As mobile technology has become more advanced, it has made our lives easier. We can now do anything from grocery shopping to bill paying with the simple push of a button. Mobile technology hasn’t just improved things from a personal standpoint, it has also helped tremendously in the business world, especially construction.
Anyone in the construction industry knows that you spend more time out of the office than in. You also need to share information and coordinate with your clients, and with the job site. Implementing mobile technology makes processes more efficient and can significantly cut down on costs. Below is an explanation of some of the ways mobile technology assists the construction industry.
Project managers, architects, engineers, and construction crews all need to work together to ensure that a project runs smoothly. This includes releasing timely updates of project specifications, blueprints, diagrams, and photographs.
Before the days of mobile construction project management software, updates and changes could involve halting production while you try to get everyone together for a meeting to go over the new plans. Often, that process involved elaborate games of phone or email tag as you tried to nail everyone down. Even then, it was likely that not everyone would get the new information, resulting in misunderstandings and even further production delays.
The alternative was sending the documents through fax or email, and risking them getting lost in the ether, mailing them, or spending a lot of time, energy, and gas hand delivering them.
With mobile apps, you can post the updates and changes to a central where everyone will have access in real time. Some software even lets you hold virtual meetings that people can attend from anywhere there is an internet connection.
For example, let’s say that you use construction management software to manage your projects. You are working on a large office building project when the architect informs you that there have been some changes. Because he’s in Hong Kong, he can’t just drop them off at your office–the file is too large to email and it could take hours to print it all out and fax it. However, he could install something like the iPad construction app by Procore and load the new documents directly to the shared drive in minutes.
Better Project Automation
There are some processes that require you to take multiple steps to reach a conclusion. For example, if you are trying to calculate the costs of a project, there are probably several parameters that you need to calculate before you can even start the actual money calculations, such as the area of the building, the type of materials you need, man hours, and so on.
Mobile construction software often automates much of that for you, so that if you enter information in one are (such as the area of the building) it can automatically calculate other factors based on the data available. This not only lets you generate quotes more quickly, it also lets you update or amend your quote without having to redo a bunch of calculations. Also, because the app is mobile, you can make these updates from anywhere and at any time.
This software can also automate other processes, such as billing, payroll, and accounts payable, so that you are free to focus on other things.
Better Record Keeping
The software stores everything electronically on the server, which is backed up regularly. This includes correspondence, blueprints, contracts, insurance information, and employee records.
All of the information is backed up and organized so that you can have quick and easy access no matter where you are.
For example, if you are in a meeting with a client and need to pull up a copy of your bid, you can do so without having to interrupt the meeting.
As you can see, mobile technology can be very beneficial to the construction industry.