You may have noticed some gaps in shopping malls lately. Brick-and-mortar stores are taking a beating as more and more consumers turn to online shopping. Store chains are not throwing in the towel, however. Many are using next-generation technology to appeal to shoppers, and that means projects. The July PM Network takes a look at what’s in store for retailers, including virtual reality, augmented reality and artificial intelligence. Communication with stakeholders, especially store employees, is essential for these projects to succeed. Filip Fischier, strategic initiative portfolio manager with Ikea Group, explains in an interview how his organization, with 340 stores in 28 countries, is integrating technology such as consumer-designed kitchens across its global footprint.
To the reader who wrote me that PM Network should have less on construction projects and more on IT/technology projects, we offer this compromise: An April cover story on cutting-edge technology taking hold in the world of building buildings. According to the story, 3-D building information modeling (BIM) is a prized tool for a new generation of construction project managers who use it to improve communication and reduce risks. The next step for many forwarding-looking firms is moving to 4-D BIM—incorporating schedule data, and then all the way to 5-D, which includes cost data.
Other innovative construction tools include using drones and GIS to speed surveying and make it more accurate; taking advantage of Internet of Things technology to track performance data for equipment and materials; and employing self-healing concrete, nanometals, preassembled modules and 3-D printing to cut costs and increase quality.
Shifting gears to the technology behind PM Network magazine, please use the comments to tell us how you prefer to read PM Network and why: In print? Via our digipub on a laptop? Digipub on tablet? On mobile phone? Or do you fancy our PM Network app on your mobile phone or tablet? Thanks for sharing your preference!