Having a good construction management software lays a great foundation for your program. While the right PMIS system can be a powerful tool to unify your team, it’s important to make sure those tools extend to your folks on-the-go. And lugging around a laptop on the job site isn’t exactly convenient.
Most construction software provide some mobile functionality. However, not all of them deliver the full capabilities field teams need. Take a look at what we see are the biggest benefits to giving your teams a powerful construction mobile app. It’ll likely take your construction program to ’11’.
Fully Integrated With Your Construction Management Software
Probably the most obvious benefit of having a good construction mobile app is that it works seamlessly with your construction management software. Everything your team logs in the app will reflect in the back office. There’s no data loss and no more miscommunication.
When your entire team is operating from one single source of truth, you’ll begin to see projects move along effortlessly. RFIs will begin to decrease and thus, change orders. Imagine approvals without delays… and if for nothing else, but for the ease of uploading photos straight from your device.
In an age where having a mobile app is an afterthought, it’s hard to imagine that we’re even having to write about one. The reality is, many companies are running their construction projects on antiquated systems. Sure, uploading photos from mobile is great. So are push notifications for RFIs and approvals. But the best construction management app delivers so much more.
Boundless Document Collaboration
It may seem repetitive, but something so simple as using your mobile device to upload project pictures is a game changer. Our clients have uploaded hundreds of thousands of progress pictures in various projects right from their phone or tablet. Part of our process is to open up feedback on how the software is working. We use that feedback to make improvements to the software, but we also look for what we’ve done well. Overwhelmingly, mobile photo management is one of the points of praise.
Construction photo management is at the ground level, though. What’s more important is the ability to simultaneously markup and comment on documents wherever your team is. Your architect could be on the West Coast while one of your contractors has a drawing question at the job site on the East Coast. A great mobile construction app gives your architect the ability to make notations in real-time from across the country (or the world), all in the same software.
It’s the same with other construction documents, too. Your mobile construction app should allow your team to upload, access, modify, and share documents and images from anywhere. Even 3D BIM files can be marked up and notated on the mobile app. This frees your team to be able to keep your projects rolling no matter where they are.
RFIs Made Simple
One of the biggest measures of project success is how construction programs handle their RFIs. If you’re already using a construction management software, you’ve already started to see the benefits of how technology can cut delays and improve communication. Managing your construction projects on mobile takes you the extra mile.
When your construction teams are on site and have questions, the construction management mobile app gives them the ability to submit those requests instantly. Whether one or one hundred, all questions will be hosted in the same central platform the rest of your team is working from—keeping everyone in the loop.
Respective users will immediately get a push notification of incoming RFIs. If those users don’t know the answer, the mobile construction management app makes it so simple to route the RFI to the appropriate stakeholder. They’ll then be notified, and can easily close outstanding RFIs with just a few taps in the app.
This process can come full circle in a matter of minutes when your teams are using the mobile app, giving your team that competitive edge.
Daily field reports are one of those routine tasks that can be a bit tiresome for project managers. Day in and day out, it can seem like you’re just making a copy of a copy of a copy. But those daily reports are critical. If something happens, daily reports are vital evidence in any legal action.
Mobile construction management apps can make this process a breeze for reporting managers. The app gives them the power to record these reports in a matter of seconds. It’s a simple as opening the app, attaching any relevant photos, log equipment and crews on site, and add any additional information required by owners.
It’s the same easy process for site visits. Your architect, the owner’s rep, or construction manager can use the same management app to record their surveys.
The convenience of a mobile construction management application even extends to schedule management. From the top-down, your entire team will have the ability to easily track their responsibilities right from their mobile device—iOS, Android, tablet or even Kindle. If the owner needs to double check program milestones on the way to a board meeting, no problem. When your contractors need to review their construction schedule, they have it at their fingertips. Every schedule can be accessed and modified quickly from anywhere and from any device.
These construction apps even allow managers to assign staffing resources to scheduled items as well. The construction app notifies that team member as soon as they’re assigned, so there’s no question of who is accountable for what task. You’ll have a record of this in your construction management software for full transparency, and you’ll see when the action item is complete (or delayed!).
Most importantly, each person will have their top-of-mind items front and center because they show in their Ball-In-Court which visible on their home page every time they log in. This will give each team member, as well as project managers and owners, a clear view of what’s on each team member’s plate right at any given time. Action items are prioritized and the app will send reminders for anything overdue. That way, there’s no question about what needs to be done ‘today.’
It’s All About Speed And Efficiency
Managing construction projects on mobile will make your program leaner and more agile. As you continue to explore your options, keep in mind that all construction management apps are not created equal. Not all of them give you the full suite of tools to help your team perform at its best.
The right construction management app works in tandem with your construction management software and will bring a new level of transparency, accountability, and ease of communication. Information is exchanged effortlessly and efficiently, and everyone on your team will be plugged in to the latest information.
Having this level of awareness slashes delays across the board. Whether an approval or another RFI, the only delay now becomes the speed at which you can work your thumbs. Take your construction program to an ’11’ with the right mobile construction management app and give your teams that competitive edge.