In the US, Turner is the No. 1 builder in the healthcare, university, hotel, office, and green building sectors; the No. 2 builder for airport facilities; and the No. 3 builder in sports facilities and reconstruction sectors. It provides project management and construction management services internationally and in India. In fact, Turner International offers clients varied expertise in managing the construction of large and complex projects across 18 countries. Jairam Panch, Managing Director, Turner Project Management India, highlights the company's innovative construction solutions.
Please highlight your contribution and innovative solutions for projects in India. In India, we have successfully implemented the 'Suraksha : Safety' programme focusing on workmen safety at site; it was developed by a team of young professionals locally. Turner promotes lean culture, reducing wastage, simplifying repeated tasks and improving productivity on jobsites by collaboratively working with consultants, clients and contractors. We also use state-of-art software, MIS and communication platforms as part of our professional approach to managing our business.
Tell us about innovations in technology that have enabled cost saving and timely completion of projects.
When planned and utilised on jobsites, system formwork reduces the casting cycle substantially, rendering better quality of finish and value for money. Turner promotes green building concepts at the planning stage, which reduces the operation and maintenance cost by at least 20 per cent. We are also looking at prefabricated panels, lightweight panels, flat slabs for residential floors and several other options. However, this needs close collaboration with consultants, contractors and clients.
What importance do you give to safety and labour training?
Building L.I.F.E is a mantra every Turner staff embraces and imparts training about to contractors, clients and workmen. We recently conducted 'Train the Trainer' programme' led by our Regional Director, Environmental Health & Safety, Thomas Greg, to train senior safety staff of Turner India, who in turn will impart training to many more in the business unit. The aforementioned 'Suraksha 24/7' was an innovation aimed at strengthening safety from bottom to top as opposed to the top-down approach taken by many companies. On one of our projects, we recently clocked 38 million safe man hours and we also received the National Safety Bronze Award on one of our large projects in Delhi.
What are the major challenges faced in India particularly?
One is the recognition of a PMC in bringing value to a project rather than being a mere manpower supply. Other challenges are a lack of professionalism, client decision-making, poor planning by contractors, availability of skilled workforce, delay in statutory permits and approvals, government policies and the approach to recognising construction as a major industry. However, with the advent of RERA, we expect an improvement as there is a certain accountability from all stakeholders; this should create an improved professional ecosystem.
Please share your performance and growth rate in FY16-17, and future plans.
We have an India presence of close to a decade with an active business for the past five years, with over 170 staff working on large projects in western and northern India. We have had double-digit growth over the past five years and are positive about future growth considering current market conditions and the need for professionalism on large and complex projects. We want to continue to expand our business with our current clients and look at newer opportunities in various segments, including hospitality and healthcare. We have an active presence in residential, commercial, retail, aviation and iconic projects, and will continue to look at emerging opportunities in the country and geographically expand into southern India.