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3 min read

JGC’s EPC Transformation: Lessons from a DX Superstar

JGC’s EPC Transformation: Lessons from a DX Superstar

Recipients of a recent Advanced Work Packaging (AWP) project award, JGC are no strangers to headlining the digital transformation (DX) of complex industrial projects. The significant JGC Group have committed to meeting challenges for a better world through its engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) business one project at a time. They have been doing so, to great effect, through digitizing information and digitalizing workflows for improved construction execution efficiencies.


Why did JGC embark on digitalLY transforming their EPC business?

JGC strive to “enhance planetary health.” This is pursued, in part, through their construction execution arm by implementing a robust DX journey that prioritizes sustainability. As their EPC business operates largely in industrial sectors that aren’t exactly known for their digital maturity, this is a laudable and progressive goal.

Global construction has a significant impact on the planetary health that JGC care about and, as such, they are well-placed to mitigate construction-related emissions. Streamlining workflows, in short, reduces energy inputs and minimizes embodied carbon of materials and Assets, both of which reduce the environmental footprints of built structures and industrial sectors.

JGC’s reform to accelerate sustainability-related digital transformation in construction execution was distilled into 5 overarching goals:

  1. Reduce cost overruns and project delays through a paper-to-digital transformation.
  2. Minimize time lost and, hence, increase productivity through digital work packaging solutions and optimal allocation of resources.
  3. Eliminate manual processes in their construction management systems.
  4. Provide transparency through all project phases, through a centralized, cloud-based database.
  5. Support an agile future, including remote oversight of all construction execution projects, and all phases therein, with an aim to increase the sophistication of their digital tools.


Digital Transformation According to JGC

Owing to the scope of JCG’s EPC projects and portfolio at large, a digital system robust enough to manage swaths of Asset and project data was non-negotiable. A centralized system that acts as a single source of truth via the cloud ensures that project teams have access to the same, real-time information from both site and office. 

The importance of data access, and ease of access, cannot be underestimated. It allows for constraint-free planning, in advance, following AWP principles that focus on efficient pathways to goal through left-to-right workflows.  

JGC’s EPC DX strategy followed a pyramid approach, as follows:



This stepwise process started with the foundational digitalization of information. Simply: they began to eliminate paper from their key project workflows such as work packs, opting instead for the ease and functionality of centralized cloud-based software. Upon being collated into a centralized EPC database for sharing, JGC next focused on tag management.





Benefits of JGC’s Digital Transformation

The benefits of JCG’s digitally transformed EPC construction execution were measurable and impressive. Onboarding a centralized single source of truth to enable remote management of their construction workflows resulted in the following:

  • Reduced time spent on test packages, work packs and inspections. For example, the combined time spent by supervisors, engineers and inspectors on piping inspection test packages went from 82 minutes to 22 minutes per test – a reduction of seventy percent, or one person-hour per test package. When tens of thousands of hours are spent on these workflows, the scale of economy speaks for itself.
  • Improved productivity of workers and inspectors. Thirty-five percent of time spent was saved due to a reduction in human error. All inspection data became centrally stored and accessible, remotely, in real-time, which eliminated the unnecessary correcting of, mining for and sharing information.
  • Significant reduction in capital expenditure of construction execution related to the reduced time needed to create test packages for inspections and progress reporting. For one oil refinery expansion, alone, the reduction in person hours equated to a savings of over USD 3 million.
  • More streamlined communication with both internal and external partners owing to a centralized and remotely accessible database.
  • Improved forecasting ability made possible through real-time information upload via mobile devices and 3D visual status updates.


Lessons Learned from JGC’s EPC Digital Transformation

JGC’s pyramid DX approach adopts increasing levels of sophistication, allowing both end users and the organization at large the time and resource to adapt to new ways of working. A solutions-based approach such as this is a good idea, particularly for complex projects and when teams are entrenched in ways of working. Bringing on piecemeal solutions that address one problem at a time such as managing materials or streamlining work packs generate a bit of momentum without overwhelming people with change.

Changing minds on the ground, convincing people to embrace emerging technologies and methods as the new de facto standard, is a notorious stumbling block in the adoption and upscaling of DX in EPC settings and, arguably, in any DX endeavor. JGC's stepwise approach gives workers time to adjust, as well as time to experience the newly realized efficiencies in their workflows and, hence, in their enhanced performance. It is then that workers become agents of change, enabling the uptake of new software solutions in a way that pave way for upscaling toward continuous DX.



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