LCi – Embracing Lean Thinking

Ireland’s Construction Sector embracing Lean Thinking through Lean Construction Ireland (LCi)

With over 1,600 members and an ambitious 3-year development plan, Lean Construction Ireland (LCi) have recently made the decision to incorporate and have now appointed a Board of Directors. This initiative, to incorporate, will allow the Directors to concentrate on growing the association and the development of lean principles within the Irish construction sector through new relationships and strategic partnerships with the public/private and academic sectors.

With increasing regulation, international competition and a push on improving efficiencies to reduce project costs, delays and quality issues; many successful Irish companies in the Architectural, Engineering and Construction (AEC) sector are utilising tools and techniques developed in other highly productive sectors such as the manufacturing and services. These companies improve efficiencies and ultimately become more competitive by consistently delivering projects better and faster through effective teamwork, collaboration and the use of lean thinking.

Apart from implementing digital technologies such as Building Information Modelling (BIM) and associated data management, companies are also looking at optimising their entire supply chain through the use of lean tools and the creation of a lean culture within their organisations. These new structures utilise various lean tools such as 5S, Value Stream Mapping and Last Planner to reduce the 8 known wastes such as defects, overproduction, waiting, non-utilised talent, transportation, inventory, motion and extra processing.

The LCi Board of Directors has been established to ensure all key sectors and influencers are involved and working groups have been established to manage the important elements of Lean in Contracts, Training/Education, Media & Communications and Product/Services enhancement.

The following are recently nominated Board of Directors for LCi:

No. Name Board Position Company
1 Richard Fitzpatrick Chairperson / Director NPHDB
2 John French Vice-Chairperson / Director Intel
3 Kevin White Company Treasurer / Director Jones Engineering
4 Angelyn Rowan Company Secretary / Director Eversheds-Sutherland
6 Joe O’Sullivan Director / Board Member Sisk
7 Gary Widger Director / Board Member Mercury Engineering
8 Trevor McSharry Director / Board Member IT Sligo
9 Elizabeth Wheeler Director / Board Member Henchion-Reuter
10 Richard Casey Director / Board Member DPS Engineering
11 Jason Casey Director / Board Member Ardmac
12 Derek Sinnott Director / Board Member Waterford IT
13 Avril Behan Director / Board Member Dublin IT
14 Denis Leonard Director / Board Member GRAHAM Construction
15 Niall Stone Director / Board Member Designer Group
16 Perry Haughton Director / Board Member BAM

The depth and breadth of knowledge within the association is second to none and with a vision to delivering projects better, faster and together – anyone working within the Irish construction sector will certainly benefit from becoming a member and having the opportunity to regularly network with some of the leaders of home building, commercial construction and public-sector projects.

Richard Fitzpatrick (LCi Chair) says; “Activity within the Irish construction sector has now risen continuously for the past 4 ½ years and this is an extremely exciting time for the industry. With growth projected to continue, the LCi is best placed to assist construction companies (large & small) and their clients to develop a lean management culture throughout their organisations and projects.”

Lean Construction Ireland, and its Directors, are tasked with promoting the application of lean thinking and practices within the Irish AEC industry and to continue to assist companies achieve value added construction projects. Their ambition is to challenge the status quo of current project thinking and delivery methods and advance the business case for lean construction knowledge & skills.

LCi encourages all stakeholders within the construction sector to visit their website for further information about lean, how to get started, service providers etc. There are some excellent resources such as case studies and webinars which are constantly being added to.