence and document sharing capabilities through a unique combination of Microsoft SharePoint and Business Intelligence functionality.

Fulton Hogan create an information sharing step-change, greatly improving internal business intelligence and document sharing capabilities through a unique combination of Microsoft SharePoint and Business Intelligence functionality.

The situation

Fulton Hogan is a New Zealand leader in roading asset management. The company’s biggest client, the New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA), wanted information to be shared more effectively among its contractors, who included not only Fulton Hogan, but JV partners and subcontractors.

For Fulton Hogan, this was an opportunity to not simply improve its systems, but to introduce a step change. The key, says their road maintenance Information and Systems Manager, Graeme Macklin, was SharePoint.

“Not only are Intergen experts in this space, we also saw SharePoint as the ideal tool for creating a contract workspace where a single template could be spun off into hundreds of different workspaces,” says Graeme. 

“Each workspace could then report back to a central database, and that would mean we could better benchmark and monitor our work across the whole enterprise.”

We’d done some work with Intergen in the past and we recognised that SharePoint was right in their sweet spot. They’re the experts in this space…

Graeme Mackin
Information & Systems Manager, Fulton Hogan

The pain

Fulton Hogan is a large company with 50 contract areas in New Zealand alone (the company also operates in Australia). Each area can bid on, and sign contracts for, projects within its geographical region. Those bids and contracts, amounting to hundreds and sometimes thousands of operational documents, spreadsheets and photos are then held in a central repository, where they can be viewed by relevant stakeholders.

The challenge until this point had been finding a way to have contract workplaces be flexible enough to accommodate everyone, but also with enough standardisation to allow the central database/repository to work effectively.

That was a big challenge. “We really wanted to find a user friendly solution that fitted the way our people actually work, rather than the other way round,” he says. “It also had to satisfy NZTA’s new specific contract requirements.”

The technology

Notable features of the solution include:

SharePoint 2013: The new contract workspace lives within Fulton Hogan’s internal hosting centre. Fulton Hogan has a massive infrastructure and security was sacrosanct. Hosting SharePoint internally meant no new infrastructure was needed and also minimised security risks.

Adaptable central interface: Everybody using the system sees the same dashboard, but each one only shows the projects that person is working on.

Unique BI integration: The system will eventually have a tool that captures detailed information from the SharePoint database about each contract and the work involved.

Yammer social components: This is hosted externally, allowing for document and calendar sharing as well as real-time reporting and communication for people collaborating on projects.

The delivery

The contract workspace was created by a joint Integen/Fulton Hogan team. Intergen managed the SharePoint implementation and business intelligence rollout, with up to 20 people from Fulton Hogan involved at different points during the process. 

Agile project management allowed for rapid iteration, highlighted by three intensive product scrums. “Agile was a first for me,” says Graeme, “but Intergen understood the concept. They really educated the rest of the project team and we achieved more than we thought would be possible.”

The gain

Fulton Hogan has greatly improved its internal business intelligence and document sharing capabilities. “The feedback and participation from our users with this new site has already exceeded expectation, Graeme said.

The business case

When Fulton Hogan’s largest client changed its systems and information reporting standards for contracts, Fulton Hogan seized the opportunity to not only meet NZTA’s requirements but elevate how it shared and used information internally.

The business value

  • The new system creates new contract workspaces for each contract, but gives each user a centralised dashboard personalised with only the contracts relevant to them
  • Fulton Hogan can not only meet new NZTA requirements, but has also improved its internal business intelligence and document sharing capabilities
  • Enhanced collaboration and social capability for contractors and joint venture partners across the country

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