Claudia Thijs is the Director of Global Field Marketing at OpenSpace, where she bridges sales and marketing and leads a talented team of marketers who are helping more builders discover the benefits of reality capture. MR: Thanks so much for spending some time with us, Claudia. Let’s get to know you a bit better!…
Groundbreak 2023: Our recap and conference highlights
September 26th, 2023
Last week, I wrapped up my sixth Groundbreak show, and I must say that it was probably my favorite one yet (and I didn’t even get to catch the Foreigner show!).
There’s so much to take away from this show, both through the sessions and the conversations had in our booth. While there were many sessions I wanted to attend, I found myself with a bit of FOMO, not wanting to leave the booth in fear of missing one of those good conversations with attendees and customers.
This year, we had a lot to talk about in the booth. In addition to sharing the new features of OpenSpace BIM+, we debuted a new integration point with Procore’s Punch Lists, allowing users to utilize OpenSpace Field Notes to pass punch list items along to their projects in Procore. We also launched Timelapse Videos, a new feature in OpenSpace Capture that enables customers to produce and share timelapse videos of their projects, either from a fixed perspective or as part of a rotating 360° view, at the click of a button.
From Procore’s perspective, I saw a big emphasis on risk mitigation in numerous sessions, and this is something we also focus on here at OpenSpace. Comprehensive documentation of projects has proven to be invaluable when it comes to damage on the jobsite and filing insurance claims. We’re also hearing a lot more frequently that safety teams are utilizing the OpenSpace platform to help track, correct, and train on safety issues. I spoke with several people in the booth who asked about this. One, in particular, noted that as a superintendent, his company requires its teams to make a minimum number of safety observations each month; it’s one of the company’s KPIs, and it’s tied to comp plans. He noted that OpenSpace allows him and his team to capture those observations in real time and take action immediately.
Data was another often highlighted topic throughout the show. In years past, Groundbreak sessions have posed the question, “We’re collecting all this data… but now what do we do with it?” This year continued to build on that story of how the industry is able to capitalize on data to improve efficiencies, whether it be visualization of data to support collaboration or maximizing the value of connected data to drive decisions.
We also saw that DEI initiatives and mental health remained at the forefront of the conversation, with several sessions focused on the importance—and benefits—of cultivating a diverse employee population. And, as we must all continue to acknowledge, construction is among the top industries to struggle with mental health disorders. Closing keynote speaker, Michael Phelps, spoke on the importance of mental health advocacy and coming together to enable change.
On a more social note, it’s always great to connect with teammates and industry partners. On Tuesday evening after the show, we partnered with our friends at Document Crunch (coming in with some good Procore partnership news), Briq and Genda, to host an architecture-themed boat tour along the Chicago River. While rain tried to put a damper on the event (damper, lol), we had a good group of people who didn’t let a little rain get in the way of their fun. Our tour guide was very engaging, and we learned all about some of Chicago’s most famous buildings and historical events—including how the city reversed the river in 1900. Spoiler alert: it involved a boozy attempt with dynamite (if only there were someone there to capture that safety observation with OpenSpace!).
And finally, before we part, I will share that one lucky person from Three Rivers was the proud winner of our OpenSpace prize pack consisting of a Yeti Tundra 45 cooler, a free jobsite capture, and some sweet OpenSpace swag. Congratulations! Be sure to follow along on our LinkedIn page as we continue to journey to new shows and events.
Until next year, Groundbreak.