Pre-Conference Workshop Day Monday, September 21

All Timings Listed as follows: EST | PST

Series 1 – Kick-Starting Your Quality Program

2.30 | 11.30 – Harnessing the Core Foundations of a Good Quality Program to Establish a New Protocol for Your Company


Quality is by no means standardized industry-wide and many companies are still in the early stages of defining their Quality program. However, for those firms that have been through this transition, there are many lessons learned and tools developed to help you write your own Quality playbook. In this session, our workshop leaders will walk you through their journeys and ensure you leave with the tools to implement a new framework with your team.
  • Underlining the value of good Quality Management and how this can be most effectively articulated to peers to gain their buy-in and trust
  • Creating a framework for a good Quality Plan: What needs to be considered on a project by project basis to meet minimum Quality requirements and can be a baseline for all teams?
  • Developing documentation for your project teams that effectively demonstrates good Quality planning and provides a strong framework from which to execute Quality: How does this differ from a General Contractor to Trade Partner?

4.00 | 1.00 – Assessing the Existing Culture & Conditions in Your Organization to Tailor Your Quality Program

  • Chad Dorgan Past President, CQEC Board of Governors
  • Scott West VP Quality Management, Granite Construction


While there are foundational elements of a good Quality program that can be adopted industry-wide, so much of what makes a Quality program excel comes from what that means for your company. Not only can this make it easier to get a new program off the ground, it is also the critical factor in getting peers to buy into why Quality is important to them.

This workshop will look at:

  • Overviewing different styles of Quality Management that have been successfully adopted by Construction teams: How can you refine the principles and applications for your organization?
  • Understanding your baseline tools and protocols that can be harnessed to develop the Quality program without significant additional investment
  • Highlighting ways to engage leadership to streamline the introduction of a new program and build excitement to culturally get the program off the ground
  • Exploring ways to best resource Quality with existing staff: How do I ensure that program execution is manageable and can effectively identify Quality Champions to reinforce our message?

5.30 | 2.30 – Harnessing Tried & Tested Techniques to Influence Culture Change Step-by-Step

  • Loan Ngô Senior Director of Quality , Mortenson


Influencing culture change is one of the hardest battles to embed any new initiative, as we have seen time and time again in recent years with the likes of safety and prefabrication. That said, with incremental increases in buy-in, more and more teams are seeing adoption increase. So how do you get there? Join us in this workshop to explore:

  • Defining cultural stages that a company must go through to cement Quality as part of your core values and engaging the right champion(s) for that journey
  • Designing and building company-wide initiatives to deliver results and advance the culture: How can you monitor what is working to minimize the risk of fall back?
  • Mapping out a timeline for change and exploring options to accelerate progress to the next milestone

Series 2 - Quality in Design

2.30 | 11.30 – Developing a QA/QC Program for Your Design Firm

  • Mark Walsh Global Director of Technical Design, Perkins and Will
  • Carol Post Chief Quality Assurance Officer, Thornton Tomasetti


While technical programs are now being harnessed by larger design firms around the country, we still have a long way to go to ensure they become commonplace in the design industry. That said, with the rise in educated clients comes the need to formalize Quality and consistency in order to win more work, and so this session will dive into the weeds of what is needed to develop your regional or national Quality guidelines.

  • Outlining the business case for a Quality program in a design firm and how we can best integrate our leaders with project teams to improve buy-in with technical programs
  • Overviewing an effective organizational structure for technical leadership in the firm that supports geographical and market specific variability, whilst maintaining standardization
  • Developing the tools to guide your design professionals: What are the foundational documents and practices that must exist to formalize Quality in Design and increase consistency of work going out of the door, and how can this be scaled over time?
  • Assessing ways to drive accountability for conducting technical reviews and incorporating feedback into design sets when not part of the current workflow

4.00 | 1.00 – Developing & Mentoring Design Professionals to Increase Technical Knowledge Firm-Wide

  • Carol Post Chief Quality Assurance Officer, Thornton Tomasetti


It is no secret that the US education system for architects and engineers prioritizes design and creativity over more technical skills of putting a building together. However, this means that design companies themselves are having to do more and more to raise technical standards in house and ensure the quality of every project going out of the door.

Therefore, this workshop is dedicated to:

  • Analyzing the common gaps in the skillset of less experienced A/E professionals when it comes to constructability
  • Benchmarking best practices for improving constructability knowledge company-wide: How can we develop training programs, mentoring and technical guidance to make technical information easily accessible?
  • Sharing the impact of poor design quality in the field and encouraging design professionals to forge stronger relationships with construction partners to find a way to strengthen quality in design
  • Identifying champions within the practice to help drive engagement with technical design: How can we best leverage these
    individuals to improve buy-in to our programs and be facilitators for knowledge sharing?

5.30 | 2.30 – Developing Quality Assurance & Control Workflows With BIM Today! What About Tomorrow?

  • Nathan Tuttle Director of Technical Standards, JCJ Architecture


The adoption of BIM is still growing in our industry, with one end of the spectrum non-adopters, and the other pushing the frontier to begin contracting with BIM as a project deliverable. However, this change is going to revolutionize the way architects and engineers check and validate model content before progressing to construction. This workshop will take you through the experiences of one team as they made this transition and how they developed new workflows to ensure constructability and validity of their 3D collaborative world.

