Interview with Nathan Newman, Manager, Regional Global Facilities Group, Burns & McDonnell

Nathan Newman

Q: How can the engineering, architecture, construction (AEC) industry efficiently take a project from planning through construction to meet the demands of our aging infrastructure and needs?

A: We have to look at taking an alternative approach to project delivery. Traditionally, project teams consist of engineers, designers and constructors from a variety of firms, under separate contracts, and with their own expectations and schedules. When drawings and plans start transitioning from one firm to the next, time is wasted in relearning the project, and it creates more room for error. With an integrated team approach, we unify the crew on day one. It gives everyone a holistic perspective of the project, provides a deeper understanding of the details, saves time and reduces the margin for error.


Q: What are the primary risk factors that an integrated approach helps control?

A: Total installed cost is the primary risk factor, followed closely by schedule. The integrated team approach Burns & McDonnell takes has proven to effectively control both factors. Understanding what drives a project – whether that be regulations or revenue – helps define project scope and optimize construction hours.

And, developing that understanding early on with the entire project crew creates a creative and transparent environment so the most cost-effective, sustainable and efficient solutions can be brought to the client.


Q: What makes the Burns & McDonnell approach unique?

A: Our company is structured to have a wide range of resources available in-house. This is a significant advantage for our clients because it controls cost and increases speed in getting the right people working on a project. Everyone involved is committed to making the project a success. We want to help our clients identify a delivery method that best fits their needs and goals for their projects. Our goal is to help them achieve a great project in the end and make sure they have a great experience throughout the entire process.


Learn more about how the Burns & McDonnell integrated team approach is working and disrupting the norm: