7.4.21

The Propcast: The Growth of ConTech and Project Management Solutions

In this episode The Propcast talks to Javed Singha from Fieldwire, and Vivin Hegde from Hilti about the growth of ConTech and project management solutions, trends in ConTech, and what we’re seeing with adoption across the globe.

Click here to listen to this episode, and here is a sneak preview of out chat below:

The Propcast by Louisa Dickins, Co-Founder of LMRE the leading Global PropTech recruiter, is brought to you in partnership with CREtech and ReimTech. This show will focus on connecting the PropTechs, real estate funds and VC’s globally…and get everyone talking about innovation of the build to rent environment.

7.4.21

About Our Guests

Javed Singha

https://www.linkedin.com/in/javed-singha-1a78265/

Javed is an entrepreneur and the co-founder of Fieldwire, a collaboration platform for construction, where he focuses on business and product development. Previously, Javed has held leadership roles in healthcare and video game start-ups within start-ups in addition to having been a management consultant. Fieldwire is the simplest way for construction companies to keep everyone organised on the job site. With it's easy to use mobile applications, Fieldwire saves each user up to one hour per day by enabling more efficient information sharing. Fieldwire was recognised by Forbes as one of America’s best start-up employers in 2020.

 

Vivin Hegde

https://www.linkedin.com/in/vivin-hegde/

Vivin is a Construction Technologist, and leads Hilti’s Scouting and Venturing US office to find new technologies that will help bring the next wave of innovation to construction. Vivin also mentors start-ups and enables development of the construction tech ecosystem leveraging over a decade of experience in strategy, sales, project management and operations in multiple continents. Hilti design and manufacture leading-edge technology, software and services, which power the professional construction industry. They are based in over 120 countries worldwise with more than 30,000 employees. Hilti offer a 360 degree service – from design software, products and tools onsite to training, repairs, testing and consultancy.

 

Resources mentioned

LMRE website www.lmre.co.uk

UKPA website www.ukpa.com

Hilti website www.hilti.com

Fieldwire website www.fieldwire.com

 

Insights From This Episode

  • I think there'll be a collision between hardware and software down the line – Javed Singha
  • Bringing new solutions and software helps us be looked at as a newly innovative player – Vivin Hegde
  • We really strive to find people that are builders in whatever capacity that is, it can be with a hammer or a keyboard – Javed Singha
  • You have to pick the right battles, at least initially and once you reach a certain scale, then automatically you can move to the next pace and be much more disruptive – Vivin Hegde
  • Oe suggestion I would have for anybody is really taking ownership of your career and taking the path less travelled – Javed Singha
  • There's no cookie cutter recipe for innovation – Vivin Hegde

 

Episode Transcript

Louisa

Hi everyone and welcome to the Propcast, my name is Louisa Dickins, co-founder of LMRE and board director of the UKPA, and I shall be your weekly host. Each week for 30 minutes, we will be connecting the VCs, PropTech start-ups and real estate professionals globally, and assist in bridging that famous communication gap we all love talking about. So, sit back, relax and enjoy the show.

Hi, everyone, and welcome to the podcast. Today's episode will be on the growth of ConTech and today we are joined by Javed Singha, co-founder and president of Fieldwire and Vivin Hegde, director of Hilti tech office. So welcome to the show.

 

Vivin

Thank you, Louisa, good to be on the Propcast.

 

Javed

Thanks for having us.

 

Louisa

Now, let me introduce you to our special guests. So we'll start with Javed, he's joining us from Massachusetts. And Javed is an entrepreneur and the co-founder of Fieldwire, a collaboration platform for construction where he leads go-to-market teams. Now prior to Fieldwire, Javed worked as a product manager at two start-ups and was a management consultant prior to grad school. Javed received a Master’s in Engineering from MIT and an MBA from Cornell University. For those who are not familiar yet with Fieldwire, get familiar as Fieldwire is the simplest way for construction companies to keep everyone organised on the job site. With it's easy to use mobile applications, Fieldwire saves each user up to one hour per day by enabling more efficient information sharing. Now, one hour a day is a huge amount of time, so Javed I'm eager to hear a little bit more later on the show how you do this. Fieldwire is used in over how many projects worldwide now?

 

Javed

We just broke one million projects.

