It is no secret that the construction industry is currently under extreme pressure due to a number of factors such as project complexity, poor field productivity, and high rework rates.
All these different parameters compose a very problematic image for the sector and highlight the need for better communication and, by extension, better collaboration across the supply chain.
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Unfortunately, that is not always an easy task. Normally, there is a vast number of stakeholders involved in a construction project and information can easily get lost if there’s no system in place.
Thankfully, the emergence of intuitive digital solutions during the last years has helped the sector a lot in working faster and much more efficiently.
Nevertheless, there are still many things that need to be done before we can claim that construction is getting the most out of the use of the software. For that to happen, it’s of paramount importance that everyone in the industry understands deeply the true impact of digital solutions on the construction industry.
Without further ado, here are five reasons software is expected to take the construction industry by storm:
Why Construction Software is Changing The Construction Industry?
1. Data Collection and Analysis
During the recent European ConTech Summit 2019 which took place in London, all participants agreed that the construction industry needs to become much better in capturing, storing and analyzing its data.
At the moment, it appears that the vast majority of it are either thrown away or not collected at all. This results in a sector which is tremendously under-digitized with no clue for what the next step for boosting field productivity and decreasing rework rates should be.
It doesn’t take much, then, to understand why construction software could be, and already is, as a matter of fact, a game-changer for this industry. Through the use of an end-to-end digital solution which could streamline the construction phase, all project members could collaborate and exchange critical updates in a simple and easy way.
On top of that, either we refer to progress communication, on-site planning or on-site follow-up communication, all these precious pieces of information can be properly stored and examined in order to improve not only upcoming tasks of the current project but future projects, as well.
2. Programme is Everything
This might sound like an exaggeration but it certainly isn’t. Programme in construction is king as it is the foundation on which an entire project is built. However, it is also one of the main sources of misunderstandings and costly mistakes during the development of a project.
The most common reason behind that has to do with the fact that in many cases the various stakeholders of the project are working on different, and most important outdated, versions of reality.
Digital tools can effectively bridge this gap between the construction site and the boardroom as they present a single source of truth on which all different sides can work and add their latest updates.
That is extremely powerful if we take into account how complex many construction projects can be and the number of contractors and subcontractors involved during the entire process. A single mistake or miscalculation can lead to a chain of delays and additional operational costs. Add to that the possibility for serious project disputes and you have an explosive mix on your hands.
Construction software can act as the force that keeps everyone up-to-date and fully-informed on what’s happening on and off-site.
Next on our list is the issue of standardization in construction. It’s an explosive trend which is taking construction by storm at the moment and which is vastly depended on the use of sophisticated digital solutions.
In simple words, the idea behind standardization is that the development of all projects, from design to completion, is based on the same set of systems and processes. In that way, the project team can always feel sure that the most effective way possible for the completion of a project has been chosen.
Furthermore, the prediction of time and resource-consuming problems can be timely. So in general standardization can contribute to a smoother building process with fewer surprises and better use of the available resources.
It is easily evident that the use of construction software can help the industry accelerate the standardization wave and put in place specific processes and specifications which will eventually lead to safer built structures of better quality.
As we already mentioned above, data is the means which is expected to pave the way for this groundbreaking change and which could eventually provide valuable feedback with regards to which processes we need to keep and which we have to optimize further.
BIM is one of the powerful buzzwords in construction right now. It refers to an open and more collaborative way of working and exchange vital information around the project. All objects related to the construction process can be visualized and represented in a BIM model.
Based on these representations people both on site and the office can detect any project clashes and ensure that everything progresses as it should. What is more, BIM can provide great help with the snagging process.
There are different levels and dimensions of BIM depending on the type of the collected data. It goes without saying that there is still a long way to go before we can claim that the construction industry has a good understanding of BIM’s full potential.
Nonetheless, the paradigm shift has already begun around the globe and this can be also reflected on the legislation of some countries (eg. BIM Level 2 mandate in the UK).
Last but certainly not least, safety on site. Digital solutions can play a substantial role in raising the bar when it comes to safety on site. By being able to map out the entire construction process, from start to finish, the project team can remain in control of the field and fully aware of any sources of danger for the workers.
For instance, through the use of construction software on-site personnel can remain informed with regards to any material delivery, tasks that require rework and snags which could end up being a threat for them and for the project as a whole.
Additionally, by updating the programme construction managers can warn individuals on site for a potential threat and keep the data that triggered this warning for further analysis. In that manner, the stakeholders of this project can ensure that such issues don’t emerge again in the future.
In that sense, construction software could function as a safety net which can highlight dangerous situations before they even become visible.
The Bottom Line
Wrapping it all up, it is apparent that the contribution of contribution software in construction is multi-dimensional and covers a number of different project aspects. The digital revolution of the sector has become and the catalyst for this meaningful change is data.
Now more than ever, the entire construction industry should come together and fulfill its mission for more transparent, efficient and data-driven systems and processes.