Canadian Design and Construction
Report special feature
Techflow Inc. has achieved success in steel detailing through its strength, expertise and technology, says Birmingham, Alabama based executive vice president Joel Hicks.
“Strength is in the numbers – we have more than 350 detailers in five offices in India along with our U.S. office in Trussville, AL (a suburb of Birmingham),” Hicks says.
“Our detailers go through rigorous training, continuing education and certification and are backed by experienced team leaders and managers in India and our project and management support staff in the U.S.”
Hicks is president of the National Institute of Steel Detailing (NISD) and says he has been working with other organizations to develop new training tools for BIM certification and detailer training to improve the industry.
He says that over the past few years, the industry has shifted to an environment where many fabricators are using overseas detailers. “There is a need for the manpower and lower labour costs, but this has its inherent challenges of communication barriers, non-familiarity with U.S. and AISC standards, as well as time differences. Our business model alleviates these challenges and allows for better communication with fewer problems and faster turn around, while still taking advantage of the lower prices.”
“Our U.S. office handles all customer contact and job setup and management to ensure adherence to customer and industry standards,” Hicks said. “We are always on call for our clients, with a high level of experience both in our overseas offices and here.”
“Our project managers average well over 20 years experience in detailing and engineering. We utilize the latest technology on the leading software platforms with dedicated crews using Tekla Structures, SDS/2 and BoCad.” The business has achieved NISD certification and actively participates in AISC and ISD committee work and programs.
Hicks says Techflow also contributes effectively in new work flows, including Building Information Modeling and Integrated Project Delivery (IPD). “We are working to revolutionize the way projects are done,” he said. “We can work with the design team during the design phase and develop the detailing model integrated with the design model. This eliminates any of the issues that come up when the detailing is done as a followon trade.”