Vanilla 1.1.10 is a product of Lussumo. More Information: Documentation, Community Support.

  1.   0 points
    Is India the only place where we can consider outsourcing architectural CAD work to? We have had colleagues that have become frustrated with outsourcing to India, mainly due to over promising and under delivering! The age old problem!!

    How do we covercome the problem that we have become so used to having drafting work done by people that sit within the same office? Communication is easier and mistakes can be rectified quicker - we can sit accross a desk and thrash out problems quickly. There is also not the problem of having cultural barriers and potential language / communication issues.

    However, another line of thought is that as architects we have become lazy? Are our own individual work styles and processess so poor that we have to have too many meetings with our drafters in order to achieve the desired outcome?

    The fact is, that our colleagues in the Engineering sector appear to be leveraging the benefits of outsourcing far more successfully than us. Why is this? We are consistently squeezed on fees and often end up following client demands rather than leading project teams towards real innovation. We seem to be losing our skills as influencers.
    • CommentAuthorFBE Rocks
    • CommentTimeOct 10th 2006
      0 points
    what are you trying to say exactly. if you want to draft plans yourself, do it!

    I dont know how to make a fire with sticks anymore. im not gonna cry over it
    • CommentAuthorarchitecto
    • CommentTimeOct 10th 2006
      0 points
    Thanks for your comment FBE.

    I was attempting to encourage some robust debate regarding architectural outsourcing in Australia, looking at perceived benefits / pitfalls etc. You seem to have clearly missed the point!!

    Perhaps thinking strategically or looking at the bigger picture is beyond you? If you have something of value to add, please do so, otherwise please post your nonsensical comments elsewhere!!
    • CommentAuthortaegroup
    • CommentTimeOct 12th 2006
      0 points
    There's no doubt that successful Architectural outsourcing is a tough business to get right. Having been in architectural outsourcing business for 18 months, it became apparent to us that forming a strong foundation plan and robust process was a key factor in the success of ongoing outsourcing or even project by project outsourcing. Communication is of key importance and at TAE we insist on establishing an Understanding Document with clients before commencing any outsourcing activity - even a pilot project. All parties need to be clear as to their roles and to the expectations of all stakeholders involved.

    Working on Autodesk Buzzsaw / Aconex has made the process even more successful, as all parties can collaborate effectively wherever they are around the world - online. This isn't always suitable for smaller documentation and animation projects, and a dedicated SFTP (encrypted) is usually all that is needed here. However, for medium to large size documentation projects we encourage the use of collaboration software to assist in the project management and allocation of work etc.

    Should any forum member like to view an example of our Understanding Document or discuss our process model in more detail we would be more than happy to assist. We're happy to provide help to practices experiencing difficulty in this area or to answer any questions. We have experienced both the highs and lows of outsourcing and feel that sharing these experiences and the experiences of others is part of the Continuous Improvement journey. As more and more of our architectural and interior design clients are experiencing people resourcing problems, we're happy to provide advice - whether you engage us professionally or not. We're also currently assisting Melbourne Uni on a paper in this area and hopefully that will be available to the forum shortly. Please post a reply via the forum or email tim@taegroup.com.au for more info.
  2.   0 points
    Hi there

    I understand your concerns. I would suggest you ask some of these questions to your colleagues who have outsourced work to India.
    a. Have they checked the bonafides/references of the people in India?
    b. Were the sources in India recommended by someone in Australia?
    c. Do the group in India have some conterpart connection in Australia?

    The reason I am saying that is because I am involved in similar thing. I am Australian Citizen, graduated as an architect from Mumbai and completed my Masters @ Syd Uni. I have been working here for 9 years. I have established connections...in fact my mates who i studied architecture do the CAD work for me as per Australian Standards.
    You really need to identify someone like that.

    Cheers...If you have any questions please free to write me an email.


    Is India the only place where we can consider outsourcing architectural CAD work to? We have had colleagues that have become frustrated with outsourcing to India, mainly due to over promising and under delivering! The age old problem!!

    How do we covercome the problem that we have become so used to having drafting work done by people that sit within the same office? Communication is easier and mistakes can be rectified quicker - we can sit accross a desk and thrash out problems quickly. There is also not the problem of having cultural barriers and potential language / communication issues.

    However, another line of thought is that as architects we have become lazy? Are our own individual work styles and processess so poor that we have to have too many meetings with our drafters in order to achieve the desired outcome?