 

Louisa

Wow, okay so can’t wait to hear more how you've done that! So welcome. And now for Vivin’s introduction, who is also joining us today from San Francisco. I met him a few months ago, one of my CREtech digital Brella events and we just had a chat about the market and he kindly introduced me to the Fieldwire team a few months ago, and we've just been touching base ever since and talking about the growth of ConTech. Now the Vivin’s role is slightly unusual and we'll hear a bit more about it later. But he fundamentally leaves Hilti’s scouting and corporate venturing arm across North America and has a huge focus on New Age technologies. Now, these technologies can be robotics, IoT, AI, VI, it completely varies but it's all within the construction space.

 

And those who don't know who Hilti are, there's something like 30,000 staff worldwide and they are the world leader, providing high quality innovative and specialised tools, providing systems and software based solutions for professional user. And they're massive. So if you don't know about them, definitely look them up. Vivin is deeply immersed in the construction tech ecosystem and helps multiple start-ups, firms and accelerators as an investor, board member, advisor and mentor. And previously he led sales and strategy teams at both Hilti and McKinsey across multiple geographies worldwide. And impressively Vivin is a trained mechanical engineer and holds a Finance MBA by education, and has briefly dabbled in investment banking at Deutsche Bank before joining McKinsey. I love how you can dabble in something like that, most people would dream to get there, but very impressive nonetheless. But let's get started the questions, thank you both for joining. Why don't we start with Javed you can go first. How did you get into construction tech? Talk me through it.

 

Javed

Yes, so in my case it was pretty lucky to be honest, all credit goes to my co-founder for getting me into the construction software arena. He was a civil engineer by trade, and had approached me about founding Fieldwire, we'd worked together at a previous company, Ubisoft. And he presented to me and it made a ton of sense for me. I hadn't come from the industry, but having some knowledge of supply chain engineering at a high level of made sense. But probably more importantly, when I was a product manager in a couple start-ups, I had been really dependent on software like Jira, to run our product and engineering teams. And essentially, as my co-founder was explaining it, we were basically just going to be a physical version of Jira. So helping people instead of just build in software, we can actually help build whole buildings. And so to me it made a ton of sense, we did some research to see that it really was a there was a lack of solution in the market for it, and we just burned the ships and went for it.

 

Louisa

Alright, well seems to have gone pretty well so far. And now Vivin, what about you? You have a background in finance, engineering, now corporate venture, how did you get into this space?

 

Vivin

Just like Javed, happenstance, so it wasn't planned to be this way. Back in early 2010, I joined Hilti and that was mostly because it was an industrial company. It was in construction, but it was an industrials company. And I have a background in industrials as a mechanical engineer, even in McKinsey I spent all my seven years working on industrial projects, whether it's construction, manufacturing, and so on. And Hilti gave me the exposure to construction quite considerably. Being part of the strategy team, being part of the sales team, visiting 10 job sites every single day, selling some of those tools as well.

 

So it was a very exciting opportunity when I joined Hilti. And three, four years back our CFO actually approached me and he said, Vivin this is super interesting, there's so many changes that are happening in this space and we don't think we have enough visibility into this space. And we want to set up an arm where we look at emerging tech, we partner with the ecosystem, help them grow. But also make sure that Hilti’s vision is very much in line with what's happening on the job side and what customers want. And that's how I set up this office in North America along with my colleague, and it's been an amazing experience. So I wouldn't say I am one of the experts in the space, but I'm still learning. So there's, there's a ton of learning that's happening and this is a fantastic time to be part of this ecosystem.

 

Louisa

Yes, I think for Hilti to make a move and invest in a space of business that large, it's pretty impressive. There's so many other big businesses who are always nervous to make that investment or don't know where to start. Now, talk to me about how did you first cross paths? Maybe Vivin this is a question for you, as you introduce Javed and I.

 

Vivin

Yes, so Hilti was dabbling in this space. So when we are looking at entering the ConTech space and staying close to the ecosystem, Fieldwire was actually a first investment in the space. So you can even say they are our gateway in terms of entering the space from a learning perspective, from a start-up collaboration perspective. And that's how I met Javed, and this is how we also started our interactions and ever since we've been working together.

