[Interview] Adam Hailey, Director of Global Design Engineering and New Product Development at GENIE – When Industry meets BIM

GENIE embraces BIM and brings together the worlds of Industry and construction

We always enjoy seeing how the worlds of industry and construction are complementary and how they feed off each other. Accessibility and safety on construction sites is one of the major concerns of construction professionals in order to preserve the well-being of workers.

Genie, leader in lifting systems for construction sites and other technologies, is at the heart of this sector. And it was only natural that they very quickly became interested in BIM, in particular to benefit their customers. This week, we welcome Adam Hailey, Global Director of Design Engineering and New Product Development for GENIE, who honors us to come and talk to us about their company.

Adam Hailey, Director of Global Design Engineering and New Product Development at GENIE

Hi Adam and welcome to ABCD Blog.  To begin, please introduce yourself to our readers.

My name is Adam Hailey, I am the Director of Engineering responsible Globally for New Product Development, Technology and R&D at Genie.  I’ve been with the company for 15 years, and over that time have held various roles within Engineering and Product Management.

So you are Genie Director of Global Design Engineering and New Product Development, and as a market leader, a familiar name for experts in the aerial equipment sector. Please tell us about the Genie brand, its activity, products, organization, locations, etc…?

Genie is a Global leading manufacturer of Aerial Work Platforms and Material Handlers.  We are best known for Innovation and the Quality and Safety of our products.  We have manufacturing capability across the globe, with major footprint in the US, Italy and China and in each of these locations we support the world class manufacturing with our equally impressive Engineering teams.

What type of equipment and service solutions is Genie specialized in?

I always like to say that we specialize in solutions that keep people safe.  We deliver high quality products that safely lift people and materials to the places that work needs to be done.  As our customers are primarily focused on rental, even though Safety and Quality are our first concern we also must keep the Return on Investment for their business in mind when we are developing new solutions.

There are of course other companies with a similar positioning. What differentiates you from the others?  Would you define the sector as competitive?

Our market is extremely competitive, with new companies to “watch out for” coming in every year.  Genie has been an important part of this market for ~53 years, that experience has led to a developed expertise in how to design, build and deliver products that our customers and their customers can depend on to be safe, durable and productive.  We continue to innovate in our products and process to maximize the productivity and return for our customers and provide solutions that allow them to tackle more and more applications safely and efficiently.

When did Genie begin to take interest in BIM and for what reasons? Did it have anything to do with being based in the USA, or was it a need that you felt coming from your customers?

The demand for BIM actually came from our customers in the UK and Europe at first.  As we started having conversations about why BIM was important to them, we began to realize the value and impact it could have on our industry globally.

What would you say are the main advantages of using BIM in your field of activity ?

What are its key benefits? The biggest advantage I see in BIM is the ability to plan.  Having detailed information models, now – not just of the buildings themselves – but of the tools and machines that will be used to build and maintain them, gives our customers and their customers immense power to plan and optimize the use of our products and reduce costs.

How did you approach the idea of BIM as a company, and how did you go about introducing it to your customers? Did the idea originate in the USA?

Once we recognized the value and demand for BIM we took a very aggressive approach to delivering as many models as possible to be available for our customers.  Many customers were anticipating the release, and others were delighted when we made public announcement of the initiative, this offering was a new way for our rental customers to serve their customers better.

Is BIM essentially used in relation with Genie equipment and the white papers and documents that your company provides?

We have implemented BIM across a large part of our product families and the details that are provide with each model basically allow the models to be used as 3-Dimensional spec sheets.

How would you describe your BIM offering?  Would you say that it is particularly intelligent or flexible? Does it allow users to create simulations with a particularly high degree of precision that incorporate the weight of loads, the working envelope, boom movements, etc…? What’s special about Genie BIM tools?

First, I would say our BIM offering is comprehensive, we have multiple dozens of models available for our customers to access.  Each model contains detailed information regarding the performance and specifications that matter to the end users, and are flexible and dynamic to help them make important decisions as to how they will execute their projects.  They are truly a 3-Dimensional representation of a spec sheet – a 21st century approach to project planning.

How many product lines are covered by the Revit BIM format?

We currently have over 30 models available for our customers to access, however, even as new products are being developed we will continue to expand the BIM offering as well.

What are the advantages for project managers and architects?

As I’ve talked about previously the biggest benefit that BIM brings is in the ability to plan.  More exact planning of work around complex job sites allows for a reduction in wasted time and resource, this ultimately make jobs go faster and cost less.

What fields of activity use BIM tools the most? Construction, artisans, facilities management companies, other?

Anyone who needs to plan, design, construct or maintain complex jobsites or buildings can realize value in BIM, it is more dynamic version of a spec sheet and allows for visualisation of products in the work environment that may highlight potential issues or unique considerations before the work begins.

Are there any specially original areas of application for BIM tools. What about its use for emergency services for example?

More exact planning can be a benefit to many types of work or jobsite, I can envision it being used in just about any application where heavy machines or tools are used!

Have you an example of a project where one of your BIM tools was used to help plan a particularly challenging job?

I have many examples of where BIM has been used to successfully plan jobs, as well as many examples of where BIM would have been a great resource to have!  In one case, a rental customer was able to help reduce the cost of a long term project by working with the contractor to plan the work in stages and utilize only the machines that were required to access the work when it was needed.  The alternative would have been to just deliver the larger (more expensive!) machine and use it through the entirety of the project… for a significantly higher cost!

Why did you choose the Autodesk Revit format? How many downloads are available in the Genie BIM library?

The Revit format has been around for over 20 years and well known and accepted in the industry.  It made sense to use a format that was already a fixture for the people who would get the most value out of BIM.  We currently offer over 30 models for download on our Genie BIM site: www.genielift.com/en/support/BIM

Can customers use your BIM library to make virtual reality jobsite simulations, even if they do not have any prior experience or particular skills in the use of BIM tools?

Each BIM model is configured to be accurate and dynamic, this allows for precise jobsite simulation and exact planning.  The models themselves are easily manipulated and can be utilized by even newly familiar users.

In which countries are your BIM tools the most popular? Where can they be downloaded from? Are they available in several different languages?

The largest demand for our BIM models so far has come from the UK / EU and US. The specifications themselves can be setup to be displayed with either metric or imperial units.  All of the Genie BIM assets can be found on the Genie BIM site: www.genielift.com/en/support/BIM

We even created a video explaining the installation and use of our BIM objects.

Are your BIM products the first step on a long journey with BIM and digital? Do you intend to create a Revit plugin for example, to access tools more easily and set-up simulations even more precisely?

We will continue to look to what our customers need to make their businesses more efficient and more profitable.  Being able to offer digital solutions that enhance our customers business, available with a few mouse clicks or finger taps, will be an important part of the value proposition as we look to the future.

When did you first hear about ABCD Blog and what do you think about us?

I did some research on the Internet on BIM and found you quite easily! You have a very good approach to the vision of the business and the use of BIM for our areas of predilection. So I thought I had to contact you!

Many thanks for sharing your company’s BIM strategy with us Adam.  Congratulations on all the groundwork that make for solid foundations on your journey with BIM.

Official BIM site of GENIE here.

To contact GENIE, click here.

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