Effective Interface in Multidisciplinary Organisation

Effective interface is very vital in multidisciplinary organisation for catering the requirements of today’s fast track projects with respect to quality, schedule and value engineering. All these three areas shall be approached simultaneously during the project life cycle. In this blog, I will share my own experience related to “Effective Interface”.

My experience : In one of the project at my previous organization, we released GFC foundation drawings for 60m high steel structure on the same day just after ten minutes of receipt of the input from piping department! There was very high interface between different departments such as Process, Piping, Civil & Structural, Mechanical, Instrumentation, Electrical, etc. Everyone in the organization were astonished with the same since typical time frame for releasing the drawing was generally considered as minimum 30 days of time cycle after receipt of the input for such kind of structure.

Let’s see the methodology which I adopted in that project. In multidisciplinary organization, for each function there are different processes. For each process there are certain input and output will be generated at end of the process. Output for one function will become input for the other function and vice versa. All processes of each function may be divided in two broad stages, firstly, input for other functions and secondly, documented output like -drawings, calculation, etc. For initiating work at downstream disciplines, all inputs are not required simultaneously. The upstream disciplines can furnish the input in stages. Through effective interface, the important input to initiate the work can be mutually discussed and considered even in absence of input through external sources like customer, vendor, etc. This practice will facilitate speeding up the simultaneous work in different functions. With the similar approach, we started working in close coordination with the piping / mechanical group at very initial stage of the project. The entire 3D model was prepared and member sizes /location of bracing were also finalized in the 3D model through the mutual discussion. The clash check was already over at 3D model stage and the foundation design was proceeded even before receipt of the formal input. When we received the formal input, the foundation drawings along with calculations were ready for submission. This is what I call as “Effective Interface”.

What we do at VMS?  VMS is also a multidisciplinary organization having total 8 functions, namely, Architecture, Project Management, Structure, Mechanical (Fire, Utilities & HVAC), Electrical, Civil & Plumbing, Cost & Procurement and Construction Management.


We are following the above mentioned approach of effective interface so that simultaneous working of different functions can be initiated which can ensure meeting tough targets set in the project, required time for adherence to quality along with actively pursuing value engineering in the project life cycle. The output generated through such inputs are getting verified with the final input when received from the external sources and the relevant documents are refined, as required. We have also implemented social networking in our project communications which has indeed resulted in increase of team engagement, collaborative efforts & quick response of internal team members. I will be writing separately on the social networking idea for project communications in the upcoming blogs.

                                                                                                                                       –  Bhavin Shah                                                                                                                                                                                Chief Executive Officer at VMS

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