 

Louisa

And now Javed, this is the perfect time to talk us through your product, how do you work with Hilti? And how do you make the whole process a lot smoother?

 

Javed

Yes there's a couple aspects there. So in terms of Fieldwire, we're basically a field management solution, allowing people to record track and share information more efficiently on site. And so that's everything around scheduling tasks, being able to access all your drawings, BIM viewer, you can record any information that's occurring on site, being able to have real time communication around it, and then generate any forms and reports to make sure it's well documented. And so we luckily had met up with the Hilti team on one of their trips to San Francisco. And we happened to be working with them actually before that, we were working with the PDCS laser scanning solution to get pre installed actually on some of their hardware. And it was a really cool opportunity to get to work closely with them as we always looked up to Hilti. They’re a 75 year old plus company, still family owned. And when you look at the scale that they operate at, when we were trying to get our fifth salesperson up and running, they have a team of 30,000 and you say, oh wow, they've obviously figured out a thing or two.

 

And so we looked at the world of where could we end up one day, and one theme still plays in is, I think there'll be a collision between hardware and software down the line. And looking at some of the software solutions that Hilti had been working on. It seems like an interesting opportunity to partner up and just share learnings. There's not a ton of deep integration between the products but there's a lot of interest in trying to help the industry be more efficient on site. And so where we get to trade some notes occasionally on how we look to do distribution and then where we'd like to learn from Hilti on how they did do distribution. And so it's been great to have Vivin and the entire Hilti team as supporters for the last couple years.

 

Louisa

Yes, that's quite the client to have, taking on Hilti as one of your first clients is quite the beast, isn't it? Vivin from your experience, how has it helped the Hilti construction process and some of your teams? Does Fieldwire work cross your teams globally as well?

 

Vivin

So, Fieldwire is more the software that our customers use than what Hilti uses directly. For us Hilti has traditionally been a hardware player, so our products have mostly been focusing on hardware. But as construction is digitising, more and more of the mindshare from the customers is more into software, and that's where Fieldwire comes in. So it's basically enabling our customers to be more productive in some of the most important topics. And also when it comes to the workforce, typically, this has all been done through pen and paper. And now we're able to do this digitally, which is bringing huge efficiency gains to the market. So for us, it's a learning experience, because this is not something that we've done in the past. It also helps strengthen our relationships with our customers when we're talking about things that are most important to them. And rather than just talking about the hardware legacy that we have, this also fits in with a few other topics that we're working on, when we talk about robotics that will bring into market, or exoskeletons, so bringing new solutions and software helps us be looked at as a newly innovative player. And that's where our partnership has been so helpful.

 

Louisa

And Javed, I'd love you to elaborate on your experience of implementing your product, it's construction, in general the real estate industry is fairly archaic, I think huge moves are being made but it can't be a smooth, easy process, especially in the earlier days of Fieldwire. What challenges have you come up against and overcome?

 

Javed

Yes, I think you touched on an important point, which is getting software to be adopted on site is the core goal. And we generally have a simplistic framework we discuss when we talk to customers around, does it get adopted? Does it work at scale? And does it generate a positive ROI? In the early days, when we founded Fieldwire,  people weren't even using the Cloud necessarily, and we talked to a ton of people that were like, ‘oh, our team will never use mobile device on site.’ I'm very happy to see that trend changed very quickly in our founding years, too. But essentially, what we tried to do was build a product that could get up and running in a couple of minutes. And I think building something that was easy to use and even I tried to apply a lot of our consumer product development knowledge from gaming for instance, into building the onboarding flow Fieldwire. And if you come from gaming, you realise no one has the patience to read a manual before you do anything.

 

And you try to have, a concept of like progressive disclosure and your product where you can see there's more and more power as you dive into it. But you don't overwhelm someone with hundreds of buttons when they log in. And so we try to put these things together to just allow us to gain field level adoption, and to actually try to get on site without having to go top down through CIOs and the IT teams. And that worked exceedingly well in the early days, and I think the majority of our largest customers from Clark Construction, to Ellis Don and others, they actually all got adopted bottom up, we've changed and now been able to sell more top down with companies like Power Design, but we have distributed out product to literally 1000’s of customers, and we've probably met less than 1% of them. And that's just through the power of digital distribution and building a seamless onboarding program. With that said, we still make sure we have an entire team of construction professionals on staff that work with people to make sure that we incorporate their workflows effectively. And we can deploy things easily but I can table that if interested later.

