Press Release: 04.24.2013

Fostering Collaboration

Building an Environment for Success

McCarthy is a hands-on builder, so it’s logical that training and the use of the latest building technologies are an important aspect of the firm’s business. In order to create an environment encouraging and fostering McCarthy’s commitment to collaboration, training and technology in construction, the company’s Southern California Division recently completed a significant renovation of its 53,000-square-foot office building in Newport Beach, Calif. At the heart of the office improvements is a new training facility and Building Information Modeling (BIM) lab.

In addition to arming employees with the knowledge they need to build challenging projects, the renovation also accommodates the firm’s regional growth.

“About 400 people work in McCarthy’s Southern California Division, and revenue has grown steadily over the past three years,” said Randy Highland, McCarthy president for the California region. “With this success, we have outgrown our existing space. This past year, we were able to obtain the last remaining 6,000 square feet on the second level, and McCarthy now occupies the entire building. We took advantage of the second floor renovation to expand our third floor space as well create several new offices and work stations for added operations and estimating needs.”

Originally built by McCarthy and home to McCarthy’s Southern California Division operations since 2001, the Class A office building is located at the intersection of Birch Avenue and Mesa Drive on a five-acre site. The building is one of two, three-story campus style office buildings within the complex. Both buildings have parking on the first level and office space on the second and third levels.

Centralized Lobby Enhances Office Flow
The renovation has allowed McCarthy to relocate its main third floor reception lobby to the second floor where most visitors enter the building.

“Our new main entry creates a centralized lobby to showcase our brand and provide a better flow to our various departments and business units,” said Jim Madrid, vice president, business development and project executive for the renovation.

The offices for corporate west, human resources, accounting and the parking structure group reside on the second floor. Healthcare, education, commercial, preconstruction, business development/marketing and divisional leadership are located on the third floor.

Training is a Key Focus
While the need to provide additional space for McCarthy’s growth was important, the highlight of the office renovation is McCarthy’s new training facility and BIM lab. Located on the second floor, the technologically advanced training facility can accommodate classes ranging from 10 to 100 people.

Adjacent to the training facility is a new BIM lab housing state-of-the-art technology and equipment in an environment that enables open room collaboration and co-location for alternative delivery methods such as IPD, design-build or design-assist projects in Southern California.

“Learning is a core value at McCarthy, and it is clear that we need to invest in our most important asset: our people,” said Highland. “Our new training facility will allow us to enhance our existing training program by providing more cost-effective and cost-efficient space for our instructor-led workshops, formerly held at off-site locations.”

McCarthy’s instructor-led training workshops are a part of the McCarthy Build U® training program focusing on individual training needs through comprehensive methods. In addition to classes, McCarthy offers self-paced online training, hands-on experience simulations and on-the-job training. 

“McCarthy has a robust training program for the personal and professional development of our employee partners,” said McCarthy Southern California Division Training Coordinator Arlene Riley.

As testament to McCarthy commitment to employee training, the firm was named the sixth best training organization in America by Training magazine in 2013. This result positioned the firm as the highest ranked construction company on the list for the second year in a row.

Riley explains that the new training facility will be used by virtually all of McCarthy’s Southern California staff to help develop construction, business and management skills. Curriculum is structured by job type and also includes corporate training for management and leadership, personal development, quality, technology and safety among others. In addition, peer group committees work together to plan curriculum for the respective roles, ensuring every relevant job skill is taught during the training sessions.

“Our goal is to have well rounded partners who are highly skilled in leadership, communication, technical ability and teamwork. Our new training room will be an important catalyst to achieving these goals,” explained Riley.  

The new room houses state-of-the-art equipment with advanced lighting controls, microphones, whiteboards, ceiling-mounted projectors, large projection screens and a built-in sound system. An adjacent kitchen was also built to assist in the catering of these events. When the new room is not being used for training, it will serve as additional space for larger client and project team meetings.

New BIM Lab Enhances Team Collaboration
Strategically located next to McCarthy’s new training facility, a new BIM lab will be easily accessible for project team members including owners, architects and subcontractors collaborating with McCarthy employees during preconstruction and throughout their projects.

Dedicated toward the use of BIM, the new computer lab can accommodate up to 20 people and houses two large, high resolution flat-screen video monitors and computers loaded with BIM software.

“McCarthy and other leading architecture and engineering firms are using BIM-platforms on nearly all projects, especially those that are the most complex,” says McCarthy Vice President Design Management Jim Mynott. “Our new BIM Lab provides our integrated project teams a dedicated space with the appropriate technology to aid in the use of this revolutionary building advancement that saves time and money, enhances collaboration, and creates better overall project outcomes than traditional building methods.”

Scheduler’s Space Fosters Lean Principles of Pull Planning
The last key component of the second floor renovation included space for McCarthy’s scheduling team. This area was designed to encourage the Lean principles of “pull planning” with room for McCarthy’s office and site teams to work together to strategically plan and schedule construction projects.

LPA provided architectural and interior design services for the remodel, and the project was completed using a design-build approach.

“McCarthy’s new office space truly reflects the firm’s spirit of collaboration, education and technology,” said Chris Lentz, associate at LPA Inc. “The project features flexible team spaces such as the BIM room that supports McCarthy’s design-build partnerships and the new training space, demonstrating commitment to delivering successful environments for clients.”

Subcontractors on the project included: Berg Electric, Tower Glass, Key Air, Murray Company, ISEC, Standard Drywall, Mission Integration, CR&A Custom Graphics, CMF, Signature Flooring, Premier Tile, Graffix Systems, Canyon Insulation, Performance Contracting, COSCO Fire, Johnson & Turner Painting, Bapko, Seeley Brothers, IOS, SunState Equipment, Pierre Sprinkler and Landscape, Sheward & Son & Sons, Penhall Company and U.S. Demolition.

“The remodel of McCarthy’s Newport Beach office is a worthwhile investment in our people and business,” concluded Highland. “We look forward to achieving great results for our clients in this new collaborative work space.”

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