While the construction industry has historically had the lowest spend on IT and technology, the landscape is rapidly changing. Almost all contractors are using construction management software for scheduling, estimating, job costing and submittal reviews, and there are dozens of companies that offer such services.
What is really exciting are the new technologies enabling contractors to get more accomplished with less time, risk and error.
• Drones are quite literally taking off in construction. Drones are an inexpensive way to get a unique perspective on project progression from a bird’s eye view — without having to hire a manned aircraft. Drones can capture survey imagery, contribute to jobsite safety, provide time-lapse imagery and even thermal imaging to evaluate building envelopes and enclosures. While the imagery is valuable on its own, a number of software providers are offering solutions to help analyze the data and even include it back into building information modeling (BIM) models.
• Construction management software provides projects with a fully featured blueprint management solution, making it easy for users in the field to view, edit and share drawings. Punch list apps add both speed and structure to the closeout process and alerts the team when important items are reported so they can be quickly addressed. Teams can complete a walkthrough in minutes while attaching all the pertinent details about each deficiency including photos, checklists, categories, hashtags and due dates.
• LEED construction documentation automates the collection, creation and verification of LEED (leadership in energy and environmental design) documentation, saving hundreds of hours of time while reducing the risk of missing project goals. For example, Green Badger’s dashboard provides real time updates of all LEED construction credits, while the software eliminates perpetually cumbersome Excel spreadsheets and manual processes that teams have used in the past. The mobile app allows for all in-field LEED inspection reports to be knocked out from a smartphone or tablet.
From soaring the skies, to walking the site, to killing the spreadsheet, to verifying a product’s sustainability with the scan of a barcode, the construction industry’s adoption of technology is accelerating rapidly. Proper use can help differentiate you from the competition, win more work and get your projects completed on time and on budget. So what are you waiting for?
Source: Conexpo-Con/Agg 365. Tommy Linstroth (LEED Fellow) is founder and CEO of Green Badger, and a principal in consulting firm Trident Sustainability Group.