Attaining success in the construction industry requires careful attention to many details, including labor costs, properly scheduling equipment rental, specialized labor and material/supply acquisition, among other things. Any disruptions, delays or overages can end up costing precious time and money. This has led many companies to leverage mobile technology to drive efficiencies in the management process. Functions like fleet management, BIM and 3D scanning and even OSHA compliance have been moved to mobile apps. In fact, this trend is so hot right now that construction companies have elected to build their own mobile programs to meet their specific needs. To help clients, prospects and others understand this shift, Barnes Dennig has provided a summary of how companies are benefiting from the available technology.
Benefits of Mobile Technology
- 3D Information Modeling – Technology has created new building and modeling tools that have made it easier for team members to collaborate and make decisions. In fact, most construction managers know that 3D printing and Building Information Modeling (BIM) are essential tools in large-scale construction projects. There have been dozens of studies showing how integrating these tools can increase efficiencies throughout the project. For instance, a mobile modeling app can help integrate detailed separate mockups in a virtual space instead of creating a physical model, which can save money and give customers more insight into layout and choices. In addition, subcontractors can use a modeling app to see the exact scope of work (e.g. viewing how tile should be set from the convenience of a smart phone). Real time sharing of essential data makes it easier for decision makers to quickly review and approve key changes. It also allows clients to see how proposed changes will impact the project and makes getting faster approval easier.
- Workplace Safety – There are many mobile applications that can help a company maintain and enhance their workplace safety program. GPS tracking of both people and equipment has become standard for many companies. Doing so helps decrease response time in the event of an accident. Beyond this, mobile technology can be used to track completion of safety and regulatory compliance training sessions, help companies complete basic safety workflows like safety inspections, safety observations (such as an employee not wearing the proper safety gear), log a project hazard (such as a broken ladder) or fill out an incident report. Immediate reporting of safety concerns and injuries means faster response time to critical issues and faster resolution of safety matters. From first aid apps for reference to quick medical care information to decibel monitoring to ensure proper hearing protection and apps that guide heavy equipment inspection, mobile technology enables a safer work place for construction workers.
- Equipment Management – Making sure equipment is in the right place when needed is vital to efficient management of a project. Several mobile applications are designed to reveal inefficiencies in vehicle and equipment usage and help to identify changes that can save money and time. These applications can also help with supplier scheduling and management. For instance, a concrete company can integrate with the general contractor’s mobile app to coordinate volume, delivery date, change orders and even a drop off point using mobile technology.
- Payroll Reporting – It’s no secret that payroll is often a huge headache for project managers. This is where mobile applications that help companies more effectively manage their payroll tracking and reporting requirements come in. GPS time tracking allows the company to know exactly when employees were working on the job site and ensures that they are receiving the proper amount of pay. Certain apps have an automatic log in and log out feature for each job site, ensuring that hours are billed to the correct job. This reduces errors and helps keep employees accountable. Some mobile apps also allow crews to submit time sheets directly from their phone and access auto-generated reports about current and previous pay periods, giving the company easy access to cloud-stored information and reducing the hassle of paper file management.
Mobile technology has significantly impacted the construction industry through on-demand apps that make various management functions much easier. The investment in these technologies has paid off for construction companies across Indiana and Ohio. If you have questions about mobile technology that could help your company, have a construction management need or require assistance with a tax, accounting or audit issue, Barnes Dennig can help. For additional information please call us at 513-241-8313, or click here to contact us. We look forward to speaking with you soon.