Tracking construction project progress in real-time is one of the biggest challenges many project managers face, largely due to using disjointed systems that don’t sync with one another to provide accurate, up-to-date information. Without having reliable data available and accessible whenever it’s needed, effective project management becomes nearly impossible. Because of this, a growing number of construction companies are shifting to cloud-based construction software due to its ability to prevent costly errors, schedule delays and budget overruns by providing a holistic overview of projects in real-time with just a few clicks.
If you’re interested in implementing cloud-based construction software to manage your project needs, it’s important to develop a game plan that outlines your primary areas of focus so you know where to begin.
Here are some tips to help:
Determine a central source of data
One of the major reasons real-time project tracking is so difficult is because there are multiple parties involved—e.g., internal team members, external stakeholders, subcontractors and more—who are typically all using different systems. This creates a disjointed workflow where communication is siloed, and data is lagging and inaccurate.
Before a project begins, it’s important that project managers invest the time up front to establish a digital ecosystem where all project-related information can be stored and accessible. Using cloud-based construction software, project managers can establish a single source of truth for all project needs. This allows everyone on the project to access the most up-to-date information and to communicate back-and-forth seamlessly, providing both confidence and accountability for everyone involved.
Clearly define workflow
With so many different parties involved, it can be easy to lose track of a project’s status if the workflow isn’t clearly defined. Cloud-based construction software gives project managers more peace of mind by providing the ability to establish—and customize—workflows. Complex projects may have hundreds of steps with multiples teams involved, and most of the tasks will have dependencies that make organization and automation critical to project success.
With cloud construction software, project managers can break out large tasks into smaller pieces to create a workflow chart that outlines deliverables and milestones required to get the project done. Having clearly defined expectations, dependencies and due dates helps get everyone on the same page to reduce confusion, mistakes and errors.
Set up task tracking
Project managers need to know the status of a project at any given moment, which is one reason why task tracking is so important. In addition to that, task tracking provides project managers with insight into how much time each team member is spending on each task to help them determine if time is being managed appropriately and efficiently. Not only does this lend to greater accountability on current projects, it also provides critical insight needed to improve forecasting on future projects.
Documenting everything that happens during the course of a project is necessary to mitigate risk and to avoid claims should any problems arise during or post-construction. Photo documentation is becoming a standard part of the reporting and monitoring processes, which means there also needs to be a system in place as well as a central hub to store all supporting documentation. Fortunately, many cloud-based software providers offer unlimited storage options, so you can store as much as you want without having to worry about running out of space or deleting older files should any claims arise in the future.
Integrate your systems
Managing a construction project from ideation to completion entails the use of multiple different technologies—for example, BIM, drone footage, CCTVs, and more. In order to create project synergy, it’s important to utilize a platform that can integrate multiple systems and provide a centralized hub to store all information. Not only does this help expedite and streamline some of the administrative tasks, it creates a more efficient and reliable system for project tracking.
Keeping track of a construction project is extremely difficult if you don’t have the right tools to do so, and any delays or mistakes ultimately impact the project’s bottomline. If you’re interested in learning how a cloud-based solution like Premier Construction Software can help meet your project tracking needs, click here to schedule a personalized product tour.
Kathryn Dressler is a content strategist with more than 10 years of experience across the spectrum of marketing services, including blogging, social media, public relations, copywriting and editorial services.