Thought Leadership // Strong Foundation // Issue XIV
Modern technology has changed the way our society operates and how our businesses expand, grow, learn, and prepare for the future. In the past, the architecture, engineering, and construction industry has been hindered by the waiting game of collecting and analyzing data from the field without utilizing technology; but that’s changing. As an industry, we must adapt to the high-speed ways of our society to accelerate our processes, collect more accurate data, and shift our practices to create the most efficient and satisfactory results in each phase of the project lifecycle. This allows us to save time and money so we can remain focused on our craft.
In 2019, a survey distributed by KPMG assessed the construction and engineering index by measuring three pillars of future-ready companies. It found that 46% of respondents think that the people on the jobsites are the most important factor affecting the success and progress of our industry. We couldn’t agree more; our teammates on the jobsite are integral to the success and progression of our organization. And we know that as technology for the field advances, our teams will be even more effective in delivering quality at the highest level. The next generation of construction professionals can be trained on the fundamentals of project delivery through technology while maintaining the heart and craft that goes into the work.
Utilizing Top Technology
At MW Builders, we’re committed to training our employees to be strong in their craft and proficient at using technology to create the best results for our clients and our organization. We recognize that having a data-driven culture means better-informed business decisions, greater efficiencies, and ultimately, stronger results, and we use the top software and tools to achieve this.
“Each of the tools we’ve implemented over the years has changed the way we operate, and we’re committed to adapting with technology as it advances to ensure we’re doing things in the most efficient, accurate way,” said Jason Oldham, Vice President of Operations. One tool, in particular, has taken project information and data tracking to a completely new level: Procore. With Procore, information and data collected at each step of the project can be tracked within the software and is accessible via iPad on each of our jobsites. The team can then compare the information across projects and markets and subsequently use that data to learn, improve, and better prepare for the future. “The integration of these tools has created a cultural shift in our organization. It hasn’t only made daily tasks easier and made us more confident in the precision of what we collect and input, but it has also permitted us to significantly decrease the time it takes to share information across the team and the organization. We’re excited and ready to see how technology evolves and what becomes accessible to our industry in the future.”
The ability to access accurate data more quickly through these tools is imperative in construction because it decreases errors on the jobsite, and therefore minimizes risk. For example, Textura has streamlined the entire finance process that introduced our organization to more efficient and accurate billing and faster payments. “With this system, payments to subcontractors are timelier, owners receive sworn statements much quicker, and the risk of material delays due to delayed payments is mitigated,” said Lucie Trepanier, Product Marketing Director at Oracle. “With a manual process, it can be intensely time-consuming to keep up with demands from these different owners across different jobs, in different states and with different subcontractors, and ensure the subcontractors use the right forms, provide the right info, and deliver the right set of documents month after month. This technology solution handles the complexity automatically.”
Cultivating a Data-Driven Workplace
The incorporation of technology in everything we do has not only improved our workflow and processes, but has also benefited our clients greatly. It makes their lives easier and shows them that we’re a dynamic company focused on producing results in the most efficient way possible, which in turn saves them money and time. We must shift our mindset to one that deploys technology as a useful tool to drive strategic decisions and gain market share. Although we’re making progress, we still have a ways to go to be considered an industry that fully embraces technology. One of the biggest shifts in today’s business world is the transformation from isolated and project-oriented data usage to a completely data-driven culture. Companies must transform from an instinct-driven enterprise to one based on data and insights to properly measure success and potential growth; essentially, all data tells a story, and having a complete story helps a company see its present state and how to achieve its goals.