Mobile Apps are Changing the Construction Industry4 min read - Insights
Mobile apps in the construction industry are being used to improve quality control and how your team shares information
Three of the major issues facing the construction industry are project efficiency, quality control and information management. We previously discussed improving productivity on construction sites through IoT, Wearables and Artificial Intelligence. But how can Mobile apps in the construction industry help address these key challenges?
Digital Workflows & Paperless Processes
Between 50 and 80 percent of problems on construction sites are attributed to missing or delayed information. Project managers in the industry are using construction apps to combat this problem. With an app, you have one centralised system which can be accessed by multiple users from a variety of devices.
All of the information you store here is then updated in real-time for any connected users. This paperless process also gives you an easily searchable audit trail. This speeds up tracking information and retrieving past communication.
Many construction companies have a large number of mobile or field workers, some of which are already taking advantage of project management apps. Using these applications, you and your team can work on-site with offline access and get instant updates as soon as you re-connect to the internet.
This system means no duplicate documents and stops your employees wasting time either waiting for or chasing up information. Construction management apps make organisation easier and increase your employees’ productivity.
Over a third of costs in construction projects are due to material waste and remedial work. Because of this there is a growing demand for efficiency. With construction software that is updated in real-time, you can more efficiently organise your projects.
Site Diaries, Logs & Permits
Digital diaries are synchronised, easily-shared and have links to reminders or notifications. Using an app, you can easily share and search through project checklists and site logs. Because project management apps integrate with digital diaries and logs, you can quickly respond to delays and re-schedule tasks.
Since its introduction, BIM has increased in popularity with 54% of construction professionals using BIM on at least some of their projects. Having access to your BIM files on-site lets you and your team locate, track and resolve any on-site issues with ease.
Defects & Hazard Observations
When snagging defects or hazards, workers need to keep track of a large amount of data. Your team will often have to issue an item number as well as note the location and date of the problem.
Construction management software will automate snagging and speed up this process. For example, a mobile app will automatically keep track of details such as date, geolocation and item number.
Your workers will be able to quickly snap pictures of the problem and upload them to the relevant record. All data and any relevant files are then automatically uploaded and instantly accessible by other workers.
Project Security, Safety Measures & Compliance
Using a construction app, you can choose the required fields on forms and reports. This is great for organisation but also reduces the chance of any on-site safety issues.
An app ensures all the necessary information is easily available so the relevant personnel can act quickly to solve the problem. This greatly reduces the risk of accident or injury by speeding up the safety process.
Another benefit of a cloud-based system is knowing that all your data is securely backed up. You can customise access to specific screens based on employee role. If necessary, you can even set up security measures such as 2-step verification for projects with strict compliance requirements.
Big Data, Analytics and Reporting
A digital workflow gives you lots of real-time data for analysis and reporting. You can use this data to visualise your progress in dashboards, graphs and tables. You can track tasks, forecast costs and quickly identify areas where you need to take action.
Further to this, you will have access to advanced reporting where you can monitor employee performance (grouped or individually), identify bottlenecks and find new ways to increase productivity and efficiency.
In conclusion, mobile apps are having a huge impact on construction management. The shift towards mobile and interconnected systems is driven by a need for efficiency. Taking advantage of this technology will stop you from being left behind in a rapidly-changing industry.