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Head of IT, Claudiu Darie is one of the key figures driving PiLON towards an innovative, sustainable, and customer-focussed future. His team is responsible for the suite of proprietary Apps for which PiLON are becoming known for in the sector. Claudiu has taken a rare break from overseeing the PiLON IT Development team to explain some of his key contributions to PiLON’s delivery and growth targets.

Claudiu Darie first started working for PiLON in 2008 as an IT Assistant. Today he is Head of IT, leading a team of Analysts, Programmers, and Developers.

PiLON is unusual in that we operate in the labour-intensive construction sector but have invested heavily in an in-house IT department and digital technology. We believe that technology can reshape the industry and are already demonstrating the resultant benefits across our project portfolio.

Throughout 2020 and 2021, improved cyber security has been our priority, most notably working towards ISO27001, a testament to high compliance standards and solid security systems. Alongside this, the three unique industry apps developed by the in-house team have continued their ongoing evolution.

The Electrical App is a digital solution which addresses the major industry issue of ‘No Access’, with key features including:

– Intelligent project planning

– Team and resident communication

– Resource Management

– Document Control

The H&S App is audit and inspection management tool which streamlines the audit process, provides trend analysis, and allows the PiLON SHEQ team to send reports directly to the client in an easy-to-understand format.

The FireStop App is a web-based management solution built to simplify the fire safety compliance process. In 2020, we achieved full integration of The Firestop App with one of our largest client’s compliance data management systems.

“As Head of IT I have two main objectives” Claudiu explains,The first is security. We deal with a huge amount of client data that includes names, addresses and contact details, which means we have to be hyper-vigilant in how this information is stored, used and transferred across systems. My second priority is how we use digital to enhance our services and increase the efficiency and effectiveness of our operations.”

The creation of an Electrical App for planned electrical testing works is a prime example of how Claudiu and his team are delivering value through creative solutions. Designed and produced in-house, the Electrical App is a powerful tool that is now being used across the circa 18,000 electrical tests completed each year by the PiLON Electrical Compliance Division. Through an intuitive user interface, residents, resident liaison offers, project supervisors, and electricians can schedule, communicate, log, complete, and rate the quality of service.

“We know that one of the biggest problems when it comes to planned maintenance is gaining access to property; the industry average for being unable to access a property for a planned appointment is around 25%. That’s terribly inefficient and means that projects take 25% longer than planned because works have to be rescheduled and because we have no prior warning, we can’t deploy those teams elsewhere that day. The App has enabled us to reduce ‘No Access’ occurrences from 25% down to almost 7%. That’s a huge saving in time, cost and efficiency.”

PiLON believe in working proactively and are always looking to where we, and the sector will be in the years to come. This ethos will continue to drive our investment in proprietary software and the development of our teams.