Infrastructure clients reveal eight data principles for success

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The Infrastructure Clients Group (ICG) has revealed the eight data and digital principles for project success.

The eight data and digital principles are:

  • purpose;
  • culture;
  • collaboration;
  • process;
  • value;
  • data;
  • security; and
  • change

These principles dovetail with the Construction Playbook and the Infrastructure & Projects Authority’s Transforming Infrastructure Performance Roadmap, and Principles for project success.

“These principles apply not only to projects, but also to the ecosystem of organisations that come together to deliver projects. The maximum benefit of these principles will be realised when they are implemented across traditional organisational boundaries,” the ICG said.

Purpose principle

This first principle focuses on outcomes. It states that the project outcomes and data and digital outcomes should be completely aligned. This principle also issues the reminder that technology should be used as “an enabler of the stated purpose, not as an end in itself. Adopt technology wisely and integrate it to achieve the purpose. Avoid getting trapped by stand-alone technology.”

The outcomes should also be co-created. “This means that they shouldn’t be created by one person or one group in isolation, but instead a collaborative approach should be taken, engaging those from the supplier ecosystem and perhaps other different teams that would usually be involved,” said Anna Bowskill, Mott MacDonald digital analyst, at the launch.

Culture principle

The second principle calls for the building of a culture that is digital by default.

Clear leadership for data and digital should be provided from the top, with active support in the middle.

Data should be more accessible to all, acknowledging that different people interact with it in a variety of ways. ‘Digital’ people and ‘delivery’ people should be encouraged to collaborate to enable this.

Collaboration principle

The third principle states that the information requirements should be defined and agreed with the supplier ecosystem, and that a platform should be established to share project delivery data.

Interoperability also features here. The ICG states: “Promote flexibility and resilience in shared systems. Do not get locked into bespoke or proprietary solutions.”

Process principle

The fourth principle calls for data and digital approaches to be used to “transform project delivery processes rather than simply digitising existing processes”.

Indeed, the ICG issues this reminder: “Do not automate dysfunction.”

The friction to information flow should be minimised “because information carries value”.

Value principle

This principle calls for information to be managed as an asset. “Recognise that the value of data relates to what it is used for. Avoid single-use data,” the ICG states.

Data principle

This principle reinforces the mantra of ‘look after your data, and your data will look after you’. Clear data governance and stewardship should be established, and data quality should be defined in relation to the purpose the data is used for.

Data should be shareable even if it is not being shared.

Security principle

Vulnerabilities should be addressed “appropriately and proportionately”, the ICG states. Data and digital approaches should be used to improve physical and personal security, not just cyber security.

Protecting personal data should be a priority.

Change principle

This final principle states that a roadmap from the current position to the desired destination should be created with regular benchmarking.

This principle also highlights that people should be involved: “Address human and organisational factors as well as the technical solutions.”

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