How Mobile Apps Are Changing the Construction Industry
General contractors, construction managers, and subcontractors make up a small portion of the working components required to successfully build a home or other outdoor structure. In 2016, it’s no surprise that many of these working parts can now be managed, tracked, and organized using field-ready mobile apps specific to the work of construction. Here’s a look at some popular apps, as well as the tools they offer, that are changing the construction industry.
No Time, No Problem
One of the biggest challenges faced by construction workers and managers is to keep strict timelines that contain several inspection points along the way. Before the walls go up, the plumbing and electrical wiring must first be inspected, right? So keeping a tight schedule is an important part of the job—especially if you’re working with anxious homeowners.
Thanks to apps like BuilderTREND, construction managers can handle everything from time constraints to subcontractors, with an interface that can be custom branded for a specific construction company. In addition to looking supremely professional with its customized logo and header, the system offers a great way to keep track of multiple moving parts, while keeping everyone in the loop.
Now you don’t have to worry about who, what, when, or where. It’s all right there in one easy-to-use app, available on Android and iOS for about $99 a month.
Another construction area that’s been greatly affected by mobile is communication. As you might expect, construction requires that communication among several parties be coordinated and constant. If something goes wrong at the job site, say with the plumbing, it’s important that the subcontractor is back on the site to fix it as soon as possible so that next steps aren’t delayed.
Fieldlens is an app that allows construction managers to keep an open line of communication with every party involved. Fieldlens has settings to allow you to prioritize certain conversations and include or exclude individuals to segregate information. There’s also a “LiveLayer” function that allows contractors to mark drawings in layers to avoid excessive clutter. You can then color code those drawings and share them with the right people without distraction.
The best part about this app is that it’s free, but only for up to three users per project. You can upgrade to the pro plan for $25 per user per month on both iOS and Android phones.
Clean Up the Clutter
Like most industries, construction has looked for ways to reduce its carbon footprint, and thanks to mobile apps, a lot of the waste and clutter has been eliminated.
The Canvas app is a great example of how streamlining the paperwork on a cloud-based system is both eco-friendly and extremely productive for construction managers and workers.
Canvas is a pick-and-build your own construction app featuring more than 5,000 specific apps to fit needs on a per-project basis. Just drag and drop what you want—virtually everything is done on the cloud. You can even get signatures on your phone to complete inspections, fulfill requests, and place orders.
Save paper on bids, estimates, and contracts with this app, which starts at $13 a month and is available on iOS, Android, Windows 8, and Windows 5.0-6.5.
Construction may require you move a stone or two from time to time, but it sure doesn’t mean you have to live in the Stone Age. Check out one of these apps or look to others for a mobile solution that fits your construction needs.