 

Louisa

Yes, I definitely want to go into that a bit more. And you mentioned about going in at bottom up, and it changes from business to business, product to product, country to country. A lot of feedback that I've had, it's all about top down selling, you’ve got to get the senior management, whoever is the boss man or woman on board so that they want to invest in this product, which Vivin you must work with these senior stakeholders. Vivin what's your experience of getting the business to try new technologies, and I guess educate them and push them forward into any form of digitalisation?

 

Vivin

It's a process and I can talk about this from a Hilti perspective and also from a customer perspective. So we are a European Conservator manufacturer, so in terms of brand image being important, we have to be very mindful of what we bring to our customers. And being a being of a hardware legacy, getting it right the first time has always been part of a philosophy in the past. That means you don't want to make any mistakes when you're doing deployments. Which is completely different approach to what you use for software, where you want to be agile, you want to get customer input, and you want to fail fast. So it's a little bit of a cultural change when you're trialling new technology and bringing that in the organisation. Also, because it distracts from your other shorter term priorities, because innovation by definition is something that you're looking out for the longer term. So what you have to do is you have to make sure you're aligned on the topics that are most critical. So as long as the incentives are aligned, you get some traction. As long as you don't bring too much change at the same time, it's helpful for large organisations because it's digestible. If you want to bring change, but if you try to completely break the system, then you'll find much more resistance, right? The immune response is very strong in large corporates. So you have to manage that as you ramp up. That's also true for our industry in general, construction and real estate in general has been slow moving. So it's helpful to have solutions like Fieldwire for example, who are not breaking the system, you're actually using a current analogue system or paper based system and converting into digital. So from a process perspective, they're still doing what they're doing. They're just doing it more efficiently. So you have to pick the right battles, at least initially and once you reach a certain scale, then automatically you can move to the next pace and be much more disruptive.

 

Louisa

And I guess, to get people on board, it's also helpful like Javed mentioned earlier, he's got actual construction people working within this business. And Javed, your tagline is ‘the job site management solution built by crafts people for crafts people’. So you have a mixture of technologists and construction people, and probably various other people, different experiences and backgrounds within your business. How do you hire your team, because construction tech is something quite alien to a lot of our listeners, lots of them might be founders as well or even real estate people. How do you strike the balance?

 

Javed

I think it's an important one. And we really strive to find people that are builders in whatever capacity that is, it can be with a hammer or a keyboard. And so a good portion of our company, like 50% are probably engineers by trade, our entire what we call customer success or client services team are from the construction industry. So it's people that have worn boots on sites before and have experienced these pains first-hand. As well as I think the majority of our product team also has either come from industry or has come from a construction tech background as well. And so we just find it really important to be able to build in-service customers to actually have people that fundamentally know the industry inside and out. And so I think you can go in and have empathy and learn from your customers. And I think it's a great industry where people have literally sent me 20 page wireframe product suggestions. But I think if you can short circuit some of those learnings and bring on folks that have come from the industry, you just are able to communicate and work with them in a much more effective manner. And that's been core to our company.

 

Louisa

Yes, so we are hiring for some other construction tech companies, and where there’s massive skill shortage in the markets, people who have the construction experience but also say the SaaS sales experience, I think they are in high demand. So it's as this industry grows, hopefully there'll be more of a surplus of them. And Javed, I'm sure you feel the same way!

 

Javed

It's a small Venn diagram, the overlap there of people with those two backgrounds but I think what we found is, we can bring on a project engineers, field engineers, and integrate them exceedingly well and turn it actually into our bench, where people come in and join Merrill's construction team. She's our VP of the construction team, and then have moved on into operations, into product into marketing, into different roles. And again, it's just a great entry point to allow folks that may not have a SaaS background, basically make that jump into an organisation like ours, get a broad swath of experience and then decide do they want to stay in that type of role or branch out and it's been a phenomenal theatre pool for us.

