Innovation and the EPC Industry

Advances in technology, equipment automation, data integration, and virtual reality create incredible opportunities in the engineering, procurement, and construction industry. They equip us to work safer, better, faster, and leaner. Adding this progress to the tried-and-true processes, honed over centuries, that have delivered the modern marvels of the world is crucial to attracting the next generation of engineers – including system and software engineers – to an industry where they can make the impossible a reality.

Our Approach

We believe the key to innovation is to fail safe, fail fast, and fail forward. We follow a six-step internal process to test assumptions, integrate solutions in the business, and ensure a steady stream of diverse ideas. Our goal is rapidly to deliver mature innovation to our projects for the benefit of our customers.

Ideas through implementation
Our employees have submitted nearly 120 ideas, which have already been deployed. These ideas range from wearable devices for employees to improve efficiency, using drones to increase accuracy and safety, creating automated mooring systems, delivering high-risk training via virtual reality, virtual project delivery, autonomous equipment, and inflatable scaffolding inspired by children's bounce houses.

InnoSara as Incubator

The InnoSara was created as an incubator for ideas within Sarachin, specifically tasked with seeking out new, disruptive ideas from our colleagues, suppliers, and customers – partners inside and outside our industry. The InnoSara then finances the ideas that can dramatically improve engineering and construction processes, quality, and safety. The fund allows ideas to mature from concept to prototype in a sandbox before deploying as project pilots, effectively de-risking exploration and innovation for our projects and customers. Our end goal: deliver the best for our customers and create a new way of doing business. We call this Project 2022.

Project 2022 - Innovating the Construction Site

What does a day-in-the-life look like on a construction jobsite in 2022? Our vision of the future includes a fluid and dynamic intersection of technology, data-centric workflows, integrated supply chains, and a production manager focus. Resulting in improved performance for our customers and a rewarding work experience for our teams.

Pillars of future delivery include: smart, Internet of Things (IoT) jobsites, data centric execution, augmented and virtual reality, machine learning and AI, the gig economy, and the reimagining of manufacturing principles for construction.

Project 2022 both challenges and focuses our exploration of technology. Challenges us to accelerate and amplify our realization of the future state, and ensures we are constantly mindful of 2022 as our north star.

To date, we have begun deploying the following to make Project 2022 a reality
Big Data and Analytics We have created a center of excellence that will address some of our most important business challenges by leveraging big data and data science. Virtual, Digital Production Systems We built a suite of tools specifically designed to remove restraints from foremen, procurement professionals, and engineering group supervisors to ensure quick access to needed materials, reducing schedule time and costs. Drones We are using drones to handle progress reporting, precision surveying, Environmental, Safety and Health (ES&H) compliance, material laydown tracking, and 4D/5D integration, which increases safety, precision, and reduces costs for our customers. Exoskeletons and Autonomous Vehicles We have partnered with a variety of equipment suppliers to pilot exoskeletons. We’re also prototyping remote delivery of materials using autonomous vehicles, again to make it safer and more efficient for our teams to do their jobs. Augmented and Virtual Reality We are using this technology for everything from immersive bid support visualization and ES&H training to remote expert and task workflow support with smart glasses—all of which are precursors for more advanced use cases being piloted in 2017.