Businesses everywhere are constantly evolving as technology improves. From analytics to electric cars, there are more ways to do more and increase efficiency. The construction industry spans many different areas of skilled labor, not just manual labor. This makes it a prime candidate for measuring the impact of technological advances.
Over 4% of the country’s GDP is attributed to the construction industry. When construction infrastructure grows, we all win. Technology has contributed to the success of the construction industry on many levels.
Each category of technology that has impacted our everyday lives has improved construction . Everything from lower costs, lower risks, and higher quality standards can be attributed to new tech. Let’s take a look at some examples.
Health and Safety
A safer work environment is a successful one. Safety violations lead to fines and worker payouts. That’s the monetary impact, of course, not to mention the potential life implications.
Better tech means better equipment to protect workers and property. From better lighting, safety glasses, clothing, and more. Outdated reflective worker attire is safer with LED lights, tear-proof gloves, affordable gas masks, and more.
All the doom and gloom surrounding the automation of construction jobs are not all warranted. Yes, some jobs may be completely automated, but those will be ones that are the highest health risk. Robots can operate in extreme conditions for long hours without reduced production.
Robotics also complete jobs faster and more accurate. Repetitive jobs, such as bricklaying, cementing, paving, and so forth, can benefit from robotics. These repetitive jobs can be done cheaper and better, thanks to improved robotics.
Construction Management Software
Managing hundreds of members and coordinating their jobs all at once is much easier. Thanks to advancements in smartphones and software. Phones much more capable and easy to integrate with management software. Everyone can connect together on a construction project and update in real time.
Management software can seamlessly handle budgeting, orders, billing, zoning, and task scheduling. The 3D building schematics can be accessed and read by all workers who are needed on the job site. That means compartmentalizing jobs can be executed without confusing lists, codes, and ambiguous directions.
Thanks to accurate GPS-based systems, construction jobs are much easier to plan and manage. Plotting and designing new buildings has become seamless, thanks to GPS and laser-precision. Architects can submit accurate building plans into software without waiting for manual input.
This reduces the time between conception and execution greatly. GPS technology reduces the risk and error rates between construction phases. Engineers can map out construction zones and maintain a neat construction site throughout the process.
GPS is also being integrated into all construction equipment, vehicles, and tools. Loss of construction equipment accounts for millions of projects going over budget worldwide. Criminals can no longer get away with shaving off serial numbers to avoid getting caught selling off expensive items.
CAD software has come a long way, thanks to more powerful computers. Designs have become more detailed and easier to complete. There are fewer opportunities for errors in newer CAD software.
Computers can aid design through smart detection systems and integrated budget tracking. CAD designs can hold so much more information than they could decades ago. Now, you can work with data of civil, structural, and electrical schematics. These CAD schematics can then be integrated into other platforms for a consistent and clear picture of the project.
As we just mentioned, CAD and construction management software can be seamlessly integrated with apps. On top of those two big transformations, there are a ton of other smartphone apps that really improve life as a contractor. Manage time and materials on the fly with accurate tracking apps.
Another example, Carpenter’s Helper Lite, can help you calculate roof pitch, rafter lengths, stair lengths, and more. You have multiple calculator apps that will tell you exactly how much concrete, rebar, and waste materials you will spend on. There are apps that measure light, heat, decibels, and distance.
All of these powerful tools in the palm of your hand. Not to mention the quick access to walkie-talkie functionality, texting, and multimedia sharing. The price of having all these tools available for each worker is next to nothing.
This is probably one of the most overlooked areas of technology for construction. Drones have allowed a number of great opportunities for construction teams to plan and execute projects. The most obvious advantage comes from having an eye in the sky.
Surveying large areas can be done quickly and accurately. Sometimes, you’ll run into problems of not being able to traverse to sites on foot or in a car. This could be because of weather or surrounding construction underway.
A drone can bring you footage in real time to see what needs to be modified or reversed. This could potentially save lots of time and money from having to wait until later to see results.
Drones also provide a major security advantage for contractors, too. Rather than beefing up security, drones can cover blind spots when valuable tools and resources are on the premises. New drones can patrol and hover in place without direct input, making security footage easy and reliable to capture.
More Technological Advances
There are plenty more examples of technological advances for the industry. Heavy machinery continues to improve as technology advances, lowering risk and raising efficiency. Just look at how power tools have shrunk in size, but have a better battery life and torque than just a few years ago.
Jobs on the construction site are becoming much faster and are needing fewer people to complete them. No contractor should ever have to deal with miscommunications and delinquent workers in the future.
Just check out our demo of the best cloud-based T&M tracking, approvals, and reporting app. It provides an end-to-end solution for digital time and materials tracking, so there are no more guessing games.