benefits to the construction industry as well, and BFL is no exception. Employees on job sites are no longer hampered by the infrastructure limitations of temporary office trailers. They can relay data, messages and images through smart phones and I-pads using a cloud-based app. Communication between field and office personnel will be enhanced further once Project Team Collaboration is up and running. BFL President David Larson also brings a technology background to the table for the company. Larson completed a bachelor’s degree in construction management at Brigham Young University in 2001, and technology was an integral part of his training. Today, when Larson has questions about emerging construction technologies, he consults with Brian Capt, a professor of building information modeling at Larson’s alma mater. Capt spent 20 years as a design-build general contractor before he began teaching at BYU. He said building information modeling – BIM – hit the construction
industry about a decade ago along with the use of virtual reality. “It helps get things up quicker,” Capt said. “You can create everything with virtual reality. A lot of contractors use it in construction. They get the design from the architect and then build everything in-house.” Construction management majors are in high demand, according to Capt. At BYU they take classes in science, engineering and business. They study cost feasibility and the use of processes. He said that 100 percent of the department’s students in the past 15 years have found jobs in the industry after graduation, and they’re starting at $50,000$60,000 per year. “They’re taking positions as project managers, building information modelers, construction schedulers, estimators and other management jobs,” Capt said. A number of them start their own companies. And some of Capt’s BYU students have gone to work for BFL. The future of building information modeling, Capt said, is Oculus, a virtual
reality headset for use in all phases of construction design and management. “You put on the goggles and can select materials for the job,” he said. “You can walk through the entire project from the parking structure on. It’s good for intricate designs like hospitals because you can see how the equipment will fit in. We teach this to our students.” Another emerging technology in the construction industry is artificial intelligence, or AI, Capt said. “AI is used to make different models in designing projects. You tell it you want this number of units in each part of a project loaded into the system. Ask it to come up with 1,000 different requirements, and you can get 1,000 in 10 minutes. It takes six months off a construction project. It’s science fiction.” JV Driver has integrated BIM and other technologies in certain projects and will introduce their applications to BFL, the next big step in moving the company to the next level of construction management technology.