Technology has led to many advancements in many fields and improved work processes to be streamlined and efficient, and construction is no different! The industry has seen the rapid integration of Cloud-based construction management into its work processes in recent years which has proved to be a great boon to the industry, with many planning to increase the integration of such applications to further boost productivity.
As the industry aims to further boost this integration, it is important for people aspiring to join the industry, or long-time veterans looking to keep up with the times, to keep up-to-date on these new ways to do construction. There is plenty of software that pre-dates cloud-based construction management, and it is important to understand the distinction between the two and why cloud-based management is the future of the industry. We’ll also be going through what we can expect from cloud-based management, and how the industry can benefit from the adoption. Keep reading to find out why you should start using a cloud-based construction management platform!
What’s the difference between mobile and cloud computing in the construction industry?
At the present moment, construction projects may already be utilising technology to help construction project management. However, oftentimes these current attempts are just mobile applications that can be downloaded to mobile phones and do not leverage the true potential cloud computing can offer. According to a survey, only one-tenth of contractors have responded that they use fully integrated cloud-based software in their work processes.
Cloud computing has provided a technological development known as mobile cloud computing, which is a combination of the mobile computing that we are more familiar with, and the benefits of cloud computing.
What is mobile computing?
Mobile computing has already permeated much of our daily life — our smartphones or our computers being gateways to the internet. This means that you can access the internet to send and receive information whenever needed. However, This is entirely dependent on your connection to your mobile reception, meaning that if you lose connection, you lose access. Your information is also stored on the device that you are using, and thus only accessible through the device.
How does cloud computing help?
Cloud computing, in its essence, is to shift the storage of documents away from localised devices and instead move them to a centralised storage system. This means that any device can have access to the information that you store in this storage system, as long as you are connected to the cloud. This is a great boon for many construction projects, as you can access documents on one device and easily switch over to another device and continue where you left off despite the change in devices. That means that you can access it anywhere, anytime, on any device that is best suited for the role you need at that moment.
Not only is access increased, but the security of your documents and data is also superior to traditional mobile computing. Construction projects are rough places, and there isn’t only heavy machinery about. A construction site is often hazardous to many of our devices, and your devices are more exposed to damage when you’re on site. This means that, if we continued with traditional computing, you will lose all your documents and data should your device get damaged or stolen. By storing this information and data on an off-site cloud computing system, you guarantee that there will be an exact copy available no matter what happens to your access device.
Not only that, cloud computing helps facilitate enhanced cooperation and collaboration between people. Cloud computing allows for multiple collaborators on the same documents, meaning that everyone can have access to the latest versions of the documents, and also add to them as necessary.
How can we apply these benefits to construction management?
This centralised storage of information has many benefits and enhances the way construction projects can be managed more effectively and simply.
Ease of access
As mentioned previously, anyone can have access to the most up-to-date information and documents and data, regardless of their location. This means that you no longer need to send documents back and forth via email and track which version you’re currently on. The updates are done automatically, removing any ambiguity in the information that is currently on hand. This ease of access to information is vital to ensuring that everyone is up-to-date and can carry on with their taskings with full knowledge of their requirements. Workers can also feel assured that the information is correct, as it all comes from a single source.
This ease of access also results in being able to also collaborate in real time without being in the same location. Everyone can see changes that are being made, and these changes can be done simultaneously with changes made by other people. Additionally, cloud software also helps facilitate further collaboration through the hosting of screen sharing and virtual workrooms. This means that despite being in different locations, you can have the same efficiency as if they were all there in the same room.
Cloud computing, by nature, is easily scalable with little to no effort. That means that regardless of the scope of your project, the fundamental uses of cloud computing can still be used just as effectively. It is also just as easy to downscale or upscale the scope of the project when needed as well.
Additionally, the efficiency with which you can manage these projects due to cloud computing means that you can take on more projects and manage them simultaneously with little additional burden.
With that, we’ve come to the end of this article! Cloud-based management software is a massive boon when implemented in many industries, and construction is no exception. With cloud-computing construction management, projects can be monitored with greater accuracy and detail, allowing managers to source out potential issues quickly and effectively. It also allows for greater collaboration of projects, allowing you to get enhanced feedback from your various colleagues and workers seamlessly, helping you further improve the work processes on the construction project.