7 Ways Mobile Apps Are Transforming the Construction Industry
June 11, 2018
The construction industry is constantly evolving, but the one thing that remains the same is that construction projects require a serious amount of coordination of people and resources in the field.
Construction managers have to keep track of their teams, subcontractors, daily progress, schedules, equipment, quotes and invoicing, bylaws, hours, and the list goes on. When some or all of that information is recorded on pieces of paper, in spreadsheets or buried in someone's inbox, it increases headaches and hurts productivity.
Now that most construction professionals have smartphones or tablets, there is a great opportunity to improve efficiency, reduce costs and speed up project timelines with mobile solutions.
Mobile technology that allows real-time information to be collected and sent to the office is changing the face of the construction industry. This technology is being used to track daily activities and critical information, and streamline collaboration between teams in the field and at the office.
Here are 7 ways mobile apps can make a difference in the construction industry.
1. Reduced construction delays
Gathering real-time information at the job site such as trades or contractors present, progress, deficiencies or incidents can reduce overall project delays. When collected in mobile forms and submitted for everyone to access right away, this critical information helps to bring issues to light that might put projects on hold and keep construction on schedule.
2. Improved communication with owners and project stakeholders
Completing daily reports at the job site on mobile devices and sending automated emails can tighten the communication loop with project stakeholders. When all parties involved in the project have access to the same information at the same time, errors are reduced and issues requiring attention can be addressed faster.
3. Increased back-office efficiency
By eliminating the use of paper and spreadsheets, construction companies can save hundreds of hours spent on data entry, collating information for reporting, or looking for paperwork that has been lost or filed away. BI dashboards can be used to quickly visualize and act on all the important information for the day. Increasing back-office efficiency allows projects to be run leaner, and completed on time and on budget.
4. Improve accountability of field staff
Staff travel times, GPS locations and time spent on-site can all be consistently monitored with mobile apps. This improves accountability and reduces labor costs. Costs can be also reduced with mobile timesheets that record clock-in/clock-out times to the minute. Construction staff can also document their work progress with photos in mobile forms, for better transparency to management and clients.
5. Document projects more accurately
Using mobile apps to capture information at the job site improves accuracy and reduces issues that arise from illegible handwriting, inconsistent data, and information gaps. Photos, GPS, time stamps and signatures captured on-site provide an accurate and indisputable audit trail for the project, delivering accountability to clients or evidence in legal disputes.
6. Manage equipment more effectively
Equipment scheduling and maintenance can affect a construction company's bottom line. With a mobile solution, it's easier to track and manage equipment use. Log equipment hours and keep track of locations, and improve planning and use.
7. Provide real-time mobile access to plans, bylaws
With apps that provide two-way access to information, construction companies can file electronic versions of work orders, plan clarifications, building code references, by-laws and more for quick offline access by teams in the field. This improves productivity and reduces the need for re-work.
These are just a few examples of how mobile technology can make an impact on the construction industry. Here are some case studies of how our construction industry customers have benefited from mobile solutions:
- Englobe - Collects critical building inspection data online or offline
- Nechako Northcoast - Logs calls, dispatches jobs and tracks road construction activity
- Centra Windows - Automates job costing, scheduling of installation crews, timesheets, and managing on-site projects
- Lafrentz - Records road construction progress in Flowfinity apps, accesses local bylaws on mobile devices
Flowfinity is a flexible mobile business process management solution for accessing, collecting and sharing information in the field. Our software lets you build apps and dashboards quickly to reflect the way you manage your construction business.
- Site inspections
- Safety incident reporting
- Punch lists
- Timesheets and materials tracking
Find out how you can streamline your construction business with a flexible mobile solution today.