 

Louisa

Yes, that's so refreshing. I did a webinar the other day and it was called ‘Is PropTech the career option for you?’ and I had people from VC, I had them from the consultancies, I had some from a start-up. And we were basically talking to the traditional real estate people, also from marketing, hospitality, all sorts, finance, and they were saying you might not know what options are in the built environment or what ones are coming up, but there are so many. So whether you're a product manager by background or say somebody who has no real estate experience and just straight SaaS, there's so many different roles coming up. And other businesses, say at the stage yours are, there's often a lot of learning and training that start-ups consider doing. So it's really refreshing to hear you say that. Now, I'd love to hear a little bit more from both of you and Vivin maybe you can go first, what changes have you seen in adoption in Contech across countries, and feel free to elaborate on it and maybe give some examples.

 

Vivin

So I think that adoption is actually quite different across geographies and this is for a few reasons. One is the labour cost itself. So in areas where the labour cost is high, you will see higher adoption of construction tech start-ups. For example, US, Canada, Australia and Japan, you will see the adoption is higher because the labour rate cost is higher. The second is the labour shortages which are happening, in Japan for example, has one of the highest adoption of robotics in the world because of the labour shortage issues that they're facing. And then the cultural and regulatory issues which come into play here, for example, Europe has traditionally been focused on environment and safety and so on, so forth, and modular construction, as a trend has been there for the last 30/40 years. So there are geographical events which come into this. Asia today is actually very diverse in the sense that Asia, if you look at China and India, the big cities, they adopt the same technologies that are adopted across the world. But if you go to the smaller cities and smaller construction projects, the adoption of technology is very, very low. So the previous factors which fall into this, if I were to bucket where the adoptions highest, I would say North America is probably where it's the highest. And then you have Europe, and then you have the rest of the world. That's driven by all of these different traits. But one thing we've seen across the globe is the increase in adoption and that's happening rapidly. And we expect this to look very different five years from now, because even now compared to how it looked like in 2015/2016, I think there's a dramatic difference on the level of adoption of technology.

 

Louisa

And Javed from a founders perspective, what have you seen?

 

Javed

I'd say everything given a set is absolutely spot on. I think the only additional thing that we've noticed is, also somewhat the way that software gets adopted on site changes by geography. And so I think when you look at North America, things get adopted a lot more bottom up, I think it's just the cultural mentality of more the cowboy style of ‘I'm going to try something out’, I think. When you look at Europe, it's a little bit more in between. And then when you go to places like Asia and the Middle East software's usually selected much more top down still. And so I think we're starting to see that change, but that's still I think an aspect of how the decisions being made, but also as we've been talking about, it's somewhat an aspect of cost. And so the field isn't going to select a solution that costs almost the same as salaries in certain geographies, that would have to come top down. And so I think these are some of the different trends we've seen when we try to look at implementing and getting the software adopted globally. But I'd say it's been easier than we would have guessed early on. And I think that the thing that we're trying to do now is, while supporting a global customer base of over 100 countries, is making sure that we have more offices so that we can do more 24 hour support. So it was really important for us to open up a Paris office not too long ago, just because we have so many folks over there that are very difficult to communicate with from an SF time timeframe. We don't have a ton of overlap, so that gave us a little bit more ability to have 24 hour coverage.

 

Louisa

That's interesting. The French market is a tough one to get into but also I just know that from the legislation. On another podcast, I was talking about what countries, and it's so impressive Javed, 100 countries to have a date, congratulations on that by the way, but there's certain countries where it's a lot easier to launch like Canada as there's certain things the government's put in place so it’s easier to launch, and the Middle East, in Dubai the local government is now putting making it super easy for start-ups to launch. They really want to attract what they’re calling “the new middle class”, so it's not just finance people that go there. I guess they've already lost since COVID a lot of retail, which was one of their biggest incomes and tourism is basically gone. So they're now looking at different ways of making it more attractive and easier for tech start-ups to launch there. So congrats on your growth. Now we’ve spoken about trends and changes. What about and this is, are I ask both to look into your crystal ball and not say it's factual, what about future predictions for this space? We spoke about growth, which is no doubt hopefully going to continue to happen. Any other areas or changes you think we're going to see Vivin?

