How Top Construction Companies Tackle The 6 Major IT Challenges
The advanced technology we have at our disposal today has completely changed the face of any industries. Mobile technology, cloud networks, and more have made companies more efficient than ever! Unfortunately, not all industries have been as quick to modernize their operations.
The construction industry has fallen a bit behind compared to other sectors. Yet, GCs, subcontractors, engineering firms, and more have the most to gain from a good IT strategy.
No matter what type of construction or design work your business does, there’s a lot of moving parts involved. Not only do you have to manage projects that are being completed away from the office, but you need to keep everyone on the same page and accountable to ensure that things are running smoothly.
The old way of doing things just isn’t efficient anymore. There’s a lot that can go wrong with paper documentation, physical check-ins, and traditional forms of communication. Plus, those old-school methods take time. All it takes is one mistake to set a project back, which could ultimately cost you thousands of dollars.
Setting up a modern IT infrastructure can streamline so many facets of the job and increase your company’s overall productivity. A good IT provider will stabilize cash flow and give your company the tools it needs to get projects done efficiently, saving you time and adding to your bottom line. Here are some IT solutions that could enhance your daily operations.
One of the most obvious ways that technology can improve your business is by making it easier for your teams to communicate. In most cases, everyone is working at different locations. You might have one team in the office while your subcontractor is working on-site.
It’s very easy for things to get lost in the shuffle. Your IT provider can help you establish a defined communication method to share information across the entire company and with other collaborating parties. Mobile devices, dedicated software, and secured email systems make it easy for every member of the project to get access to up-to-date information about current statuses as details change.
Rather than relying on phone calls and in-person visits, you can deliver messages quickly, safely, and ensure the entire team gets them.
Like good communication tools, reliable file sharing can make a huge difference. In fact, it’s one of the most effective tools you can have. Think about all the documents that are viewed by different parts of your company. You have contracts, blueprints, complicated schematics, and so much more.
A lot of those files end up getting changed at some point while general contractors work. This forces you to print everything out again and make sure that the documents are getting into the right hands. What if you could just do all of that digitally?
Cloud-based Enterprise File Sync and Share systems are built to work on and off the job site. Documents are updated in real-time, ensuring that everyone has access to the latest version. Your IT provider can even set the system up to work with your current software so that the transition is much easier.
If your engineering firm updates a layout, your general contractor and subcontractor on the worksite will know about it. No printing or visits to the office are needed. As long as your team has a way to access those files, it’s smooth sailing.
Mobile Device Management
To make sure that everyone can communicate efficiently and access all the files you need, your IT provider can set up a mobile device management system. These systems allow you to issue company-owned devices to everyone involved. It’s a great way to overcome accessibility issues and get a better handle on accountability.
The beauty of a mobile device management system is that you can easily control how the device is being used. Your IT company will work with you to set up those access parameters. You can grant administrative access to upper-level team members, such as site supervisors. Or, you can limit access to certain files based on security clearance or job title. These systems make managing access a breeze while also improving your ability to comply with any important contract requirements.
Network Up Time
Of course, no cloud-based or remote system is going to work without having a solid network that you can rely on. This is why general contractors and other companies in the construction field tend to avoid modern IT solutions. Many worksites have limited connectivity.
However, your IT provider can help work around those issues. They can establish strong network access points in all of your locations, not just the office. At the end of the day, your network is going to be the backbone of your entire infrastructure. Services like proactive maintenance, active monitoring, mobile solutions, and hybridized offline systems can improve network uptimes significantly – meaning your guys stay working and not burning time because they can’t get an answer or access a document.
Cybersecurity is something that every company needs to be investing in. General contractors are a big target for hackers. There’s a lot of money and sensitive documentation being moved around. A business that hasn’t adopted strong cybersecurity measures is at a huge risk.
Creating a safe network is more involved than just implementing passwords. Your entire network has to be secured. This includes those all-important remote access systems and communication methods. Luckily, there are several ways that your IT provider can boost security and ensure that your company is safe. From firewalls to multi-factor authentication, there is a slew of security measures that can be implemented.
Finally, there’s the matter of employee churn. The construction industry is notorious for having a high turnover rate. On top of that, the industry attracts people from all walks of life with varying levels of tech expertise.
Many businesses won’t even consider advanced IT solutions because it’s often seen as a big expense in terms of training. While training is necessary, it doesn’t have to be complicated. IT providers can account for common training issues. User-friendly systems and accessible training resources can make it easier for everyone in your company to learn about the solutions you adopt.
While construction is often viewed as a rough-and-tumble industry, top businesses in this field have made lots of advancements to stay ahead of the competition. There is a lot to gain from a good IT infrastructure if you have not invested properly in it. The industry relies on technology just like any other. Modernizing your daily operations can dramatically improve productivity and enhance your cash flow. It’s a big change, but it’s manageable. All you need is help from a good IT provider.