    The fact is, that our colleagues in the Engineering sector appear to be leveraging the benefits of outsourcing far more successfully than us. Why is this? We are consistently squeezed on fees and often end up following client demands rather than leading project teams towards real innovation. We seem to be losing our skills as influencers.
    • CommentAuthorarchiprix
    • CommentTimeOct 20th 2006
      0 points
    We are just losing skills and making ourselves redundant.
    When we are no longer in charge of drawings we should just call ourselves architectural design consultants, as perhaps the next generation won't even know how to draft. On one of our last projects we even used a "services consultant coordinator" consultant, so what the hell do we do ??? Design the portico?But maybe we can outsource that too.
    • CommentAuthordav_
    • CommentTimeOct 26th 2006
      0 points
    We are just losing skills and making ourselves redundant.
    When we are no longer in charge of drawings we should just call ourselves architectural design consultants, as perhaps the next generation won't even know how to draft. On one of our last projects we even used a "services consultant coordinator" consultant, so what the hell do we do ??? Design the portico?But maybe we can outsource that too.


    No, no. We will just work for project home developers. I bags being the guy who names the homes!! Like "The Mediocre" or perhaps "The Clumsy", or "The Poorly Sited"...The Poorly Sited has 2 porticos!

    I do not understand this constant pursuit of profit at the expense of the social fabric of this country. Banks, Telcos and now Architecture Firms. But then its just a reflection of our world anyway. Ah well.
    •  
      CommentAuthorpeter
    • CommentTimeNov 4th 2006
      0 points
    Here is an interview with the CEO of Ananta Satellier, apparently India’s largest firm "providing outsourced architecture and interior design services to overseas firms". He says they can do work for overseas firms at about half the price.

    EXPRESS ESTATES 03.11.06

    It doesn't seem to work on a prooject basis according to him, as it takes up to 4 months for the outsourcer and outsourcee to sort out how to work together.

    What will the globalisation of architectural services do for the cost of the services in Australia? I suspect that architects who outsource are not going to be able to profit from it for too long. The client will want to profit from it instead. I hope that outsourcing overseas doesn't just end up shrinking architects' fees and responsibilities.
    • CommentAuthortaegroup
    • CommentTimeNov 6th 2006
      0 points
    The article from Ananta Satellier is certainly an interesting read.

    We would like to offer the forum our personal experiences (good and bad!!) of architectural outsourcing from Australia. We're based in Melbourne, but operate throughout Australia and NZ.

    There is no doubt that for outsourcing to realise its potential, there has to be a cultural shift within a practice. From our experience this shift usually takes place due to 3 main problem areas - (1) The lack of qualified people resources available internally to complete projects or (2) Cost pressure - from overseas competitors on tenders, from end clients or from project managers - this means that savings in the visualisation / documentation phase have to be realised in order to successfully secure the project and finally (3) The lack of qualified resources able to work on specific softwares - i.e. Revit, Microstation, ArchiCAD, ADT, AutoCAD etc.

    Often, the question for practices is: do we turn exciting potential projects away due to lack of resources or software skills or do we work smarter, and outsource labour intensive work offshore. This can be a difficult decision, as no-one wants to see work move offshore that possibly could be completed in Australia. However, due to the critical lack of available people in our industry this is certainly a viable solution. We like to look at business long term. It's about ensuring that our businesses are sustainable and that we are able to continually add value and maintain a competitive advantage. This is not only true for the directors or leaders within a practice, but also for the current employees. We do not want to start losing both national and international business because we are uncompetitive or because we do not have the resources available to complete the projects on time. Whether we like it or not US, Canadian, UK and Asian firms are outsourcing and outsourcing effectively….NOW. One of our Sydney based clients recently lost a large multi-use project as their documentation component was 40% higher than that of a Canadian competitor. The Canadian company had a documentation facility in Pakistan.

    It is true that, in order for outsourcing to be successful one has to follow a stringent, tried and tested process as there is a learning curve for both the practice and the service provider. Our experience and view is not the same as the article listed above. Project by Project outsourcing can work, and work well, as long as the process is correct from the start. Expectations and Perceptions have to be managed effectively and all stakeholders involved in the design and implementation phase. This is often not the case, and the relationship is under pressured from the start. We have an Ov7 model, which can be viewed at the following link

    http://taegroup.com.au/pages.php?catId=52&url=menu_html/About4_Outsourcin.html

    The questions raise in this TAE article are critical to success, and answers need to be found and documented to move forward. The working document that is created has to be pliable, with the ability to move and shift as the business or projects change.

    Cost savings of up to 50% can be achieved on documentation and visualisation projects, but there is a learning curve and effort is required in the short term to ensure that specifications, layering, standards etc. are replicated. We normally suggest a pilot project is completed to start with. This pilot project can be a "live" project or a project that has recently been completed. The main purpose is for both parties to learn the processes and working practices of each other and decide whether there is value in moving forward. Sometimes it becomes clear that a different approach is needed, as something is not working correctly etc. However, often this pilot project works so well that new projects are added quickly and our drawing office is able to replicate the desired quality both quickly and efficiently.

