IT for General Contracting Business: How Can It Help?
Information technology is revolutionizing how things are done in the US construction industry. How does IT help general contracting businesses thrive and grow? Let’s find out below.
Over the recent years, we’ve seen how advancements in information technology drastically revolutionized various industries – and the same is happening in the construction industry. Construction professionals, general contractors, and other stakeholders use IT for different aspects.
With an estimated market size of around $1.36 trillion, being on top of the competition is vital for every player. IT for small businesses is a great equalizer because it provides tools that enable them to compete with major companies.
Investing in IT is a necessity and indispensable in the construction sector.
For general contractors, IT solutions offer efficiency in every aspect from meeting with clients to closing projects, from hiring workers to scheduling and payroll; from design to project management; and lots more. According to project managers at a general contracting company, AFS General Contracting, information technology streamlines business processes, ensures project quality, and ultimately boosts revenues.
As the general contracting industry adopts tech innovations and becomes more competitive, investing in the latest technology trends in construction will prove beneficial. Let’s look at how IT can help general contracting companies stay competitive.
Efficient project management
One of the significant contributions of IT in general contracting is ensuring efficient project management. Construction companies are increasingly dependent on project management software to ensure that all aspects of a building project are coordinated and well-planned. This IT solution makes it easier to organize the day-to-day operations. General contractors can manage resources and time more efficiently with project management software.
Asset and equipment monitoring
In the construction sector, the profitability of a business depends on how well you manage resources, including assets and equipment. Managing the status and location of equipment and assets at a large construction site can be a challenge. The Internet of Things (IoT) allows construction contractors to track all types of machinery – their usage, location, scheduled preventive maintenance, and condition. Modern construction equipment equipped with connected sensors can be tracked using an IoT system. With IoT, general contractors know the state of their equipment anytime, anywhere. For other resources that are not IoT-ready, electronic tags like barcodes, QR codes, and RFID chips can be used to track them.
Streamline job site processes
General contracting businesses are much like other enterprises. Typically, construction contractors rely on IT solutions to track daily field reports and communication. Organizational business needs can be streamlined using apps like holding client meetings, accounting and invoicing, payroll, and managing emails. Cloud-based technologies are also preferred for sharing drawings, documents, digital files, and similar content in real-time.
3D modeling access
General contractors use Building Information Modeling (BIM) software to create digital depictions of their building projects. Scanning cameras create an interactive 3D model of a building. Using computer-aided design software, the construction team can access information about a project in real-time. It fosters communication and ensures that all team members understand the goals and expectations of the project.
BIM can also be used to create an updated project model, allowing stakeholders to view its current status even without visiting the site. Even post-construction, BIM proves useful for many other purposes such as future planning, building maintenance, disaster planning, and site closure. As IT becomes a staple in the construction industry, more and more general contractors turn to BIM for their documentation.
IT provides general contractors with numerous tools to share, discuss, and improve project designs. If there are revisions, the project team members can easily access the drawings or files. This also makes it easier to discuss with other team members potential issues and resolve them. These IT solutions reduce paperwork and cut down delays. And unlike paper-based documents, digital files are easier to back up.
These are just some ways IT proves useful for general contracting companies. In the general contracting business, investing in the right IT solutions is a must to thrive, stand out, and succeed in the competitive marketplace.