Given all of the paperwork that is part and parcel of a construction project, it’s understandable that project managers and superintendents don’t particularly want to do more. And given all of the updating that does go on throughout the project process, is it truly necessary to do project reporting on a daily basis? The short answers to that would be yes, and that it’s not a bad idea. Yes, because of a number of clients particularly government ones, now require daily reports on topics ranging from crew safety meetings to subcontractors’ staff hours. And it’s not a bad idea because even if your construction firm is working for a client who does not require daily reporting, your employees should still create these records both to protect your business, and to create a tool that can be referenced for future projects.
Mobile applications for Field Reporting, in particular, are revolutionizing how subcontractors benefit with increased productivity, project data accuracy and generating greater profits. Below are four benefits that should convince you it’s time to consider mobile technology seriously.
Today, it doesn’t take much to get litigation started in the construction industry. Seemingly excessive subcontractor charges. An obscure (but important) contract page that the client claims to have “missed.” Arguments over the physical condition of a work site. Contractors may well find themselves on either side of a dispute, which is why they should always be careful to have well-documented daily reports in an easy to read style that can be accessed by appropriate parties. And it would be helpful if these reports supported the inclusion of relevant photos and other visual media.
You no longer need to keep “written documents” (all are hosted in the cloud) of a project’s progress (this again includes photographs), managers and supervisors can positively influence project outcomes by tracking staff hours, delivery schedules, working around inclement weather, etc. Construction Firms should be warned however that implementing new technology to track employee and work activity can cause worker dissatisfaction, something that the labor-starved construction industry needs to understand and approach with empathy.
Catching Small Issues Before They Become Big Issues
Ongoing problems with a supplier. Problems connecting with a stakeholder or team member. The strange red sludge oozing out of a hole at the edge of a site that’s getting a little more noticeable every day. Daily field reporting creates a record that can be used to justify certain actions (like hiring additional equipment or ordering testing) to prevent problems from developing.
Visibility To Project Managers And Executives
As much as managers, firm heads, and their partners would like to give each project they’re involved with their daily and unrelenting attention, it’s just not possible, especially at busy firms during peak seasons. However, platforms such as eSUB offer with extensive project management and reporting capabilities. Well-documented and archived projects provide CEOs and stakeholders a way to track real-time progress and follow the project’s history.
With the advent of construction-oriented applications for ever-present mobile devices, daily reporting from the field has never been easier. eSUB’s Field Works Mobile App for daily reporting, for example, has reduced daily reporting time by hours each week, in addition to allowing reports to be transmitted in seconds to the management team. Your field reports are also pushed to the cloud, organized around projects. Also, creating report reminders or warnings to be issued, eSUB’s software allows photos (and annotations) to be added to reports, creating both an evidence trail for litigation purposes and a visual record for distant stakeholders.
Lastly, the cloud offers tremendous upside to hosting your private data securely and making it accessible from anywhere for as long as necessary. Say goodbye to the hard drive and network that is costly to maintain. Applications for the field are changing the game in construction. Taking advantage of the field technology and capabilities to help your construction firm will give you that competitive edge.