BuiltWorlds 2021 US Summit Sessions: Trey Sklar, Director, Strategic Business Group, Hilti Group

In terms of strategic investors in Built World technology, Hilti Group has emerged as a major force.  With 99% of their business direct to their customers, as opposed to through distributors and retailers, Hilti Group is in a relatively unique position to learn about their customers needs and also to support their customers in the transition to digital – with a twin focus on driving safety and productivity in commercial construction around the world.

Mirroring the broader changes we have tracked in the industry’s workforce over the past several years, Hilti has now created and grown a team of digital construction consultants who work upstream with their clients on how to leverage BIM, downstream on how to leverage digital job sites, and then also during the Preconstruction phase to help clients identify approaches to leverage techniques like modular construction. At first, we tracked the growth of “VDC” and other technology experts within industry players who were focused on helping fuel their companies’ digital transformation. Increasingly, we see companies from construction, tool and equipment, insurance and other parts of the industry building out capabilities to help their customers adopt as well.

In terms of their own efforts, we have catalogued several solutions Hilti has embrace in recent years:

  • In September of 2020, we highlighted Hilti’s work with Ottobock around human augmentation systems.
Hilti Exoskeleton Application Photo BuiltWorlds
As they look to tackle the industry’s looming workforce challenges, Hilti tells us about their moves in human augmentation. (Image courtesy of Hilti.)
  • In November of 2020, we got the opportunity to hear from Brendan Dowdall, Founder of Concrete Sensors, a concrete monitoring company started in 2015 and acquired by Hilti in the spring of 2020.

Concrete Sensors

  • Then, in April of this year, we had a look at Hilit’s semi-automatic drilling robot, Jaibot.

Hilti Jaibot is steered by a remote control run by an operator to move from one location to the next. Once in drilling area, the Jaibot drills all holes within reach automatically.

With all of this activity in just the past eighteen months, it seems likely we will continue to see big moves from Hilti, and we know that Trey and his colleagues are key players to know in the industry’s ongoing digital transformation, as tech companies, service providers, contractors, and manufacturers and others vie for leadership positions in an increasingly fast changing ecosystem.