Baytna Baytak - Restoring Beirut

Baytna Baytak uses Fieldwire to effectively manage and coordinate their work, helping them restore over 1,000 homes previously damaged from the August 2020 explosion at the Port of Beirut.

Baytna Baytak - Restoring Beirut

Baytna Baytak began with a noble cause of finding housing for frontline medical staff during the coronavirus outbreak in 2020. They focused their efforts on ensuring frontline medical staff like nurses could live close to the hospitals they serve, reducing the possibility of infecting their loved ones at home. Little did the Baytna Baytak team know that their mission was about to take a different turn.

On August 4th, 2020, a devastating explosion occurred at the Port of Beirut. The blast, caused by unknown reasons even to this day, killed at least 200 people, injured 5,000, and left 300,000 people homeless. Altogether, the explosion caused at least $15 billion USD in damages.

The team at Baytna Baytak knew they had to get together and help. What started out as a mission to ensure housing for medical staff during the coronavirus pandemic quickly changed. Now, as a registered NGO, Baytna Baytak shifted their focus, time, and resources on restoring not only the homes of those displaced - but their hope.

Key Points

  • Type: Non-governmental organization
  • Projects: Multi-family residential and Commercial
  • Funding Raised: $1.3 million USD
  • Houses Repaired: 1,212
  • Businesses Restored: 68
  • Medical Heroes Housed: 800

Use Cases

  • Single platform for all team communication
  • Accessible data on any device
  • Streamlined report generation

Baytna Baytak’s team of 100 members works on restoring multi-family residential homes affected by the August 4th explosion. Because winter was approaching, the team started with a focus on getting families and individuals shelter as fast as possible. The goal of the team started with “the main priority of closing windows and main doors, but now we’re doing everything so it’s the whole scope of work,” says Jacques Matta, the Co-Head of the Reconstruction Team at Baytna Baytak. Baytna Baytak is expanding to other countries as well. They are also combining reconstruction with sustainability on their projects, such as a recent project focused on turning a heritage building into a community center.

Centralized communication

As the Baytna Baytak began this important work, there came communication challenges. The team felt pressure to move fast since so many families were still without homes. The pressure to complete this impactful work along with so many different teams and contractors made it tough to ensure everyone was on the same page.

“The most challenging part of my job is the fact that we had so many people that needed help. At the same time, we were a completely new team; we didn’t know each other. It was about organization and communication.”

Jacques Matta, Co-Head of the Reconstruction Team, Baytna Baytak

It was clear early on that the team at Baytna Baytak had to find a way to communicate more efficiently. The Baytna Baytak team began to use Fieldwire’s jobsite management software to give everyone access to up-to-date information they needed. If someone on the team needed to message another team member, they could easily pull up Fieldwire and start communicating in real-time.

“Anyone has access so we can give access to any engineer," says Matta. "They can communicate between themselves, and we can insert any document or file and generate reports. This allows us to work very fast on Fieldwire.”

Accessible data all in one place

In order to complete the houses correctly, the Baytna Baytek team needed to have all the information - from photos, to location of the houses, and messages between team members - all in one place. Before Fieldwire, the team was using multiple tools to store their project data. This, in turn, created opportunities for siloed or lost information. Also, the process of manually uploading photos and files was wasting time.

“We were using mostly Excel sheets, Google Drive, and Salesforce. Salesforce was the main place we kept all our data in. But we needed another software in which we could put all the details of each household. For example, a software where we could store all of the measurements taken by our contractors with the pictures of each element. We also wanted to have our BOQs on this software and be able to track the progress.”

Sarya Sarkis, Project Manager, Baytna Baytak

By using Fieldwire, Baytna Baytak was able to keep all their important project data in one place. This means that photos and messages related to a specific house live in one, easily accessible platform available on any device. The Baytna Baytak team saved a significant amount of time by eliminating unnecessary manual processes of uploading photos and notes.

“Fieldwire saves 10-15 minutes during the day on each house. This is because before Fieldwire, you would need to add 15 minutes to your assessment because you’re going to go home, open your notes, put them in Excel or Salesforce, take the pictures, and put them on the PC.”

Jad Farhat, Frontline Engineer, Baytna Baytak

Streamlined report generation

An important part of Baytna Baytak’s work is ensuring their donors that they completed houses correctly. After all, these are the direct result of the donor’s money. Baytna Baytak wanted to inform their donors with updates on the progress they were making. But, because the team was using manual methods like PowerPoint to generate reports, it was difficult to collect and share this data efficiently.

“Meeting the requirements of our donors is the most challenging part of our work," says Sarkis. "They have to know the exact details of every house we’re working on, all of the progress of these houses, and we have to have detailed reports to present to them. They want to know where all their money is going so having very clear pictures, BOQs, and pricing is very important.”

To keep their donors updated faster, the Baytna Baytak team turned to Fieldwire. By using Fieldwire’s report generation features, the team was able to send detailed reports for their donors with a couple clicks.

“Now with Fieldwire, I can click a button and have a full report ready that I can send directly to someone. This saves me at least one hour per house.”

Lea Ghorayeb, Co-Head of the Reconstruction Team, Baytna Baytak

Construction with an incredible mission

The hard work of the Baytna Baytak team is paying off. With their commitment to an incredible mission of restoring Beirut, Baytna Baytak has made great strides in the lives of so many. With the help of Fieldwire, the team was able to “complete over 1,000 homes,” says Sarya Sarkis, Project Manager, Baytna Baytak. Although this is at the heart of Baytna Baytak's work, they understand they are not only providing shelter, but hope for so many.

“After the work is done, it’s kind of like we’re erasing the nightmare that happened. I know no one will ever forget it, but when you have a new house that’s freshly painted and everything is new and the scars of the blast are not there anymore, it’s kind of therapeutic as well.”

Lea Ghorayeb, Co-Head of the Reconstruction Team, Baytna Baytak

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