Client stories

Changing common practices in the construction industry with Sweco's SmartDrawings

Sweco is Europe's leading engineering and architecture consultancy. They have their hand in directly planning and designing the sustainable communities and cities of the future. Sweco's mission includes co-creating solutions to address urbanization, capturing digitalization's power, and making societies more sustainable, working with architects, engineers, and industry specialists. 

Coventures' Entrepreneurs in Residence, Sampo Lehtiniemi, and Riku Kokkonen, joined Sweco's development and management team. They aimed to recognize the real potential of Sweco's innovation and identify opportunities to expand their business. 

Sweco SmartDrawings 

Sweco is actively innovating and piloting new concepts. One of those exciting innovations is the SmartDrawings service. SmartDrawings uses 3D Building Information (BIM) models and visualization to improve communication in construction projects. Sweco recognized the commercial potential of the new service but faced challenges when putting the innovation into practice for different customer segments. 

BIM models can drastically improve communication and reduce information loss and misunderstandings. SmartDrawings extends the use of BIM models from the designer's secret to all relevant parties. From management to site personnel and sub-contractors. 

SmartDrawings takes construction industry away from static 2D drawings to 3D views. Everybody can use the service with mobile and it doesn't require additional application installations. The service helps especially in more complex, unstandard installations of building elements. Everybody understands what to do next so that there are less asks and errors. You can read more about SmartDrawigns here. 

Read on to hear how we helped Sweco design the vision, strategy, and sales narrative, and refine their business model and sales processes for the long-term growth of SmartDrawings. 

Putting SmartDrawings' commercial potential into action 

During the intensive five-week project, our team addressed several different themes of commercialization. It began with stakeholder one-on-ones to create a comprehensive picture of the challenges and expectations Sweco had for SmartDrawings. 

Shaping the strategy and vision 

Along with Sweco's core team, we helped form a new business vision for SmartDrawings. SmartDrawings will help some 1M people working in the construction industry to better understand their building plans by 2026. 

"We felt that Coventures was there for us. Sampo and Riku listened to us and took our thoughts to the next level. There was a good drive throughout the project. Sampo and Riku challenged our way of thinking and brought fresh ideas to the table." – Niko Vironen, Product and Sales Manager, Sweco. 

Getting to know the target customer 

As a result of collecting customer insight internally from Sweco's existing construction customers and the market, we identified two primary target customer groups that would benefit from using 3D technology in their projects. In addition, we recognized three potential areas where Sweco could expand its business in the future. 

Testing the new sales narrative with real customers 

Based on stakeholder interviews and collected customer insight, we formed a new sales narrative for SmartDrawings. With the help of the highly committed development and management team, we were able to take the narrative out for a spin and test it with real customers in just two weeks. We had over 20 customer dialogues, 16 follow-ups, and 10+ test pilots with real potential clients during those two weeks. 

Collecting customer insight wasn't a one-time thing. It is now a significant part of the ongoing product development sprints. 

Outlining an ideal team structure and roles 

An essential part of our project with Sweco was recognizing the potential for business expansion. We also wanted to understand what business expansion would require from capabilities development and team development. We looked into the requirements from the core team level and related corporate stakeholders and supplemental external partners. 

How can our experienced entrepreneurs help your business? 

Coventures' "Entrepreneur as a Service" model is a flexible way for corporations to get the right talent for their business building needs and reach their ambitious growth targets. We have an extensive network of highly experienced professionals who are always available to help you conceptualize, validate and grow new ventures. 

Entrepreneur in Residence - Sampo Lehtiniemi 

Sampo is an experienced change agent with a very hands-on approach. He has over 15 years of management experience and a proven track record in growing companies. His areas of expertise include digital transformation, product and service development, partnerships, and management advisory. Sampo truly excels in implementing high-level strategies on a practical level and driving organizations' resources towards strategic goals. Read more about Sampo from our blog!

Entrepreneur in Residence - Riku Kokkonen 

Riku is a serial entrepreneur and venture-building professional. From his 10+ years of experience as an entrepreneur, he has gained deep knowledge in building science-and-technology-led businesses from the ground up. He is currently working as an Entrepreneur in Residence (EiR) at Coventures. Read more about Riku from our blog!