 

Vivin

We'll see plenty of changes, I would say we are very early in the tech adoption in construction. So we are starting to put some of the foundational blocks, as I said earlier what we are right now doing is changing some of the analogue processes to digital processes. So once that is done, that actually helps us get to the next step of applying AI to some of these processes of breaking down the data silos between the different stakeholders today that exists. And once you break down that you can actually look at optimizing schedule, optimizing jobsite practices, you can talk about deployment of robots, you can talk about having, actual living digital twins in the job site. So I think the next 5/10 years will be exciting in the space. And if I use a baseball analogy, I would say we are probably in the first or second innings of we are very early in the process. So there are multiple changes coming in the future.

 

Louisa

That's exciting, isn't it? Javed, what about you, any prediction? Also, what are the further growth plans for your companies? Well, you're already in 100 countries!

 

Javed

Well, we're still not quite Hilti size so we have a long ways to go there before we can truly map the globe! But I would say, I think what we’ve been talking about from a trend standpoint is spot on. My guess is we'll see some additional consolidation of some of the smaller players and a move away from point solutions to platforms. I think, when I look back just five years ago, there was a real push for a “I need a product to do X” and Vivin touched on it, is it's great to now capture that data. But having it all in one place that you can start making better recommendations and learnings from his work, is where we're going to see the market pushing. And so I think that's an area we're trying to get out in front of as well, which is trying to have a broader platform based offering. And so there's a lot more to come from ourselves.

 

Louisa

I'm looking forward to that Javed. Now guys, the final part of the podcast, this is new to season 5, I’m trying to make it slightly more structured and on brand. It's called the LMRE side. So L lessons learned, M mention anyone, a product or service shout out, R if you have any regrets but hopefully a positive spin on it, and E what are you most excited about the future of PropTech? So Javed, do you want to go for the first one, lessons learned?

 

Javed

Yes, I think the biggest lesson I learned was especially when coming out to Silicon Valley, was to unlearn most of the things I did in my MBA program to be honest. So I think an MBA is great, it teaches you how to think about things strategically. I think start-ups are about 95% execution to 5% strategy sometimes. And I think I had spent a lot of time building presentations and I remember one of my presidents at Ubisoft telling me I think in my fourth week, “Okay, let's both agree you know how to make nice presentations, but in the future just come with a bullet points, and you'll save yourself a lot of time.” And so I think there's a lot of things that I had to relearn. And I think one suggestion I would have for anybody is really taking ownership of your career and taking the path less travelled, let's say. I know I made some decisions to take less pay or less titles sometimes to make sure I got to learn a lot more and to take on far more responsibilities I wouldn't have gotten otherwise. And I think that really was helpful. I think, for instance, going and trying to do product management in the gaming space is not an area the typical MBA thinks about doing. But you get to run $100 million products fresh out of school, which you probably wouldn't get anywhere else. And so I think sometimes looking for opportunities that are less normal, even though they came with less pay out of the gate, definitely paid off in terms of being able to learn a lot more and get to where I am in my career,

 

Louisa

I'm sure and you have had quite the career and looking forward to what comes up in the next few years and more. Vivin, what about you? Talk us through what's the biggest lesson you've learned so far today?

 

Vivin

So, the one thing I've learned is there's no cookie cutter recipe for innovation. And the reason I say that is when we think about innovation, we talk about disruption. We talk about breaking down everything that exists and trying to come up with something new. As we spend time in construction, and we've actually looked at the stakeholders and looked at what works, what doesn't, we've actually learned innovation doesn't have to break down everything at least initially. You have to deploy innovation in a way that it is also implemented well. In this case, innovation is just building the foundation and bringing efficiency gains before you think about applying AI to add to a job site, which optimizes everything right. So it's about being flexible. And it's about deploying the right solution at the right time for the right stakeholders. And that is not how everybody thinks sometimes. So it's also a learning experience for us when we've looked at this.

 

Louisa

Thank you for that. And okay, so now anyone you want to mention or maybe a product, you can't say your own product, or someone you'd like to give a shout out to?

 

Javed

Probably give a shout out at this moment to my VP of operations B, he's been super critical to the company, taking on a ton of additional responsibilities over the last couple of weeks. And so just say thank you to him.

 

Louisa

If you're listening, I hope you enjoyed that. And Vivin what about you?

