Adrián Hernández
Commercial Director of Digital Transformation
View from the Top

Software’s Role in Enhancing Large-scale Construction Design

Tue, 01/21/2020 - 11:18

Q: Which companies has IPSOtec worked with in the last year and how does it differentiate itself from the competition?

A: IPSOtec is aligned with consulting and services companies that work with oil and gas enterprises to provide direction on engineering systems for plant design and document management of engineering information. Amongst the companies we have worked with this year are the Mexican engineering firm Domótica Industrial, as well as Mexico-based construction company ICA Fluor and Jacobs Engineering from the US. We are also collaborating with Worley, Jacobs Engineering’s parent company. Our work with them entails the implementation of a range of software systems for the development of their engineering projects. The choice of system depends on the specificity of the project. For example, the engineering plan for a refinery project is different to that of an offshore project, therefore different software is required. We are also implementing solutions for project performance, in relation to cost control activities and time management targets. IPSO delivers years of industry experience to our clients.

Q: What software does IPSOtec use and what are the reasons for this choice?

A: Approximately 80 percent of the software IPSOtec works with comes from Intergraph. However, Aveva software is more robust for upstream engineering projects. We use Bentley software programs for engineering document management, which is more specialized than common document management. Even though Bentley is a viable option, Autodesk is the top choice for Business Information Modeling (BIM) projects, which is ideal for projects within the civil engineering sphere.

Q: What are the major challenges IPSOtec identifies as obstacles for wider use of specialized software in the industry?

A: One obstacle is the occasional absence of support from top level management in companies regarding training initiatives for specialized software like BIM. There is also a blind spot in the use of cloud systems, which are an incredible advancement in the implementation of software for business. Contemporary pay-as-you-go models are helpful to reduce budget concerns and the cloud also removes the necessity of being present on-site to use certain systems. Software as a Service (SaaS) has also come into its own with the cloud. But changing attitudes when it comes to the cloud can be difficult with technology-averse companies.

Q: What are the obstacles to sharing data information in consortiums or partnerships?

A: Companies are concerned that they may lose control over the processes and investments they have made if they share information with partner companies. Some JVs can be impeded by a lack of trust where neither partner wants to share knowledge. The standard model we have come across is for companies to work separately and to integrate their information and designs during the last stage of a project. This is particularly the case with IOCs that have recently entered the country. But this method of working can be problematic on mega projects where the financial risk of working alone requires the involvement of additional partner companies.

Q: How can Mexico’s oil and gas industry benefit from the use of digital twins?

A: Digital twins have been put to good use by PEMEX, which as an owner-operator contracts out its engineering and design work. If PEMEX is building an offshore platform, the use of a digital twin means that the logistics involved in overseeing the project no longer need to be considered and money is saved. Similarly, the slow process of transferring information between worksites is avoided. A digital twin allows for the sharing of information between stakeholders, from engineers to insurers, or with a contracted maintenance company.


IPSOtec is a company with more than 20 years of experience selecting and implementing the best information technologies in different areas: supply chain, financial self-service (bank ATMs) and automation of production processes.