AXA XL rolls out contractor schedule benchmarking service

AXA XL rolls out contractor schedule benchmarking service | Insurance Business America

AXA XL rolls out contractor schedule benchmarking service

AXA XL’s construction insurance team has launched a new schedule benchmarking service to strengthen their subcontractor default insurance (SDI) clients’ risk management efforts.

“The global pandemic has shined a light on the importance of strong project controls to effectively manage risk,” said Gary Kaplan, president of AXA XL’s North America construction business. “Now is a time when every contractor is very aware of the importance of keeping the pulse on productivity, supply-chain risks, and staying ahead of potential impacts to projects. With this new service, we are helping our clients take stock of their scheduling practices and pinpoint where they might improve to drive project success – and subcontractor performance risk is at the heart of this.”

“The construction industry has a wide range of scheduling practices – and notable inconsistency from project to project,” said Jim Richert, SDI profit center leader at AXA XL. “Our RE team has had great results using the benchmarking approach across a number of key processes – such as prequalification, sub selection, and quality management – in order to provide our partners with insight into how their risk practices stack up against their peers.

“It only made sense that we apply this concept to schedule management controls. We see time and time again that early recognition of challenges creates opportunity to mitigate impact. At its foundation, strong schedule management drives opportunity to stay ahead of problems in a manner that helps to reduce risk for everyone involved.”

As part of the benchmarking service, AXA XL’s SDI construction risk engineering team reviews three categories:

  • Schedule process and procedures: The overall framework of the contractor’s scheduling processes, procedures and resources.
  • Schedule development: The contractor’s practices for developing and approving the schedules that commit to the overall duration of the project: the bid/proposal schedule and the baseline contract schedule.
  • Schedule updates/ongoing management: The practices for making regular project schedule updates.

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The process assesses about 40 schedule performance indicators, according to AXA XL. As part of the assessment, the company has partnered with tech firm SmartPM Technologies to support the analysis of schedules from three projects and identify recommendations for focused project controls. This also allows the contractor to observe the value of SmartPM’s analytics in real time, AXA XL said.

“Sound practices in construction scheduling are imperative to achieving optimal project success,” said Michael Pink, CEO of SmartPM Technologies. “Although this is generally known, the construction industry continually fails to implement it. It’s critical to understand what makes for a truly good or usable schedule, and to have visibility into schedule data produced through advanced analytics. Empowering companies to do these things alone will have a positive impact within construction companies, and eventually improve project controls for the overall industry.”