 

Vivin

I would like to give a shout out to two of my mentors. One of them was with Hilti, he was the CFO who actually taught me for this role. So thanking him for the trust that he imposed, and also the vision he had in terms of helping us set this up. And the second shout out I would like to give is to one of my other mentors who's just taking over as the CEO of Hilti starting next year, and it was the two of them who actually saw the vision for this office, the fact that we need to move in this direction, and pushing the company in a different direction from where we are going earlier. So huge kudos for them for the foresight, and also the backing that we've received over the last few years.

 

Louisa

Awesome, thank you for that. Okay, now the big old R. Any regrets in your career? Now Javid, hopefully it's not doing your MBA!

 

Javed

Hey, everything is built to a good spot. And so to be honest, I don't know if I have a ton of regrets given I'm pretty happy where things have turned out from a personal standpoint. I think professionally if there's anything, it's probably should have done a better job of hiring at different stages in the company to be honest, for people that were the right fit. I think that would be a professional one that if I could get a do over on a couple of those, where we just would look to bring in people that fit for the exact moment for where we were in the company. And so that would be the only one I could think of that sometimes I feel bad for with sometimes the turnover in the company now. But otherwise, generally pretty happy with my personal career. But that would be my major area of what I would what I would do differently. And we've learned a lot from hiring in the past that we tried to apply now, but that was probably the only thing I can think of.

 

Louisa

Yes, and I can echo that. And I'm going through the same thing, recruitments always naturally high turnover but also from seeing from our clients and every start up experiences, it's like teething problems and a huge thing that we're trying to implement. I think start-ups are so good at doing it way better doing than big consultancies and agencies, and maybe because they're so big and it's too late to implement. It's so difficult creating the right culture, growing globally and keeping everyone happy. So teething pains, but from what I've heard it's all good things. And Vivin, what about you, any regrets?

 

Vivin

I wouldn’t say regrets in the sense that I'm happy with where I am, but there are few things I could probably do a little bit differently. I could have entered the space earlier. This is so exciting, I would have loved to spend more time in Contech. So it's still early, so I'm happy about that. The second thing that I would think to take more risks, so it's always easy to be safe and comfortable. I would like to be more uncomfortable more of the time. And that's something I'm still working on but I think that would be a good thing for me to have done, even in the past. So take more risks.

 

Louisa

I should have put you on the spot with a weird old question. Okay, this is the last question, and what are you most excited about the future of PropTech? We asked a similar question, but it could not even be relevant to construction tech.

 

Javed

I think what Vivin talked about earlier in terms of the trends is really what's the most exciting is, I haven't seen this much innovation in the construction space since we founded the company. I know even as an organization, we're starting to get to innovate again, hit our own inflection point. But I think when you look at the market, it's just really impressive. A lot of the companies that are spinning up right now, how interested the industry is in adopting tech is just super exciting. And I think it's great that it's getting the attention that deserves.

 

Louisa

And Vivin the closing question, what are you most excited about?

 

Vivin

Robotics and AI. So what are these trends are going to be mega trends are for construction, and property in general. And we are at a tipping point. Right now there is interest, all of the start-ups in the space are still super early. But in the next few years, now that the foundation has been laid, these could bring dramatic efficiency gains in construction. So I'm really excited to see how this shapes up in the next few years.

 

Louisa

I feel like robotics and AI and terrifies a lot of people, so it'll be interesting to learn more about this space. So maybe that's a good idea for my next podcast. And thank you both for joining me from well from across the Atlantic, and unfortunately we’ve come to the end of the show. But please let us audience know the best way to connect to each of you and Vivin, why don't you go first.

 

Vivin

So best way to connect with me is on LinkedIn, Vivin Hegde, or on email vivin.hegde@hilti.com

 

Louisa

And Javed?

 

Javed

LinkedIn is probably one of the best as well, Javed Singha on LinkedIn and just email me javed@fieldwire.com.

 

Louisa

Awesome. Thank you both for joining me on the podcast, I'm looking forward to catching up with you after the show. Thank you for joining us this week on the Propcast and a big thanks to our special guests. Make sure you visit our website www.lmre.co.uk where you can subscribe to our show. Or you'll find us on iTunes and Spotify were all good content is found, while you’re at it if you found value in the show, we'd appreciate if you could rate and review us on iTunes or if you could simply spread the word. Be sure to tune in next Tuesday, and I’ll catch you later.

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