  • Mapping out the transition from traditional drawings and PDF documents to working in the model and how we can better upskill and allocate our people to be able to bring to life a more accurate design vision in the virtual platform
  • Assessing project standards used to control development in BIM and benchmarking key milestones to validate quality of the model
  • Exploring the potential for automation to check model health and verify content from a QA/QC standpoint: What are the solutions that exist to help and how did we develop a workflow with the project team to effectively verify design development?
  • Harnessing lessons learned from initial projects to inform further development of BIM QA/QC workflows

Series 3 – Inspections & Testing

2.30 | 11.30 – Building an Inspections & Testing Plan to Effectively Plan, Schedule, & Minimize Project Delays


The Inspection and Test Plan (ITP) is a key tool for Quality Assurance, that not only establishes project expectations, but also aids communication and promotes collaborative working within the team. Therefore, it is critical we get this right.

Attend this workshop to walk away with the skills to:

  • Analyze project specific requirements, as prescribed by specifications and applicable building codes, to build out an effective ITP with field leaders
  • Evaluate code minimums and conflicts to effectively plan for your project: How can we fairly evaluate what the minimum acceptable requirement is for this job to deliver to client expectations when unclear in project documents and official regulations?
  • Increase buy-in with project teams to schedule both initial and mandated inspections to verify work in place
  • Identify hold points in the project plan and ensure field teams implement these to minimize potential rework later down the line

4.00 | 1.00 – Understanding the Ins & Outs of Materials Testing From Lab to Field

  • Steve Black Senior Quality Support Manager, Power Construction


Whilst materials testing is commonplace for many construction projects, it is still something that causes us all headaches. Whether experienced with specific testing requirements or not, each project is unique and requires a different approach to materials testing that you and your team must figure out. However, get this right, and you could see significant time and money savings.

This workshop will take a deep dive into:

  • Overviewing testing options of common critical materials and the benefits of each to determine the best test for your project
  • Exploring new technologies that are improving the way we conduct initial inspections in the field
  • Understanding some of the common logistical issues caused by field and lab inspections and how these can be mitigated in early planning
  • Improving relationships with external testing labs to better understand their requirements and timelines to build into your project plan

5.30 | 2.30 – Developing Your Building Enclosure Testing & Commissioning Plan


Enclosure failings remain one of the primary sources of rework and defects in commercial construction. Therefore, it is no surprise that for many, this has become one of the largest foci in recent years to improve in commercial construction. It requires time and financial investment up front to get it right, that many project partners still do not understand the value of.

Join this workshop to understand how you can bring best value to the testing of the building enclosure on your project as we look at:

  • Defining the business case for mock-ups and building enclosure testing to incentivize every project partner to buy-in and secure funding for mock-ups
  • Overviewing different kinds of mock-ups and when these can be most effectively implemented from project to project
  • Optimizing when mock-ups are conducted in the master schedule to minimize disruption and ensure maximum ROI
  • Minimizing waste post mock-up: Exploring ways to repurpose mock-up materials and harness lessons learned to maximize efficiency of the process

Series 4 – Impacting Company Culture & Protocols

2.30 | 11.30 – Driving Engagement & Retention in Quality Learning Programs

  • Lisa Nakamura VP Learning & Leadership, PJ Dick - Trumbull - Lindy Paving
  • Sara Sadek Corporate QAQC Manager, PJ Dick - Trumbull - Lindy Paving


With so many stakeholders throughout the company influencing success with Quality on our projects, a significant aspect of success is setting those people up with the skills and knowledge to confidently execute our programs.

Therefore, this workshop will be dedicated to:

  • Overviewing different approaches to creating company-wide training tools and initiatives that effectively engage operations teams and help raise the bar with various technical topics
  • Underlining how you can establish regular Quality training drives that promote company-wide buy-in and engagement to get involved with Quality initiatives
  • Explore ways to make training tools and guidance more accessible to operations teams, whether working in the field or office, to encourage people to harness best practices to complete their tasks
  • Discussing external association and stand-alone training that can further support technical understanding in more niche areas and enhance the specific knowledge of dedicated teams

4.00 | 1.00 – Making Your Case & Becoming an Influencer at All Levels of the Organization


People are at the heart of achieving success with Quality programs, but we all know that not everyone is open to readily embracing change. Therefore, as a Quality leader, you must have the skills to influence, convince and ultimately make people comply to a new way of doing things across a wide variety of situations.

  • Harnessing communication models to understand the types of personalities that you are working with and determining how best to persuade them to do what you want them to
  • Analyzing key organizational groups that Quality leaders regularly encounter and understanding their motivations to more effectively influence their decision making: How can we make Quality feel important to them and leverage champions to reinforce our message?
  • Benchmarking experiences of overcoming difficult situations and influencing buy-in to Quality initiatives at all levels: What were the lessons learned, positive and negative, that can be used by other professionals in the room?

5.30 | 2.30 – Harnessing Lean to Improve Quality Programs


Lean construction is a set of principles that can guide decision making, planning and execution of work on our projects and ultimately aims to reduce waste in the process. Therefore, lean tools and techniques can promote adoption of Quality initiatives if harnessed effectively across the organization.

Whether already adopting lean in your organization or not, this workshop will give you an insight into the relationship between lean and quality, and allow you to walk away with some immediate tools that can be adopted by your teams to improve their approach to Quality.

  • Overviewing the core principles of lean and how these can guide teams to work more effectively throughout design and construction
  • Understanding the applications of lean at an organizational, program and project level to reinforce key Quality values and initiatives
  • Walking through some of the key lean tools that can be put into practice with teams to encourage planning and drive early decision making when it comes to Quality assurance
  • Exploring ways to train in lean across the organization and maintain this skillset to reduce waste in project workflows and make Quality more accessible