The construction industry is in the midst of a massive technological shift –– and it’s happening quickly. Some hold out, assuming that switching over to new tech solutions will overwhelm employees and be difficult to implement. In fact, technology has never been easier to use. So what’s behind so many construction firms finally turning to technology? Headaches.
Payroll headaches. Timesheet headaches. Miscalculated budget headaches. The list goes on and on. Leveraging cloud-based time, equipment and mobile forms tracking solutions means you’ll never receive timesheets on napkins and scrap paper ever again. It means construction managers and clients will be able to see live field data without ever having to be on site. And that’s just scratching the surface. Here’s the best news: New cloud-based solutions are easy to implement for everyone in your company.
If you’re curious how others in construction are embracing live field data, WorkMax conducted a survey of construction leaders in June 2020 asking their honest, unfiltered feedback. The survey focused on field data types that impact key project performance indicators, including employee labor hours, safety checklists and reports, daily log reports, tool and equipment inventory, production and job cost allocations. Here’s what the survey found:
Live Field Data Improves Worker Safety, Including from COVID-19
Safety forms can be submitted from job sites faster than ever before by tracking time, forms and assets all from one app. And with the onset of COVID-19, not receiving instant safety survey reports could put your company and employees at risk. In today’s world, companies can no longer wait until the end of the week, the end of the month or the end of the quarter to see this critical data from the field.
Cloud-based safety forms can be required at clock-in and clock-out transactions, so employees can share health and safety data in real-time to mitigate risk exposure. Live field data also enables managers to share field safety training and videos across employee mobile devices, while live field data is connected to the back office so managers can stay in the know, in real time. With only 34% of respondents utilizing live safety reporting, there’s still plenty of potential industry improvement to be realized.
Equipment & Tool Tracking is a Priority
Ninety-five percent of respondents track tools and equipment somehow, while 52% don’t use any software to do this and only 21% use live data from an app to track it. The majority of companies recognize the importance of equipment tracking and use live field reporting, spreadsheets or paper to try and keep track of these expensive resources. Why? Because they know it’s costly to ignore this part of their business altogether.
Tracking equipment and tools gives construction leaders a window into who uses what, when and for how long. It gives them insight into when maintenance will be needed, which projects require the most support, and keeps track of lost or stolen items. There’s no question that live field reporting strengthens these important processes and procedures, holds workers accountable and delivers insights at the touch of a button without the burdensome paper and spreadsheet collection methods of the past.
Live Field Data Collection Improves Accuracy, Makes Analysis Easier
According to the WorkMax report, live field data is among the most valuable benefits technology delivers. Whether you’re running a small construction crew or managing hundreds of workers across a region, analog data collection is bound to cause problems. Besides inevitable human errors and lost documents, the sheer volume of information is difficult to collect and sift through, let alone tabulate, organize and analyze to turn it into meaningful and actionable data.
Today, data analysis is not a maybe, it’s a must. It provides the key insights that will give your company the competitive edge it needs. And when data is collected through live field reporting, it becomes seamless to analyze. It allows decision-makers to pick up on trends or see potential issues or project roadblocks ahead of time. Respondents said live field data improved their profitability, productivity and helped keep them on time and within budget.
Key Report Takeaways
- You can put it in your employees’ hands. When technology becomes a part of company culture, your employees will be empowered to use it. This means you will enjoy more accurate data, ensuring your projects are more likely to be completed on time and within budget.
- Analog collection methods are things of the past. Today and moving forward, live field data collection delivers fast and accurate data to you in an instant. Technological shortcomings can equal missed bids, wasted time and inaccurate billable hours. The right tech solutions will streamline administrative efforts, collect and highlight key data, and improve your bottom line.
- All technology isn’t created equal. There’s no sense in having multiple software platforms that address different areas of your business if they aren’t able to talk to one another. That’s why integration is so important. Today’s busy and competitive environment calls for every employee to work as efficiently as possible, which is why everyone in your organization needs access to the same information, whether they’re in the field or in the front office.
- An all-in-one platform is the preferred way to go. With one login to centralized data, user adoption, confidence, efficiency and productivity will rise. And luckily for you, that also means increased project control and profits. Win-win!
Find out what construction leaders believe is the most important benefit of live field data collection along with additional insights into safety reporting and more, download the WorkMax Live Field Data Usage Report here.
Ryan Remkes is chief executive officer of AboutTime Technologies, a leading provider of live field data collection solutions for the construction industry.