    Communication is of key importance right the way through the project. We use a combination of face to face project meetings at the client site, Aconex or Autodesk Buzzsaw collaboration software (for larger projects), the encrypted TAE Sharefile facility, telephone and email to ensure speedy, regular and robust communication. We have found that simple, regular communication reduces the risk of problems arising due to lack of scope clarity, deadlines etc.

    Our drawing facility is based in Mumbai (formerly Bombay), India. Our project management is conducted from Melbourne, Australia. All our architects, designers and documenters work solely on international projects. Our due diligence process ensures that only the very best people are hired (Indian and foreign trained) and nurtured into our working culture. We are as passionate about our employee welfare as we are about our ongoing business success. We ensure that our people work in a western office environment, with all facilities you would expect available to them. We work within a very competitive market in India and failure to look after employees means they will easily find a company that will. We have world class HR practices and retention strategies to ensure we engage and keep hold of key knowledge workers. We actively encourage our clients to visit our facility and meet our valued people face to face. This can be a great help in forming a strong, ongoing relationship.

    We genuinely feel that we have the best offshore documentation and visualisation facility available internationally. We are able to consistently deliver value to practices in an efficient, secure and process driven environment. We also have a lot of fun on the way!!!

    Please feel free to email me personally should you require further information or assistance in this area - tim@taegroup.com.au - you can also visit our new website at www.taegroup.com.au I am more than happy to provide assistance whether you decide to use our services or not. We want to assist Australian and NZ based practices in anyway we can.
  3.   0 points
    Are any practices currently outsourcing successfully/ Does anyone have any positive/negative stories they wish to share. I'd be interested to hear from anyone who have experienced architectural outsourcing - visualisation or documentation.

    We have used an Australian based outsourcing practice who have an offshore office, and after some initial teething problems, this is now working very well for us - especially their BIM skills, which really surprised me!!
  4.   0 points
    Architecto, i would like to tell you about our services.

    Eigen wwas set up by Laing O’Rourke to meet the shortage of resources in the construction industry, at an economical price. It’s a concept followed by a number of the major Professional companies who have opened offices in India.

    Notwithstanding this, we have been encouraged to spread our wings and work for companies other than LOR and now have an impressive portfolio of clients and to stand on our own two feet and make a profit.

    LOR gave a half share of Eigen to their joint venture partner in India (DLF), plus a senior manager and they remain the three shareholders.

    We currently employ around 400 in-house, experienced and qualified staff working economically in India for Architects, Civil, Structural, Mechanical and Electrical Engineers and Construction companies throughout the UK, Middle East and Australia.

    Specifically I believe we can help you with CAD drawing, 3D models, clash detection, some minor design, quantities, and the like. I would appreciate the opportunity to discuss this in more detail.

    Our clients use us because we have a large pool of resources to call upon, because we have an understanding of their needs have English speaking qualified staff, all the softwares currently in use and because we save them money through our daily rates by allowing optimization of staff. You are never caught short due to insufficient staff, but don’t pay for people when work is slower

    In the meantime, you can see more of what we do at www.eigen-tech.com or mail me at vagrawal@eigen-tech.com

    -Cheers mate,
    Vivex
  5.   0 points

    Obviously we are dealing here with large projects and obviously we are also dealing here with the globalisation influences of the internet.

    What we are not dealing here with is the effect that transfering jobs 'overseas' has on a local economy. India obviously benefits, at least if this thread is to be reconitered correctly. (and FBErocks, do please shut up)

    My question is, can we possibly use the benefits that we have as a nation of designers at specified standards of employment and rates of pay, to improve the standards that are experianced 'overseas'. If these people are to effectively become 'employees' how is it that Canada can undercut Australia by 40% when using Indians unless it were Indians who actually lost out on conditions. AND was the consequent drop in price comesurate with a drop in quality of out put or delivery or both.

    And who cares?

    No disrepsect intended but I think a bit of spruiking has gone on in this thread. Is that a fair assesment?

    • CommentAuthorinfo
    • CommentTimeMay 11th 2009
      0 points
    This thread should appeal to the 90% of the arch/cons/eng profession with no talent
    • CommentAuthorpeter
    • CommentTimeMay 13th 2009
      0 points

    Simon, I deleted a heap of adposts from this thread in 2006 (it is old). Some seem to have crept back. I remember one poster he posters seemed not to get what I was talking about - that a post could be noncommercial..

Add your comments

    Username PasswordPlease enter the following code:
  • Format comments as