The National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) has confirmed that it has become entirely digital with a cloud-based “Data Lake” software. It is the first construction sector organisation which has become fully digital.
The entire NHAI project management process has now been converted from manual to an online interface, where the complete execution of the project operations including ‘workflow with schedules’ and ‘alert system’ have been designed. The authority has also mentioned that contract decisions, project documentation, and approvals are now being made via portal only.
With advanced research, the Data Lake software will predict delays, possible conflicts, and render warnings, thereby accelerating the process of decision-making. The software will also ease the process of making correct and timely decisions, as the system is likely to predict the financial impact of different alternatives on the basis of historical data.
NHAI mentioned that it has a significant number of arbitration cases that are pending with a hefty amount of claims and counterclaims. Most of the conflicts are generic, such as transfer of facilities, delay in handing over a site which is free from encumbrances, idling charges concerning equipment, machinery, staff, and delay in decision making.
These conflicts can be reduced with the help of the Data Lake software. The software is capable of tracking and monitoring all such constraints. It will also ensure that work is carried out in a transparent manner within the deadlines.
Since all processes will be portal-based, the process of making decisions will be quicker and will ultimately reduce the chances of litigation in the future.
All NHAI stakeholders, including consultants, contractors, and independent engineers, are already using it extensively. All documents and correspondences related to the project will be stored in a digital format in a cloud-based ‘Data Lake’ which is connected to GIS tagging and a unique project ID. This will help in retrieving project-related data from any location whenever it is required.
NHAI’s e-Office module has also been added into the system so that every correspondence can flow digitally from field units to headquarters in a secured manner.
In the present COVID-19 situation, while most of the companies are facing a lot of challenges to work, NHAI employees are continuing their work happily without the fear of physical contact or the need to touch physical files.
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