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CW Awards 2017 Sponsor focus: Ian Hauptfleisch, CCS

Construction Computer Software's regional head discusses the challenges faced by the industry in 2017, and the sector's resilience through the year

Ian Hauptfleisch, general manager, CCS Gulf.
Ian Hauptfleisch, general manager, CCS Gulf.

Ian Hauptfleisch,  speaks to Construction Week about the regional construction sector and the challenges faced this year, ahead of the CW Awards 2017. 

Hauptfleisch is general manager of Construction Computer Software (Gulf) and head of Construction Computer Software's Europe, MENA, and Central, North, and South Asia operation. 

CCS is a Category Sponsor for the CW Awards 2017. 

The winners of this year’s event will be presented with their accolades during a gala dinner and awards ceremony at Rixos Premium Dubai on Wednesday, 6 December, 2017.

Why is it important that you support the CW Awards 2017?

Personally, I think all of us in the construction industry deserve an award – just for surviving!

The construction industry is one of the most challenging there is when it comes to time, resources, and cash flow.

These, combined with its ever-changing micro (competition, scope, specification, and variations) and macro (political, economic, social, technology, and environmental) nature must be considered.

Any entity that meets – let alone exceeds performance expectations – deserves credit and recognition.

On a different note, the CW Awards also allow us the opportunity to step back, and absorb and celebrate the amazing built environment we’ve all contributed a little to, and in doing so, made the world a better place.

What do you think are the main challenges facing the construction industry in 2017?

The construction industry is a challenging one with low margins and high risks attributable to many unknowns, variables, and complexities under immense time and resource restraints. So, increased accuracy, speed, auditability, and consistency of construction estimation and cost control information, data, and analyses is essential and of priority to any contracting organisation. 

NEXT PAGE: What are the market trends Hauptsfleisch will look out for in 2018?

Projects are essentially the lifeblood of contracting organisations – without projects there would be no designs and planning, no manufacturing of construction and engineering materials and equipment, no employment for a huge labour contingent, no facilities management, no letting – and the list goes on. The repercussions of the lower oil prices have had a marked impact across all business sectors resulting in less private and public projects coming on-line and many retracted or down-scaled post award due to the economic climate.

How would you rate the GCC construction industry’s performance in 2017?

2016 and 2017 have been challenging years in the GCC, not only for CCS, but for the economy and construction industry at large so in one word, resilient – a defining trait of our industry that we all need to be proud of.

How do you expect the Gulf’s construction sector to perform in 2018?

I’m hoping we’re through the worst of the typical cyclical dip we expect in the construction and engineering sector – construction and related entities should have adapted and re-aligned their organisational structures, strategies and goals and taken heed of what transpired over the last two years to come back leaner and stronger than before.

There are always opportunities: sometimes they’re everywhere, other times we can’t see them and in certain cases we have to make them for ourselves. Companies, like CCS and many construction companies that will be walking off with awards and nominations, with decades of pedigree in the construction industry ensure they’re built to last and wouldn’t be here today without that kind of adaptiveness, resilience, and instinct. 
  
Please list the top three categories that you will look out for at the CW Awards 2017.

We will look out for the Contractor of the Year, Infrastructure Project of the Year, Hospitality Project of the Year, Commercial Project of the Year, and Project Manager of the Year. 
 

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