construction tool, AECOM

AECOM has launched a web-based consultation tool that allows clients to engage with stakeholders from their computer/mobile device, driving public engagement for projects during the coronavirus pandemic

By providing a more resilient approach to community engagement, the new consultation tool will allow clients to engage with a wider audience who cannot attend in-person meetings during consultation periods.

AECOM clients, East Lothian Council, Oxfordshire County Council, Public Health England and the US Army Corps of Engineers, Savannah District, have signed up to use the public consultation tool.

A virtual event

The new platform can be personalised to show consultation materials including virtual reality and sound demonstrations, videos, maps, plans and pop up banners. The tool allows for instant feedback so the public reaction can be captured and saved for analysis and accurate reporting.

There is also a chat function so on-hand experts can remotely answer questions as visitors look around the materials, similar to what would take place during an in-person event.

Bringing people together on a digital platform

James Sachon, AECOM’s technical director of the stakeholder engagement team, said: “Using this web-based tool, clients can engage with a wider audience and communicate the impact and benefits of proposed schemes to communities without people leaving their own homes.

“This remote approach to stakeholder engagement during the coronavirus pandemic provides our clients and partners with a resilient solution to any consultation process.”

Andy Thomas, AECOM’s head of visualisation & VR in EMEA, said: “We already use a number of digital tools during our community engagement sessions such as visualisations, sound demonstrations and interactive apps, so it makes complete sense to bring them together on a digital platform.

“The use of digital engagement tools enables stakeholders and communities to understand proposals, allowing them to provide an informed response and participate in the consultation process.”

Kevin Carlson, AECOM’s global lead for digital transformation, added: “In the face of unprecedented challenges, it was critical that we create a seamless digital environment to visualise projects, meet virtually and bring communities together in partnership with our clients around the world.

“Over the next few months, we will continue to focus on bringing new collaborative experiences, driven by our global expertise in digital delivery, to the marketplace.”

A demonstration of the tool is available here: https://consultation.ai/demo/.

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