The construction industry is booming these days, and the increased number of projects your company is taking on reflects that expansion. That's great news.
With Growth Comes Challenges
This ramping up of business, however, brings challenges that may threaten your company's competitive edge. Safety, productivity, and technology integration issues that are problematic for your industry overall can also negatively impact your company, especially its field operations.
As a key decision maker in your organization, you are responsible for ensuring that these operations function smoothly and efficiently. But recently you've noticed several inefficiencies creeping into the workflow process out in the field. Some are communication problems that lower your employees' productivity and also prevent you from knowing exactly how they're progressing on projects. Other inefficiencies indicate a lack of visibility into the data you need the most, which affects your reporting capabilities.
Communication Problems that Can Hamper Your Projects
It's 10:00 A.M. Do you know where your field crew is? Seriously, you may be having trouble tracking the progress of crew members working on an off-site project. If you can't be sure they are hitting their milestones, then the project might be in jeopardy.
Lack of communication is another problem that can put projects at risk. The field crew needs to be aligned with the rest of the company, especially since they are not on site with their co-workers and may be working on multiple projects. And if field ops employees can't quickly and easily collaborate with team members or with employees in other departments because of communication glitches, projects may be delayed.
Another serious communication issue directly affecting your field employees happens when hazards go unreported, which increases the risk of on-the-job injuries. Compliance also becomes a problem because you don't have an audit trail to submit to health and safety inspectors. Your company's exposure to liability grows because safety issues on project sites aren't being properly logged.
Reduced Data Visibility Slows Down Reporting
The inability to access the right data at the right time is like driving through fog. If you can't see the landmarks to know where you're going, how will you get there? And who knows what obstacles you'll run into? If your analytics can't provide the required information for good decision-making, how can you improve operations?
One issue is the inability to capture the data points you need to create reports. Although your company's enterprise system is adequate for most tasks, you're still not able to extract crucial data during inspections and audits in a timely way. You'd like to be able to pull that data quickly so that you can submit a report on demand.
Unfortunately, business intelligence isn't one of your enterprise system's strongest features. Add to that the not-so-seamless integration with 3rd-party add-ons, and you find yourself at a distinct disadvantage for gathering metrics that promote your best decision-making.
For example, your responsibilities include maintaining and growing your firm's customer satisfaction, but your system can't generate the relevant KPIs to track customer experience. The system can't give you the safety metrics you need, either, such as the number of accidents and the number of safety communications sent to your staff.
How to Address the Common Pitfalls of Field Ops Communication and Visibility
Improving your workflow process doesn't mean that you have to campaign for a new enterprise system implementation while facing pushback from both the CEO and your employees. Company budget restraints, training employees and the time it takes to deploy a new system are good reasons for not replacing your current one. But it still comes down to this: how do you resolve communication and visibility problems that reduce productivity and efficiency?
Rather than pondering the hassles of new system implementation, you might consider an integrated software solution that boosts the capabilities of your current system. Array has developed a dynamic solution that gives you the tools to do this.
The Difference Is in the Features
Array's integrated solution offers the right combination of features to meet your communication and visibility requirements. Each of these features provides the flexibility you need to define the parameters that best suit your workflow process. The Array solution for field operations has five features: Form Builder, Mobile Access, Automation, Reports, and Sharing & Security.
Develop custom forms with Form Builder that will help you to stay up to date with all project stakeholders, no matter their location. You can build site surveys for your team and service satisfaction surveys for your customers. Eliminate the risk of an unsafe work environment by creating safety audits and inspection checklists that field ops personnel can use in real time.
Get a better view of what is happening on the work site through Array's Apple and Android apps. Crew members can use these apps to collect data, take photos, and sign documents. Step up the power of Mobile Access by pulling data sent from the apps to auto-populate your forms. This level of shared mobile access on a unified platform can encourage more employee collaboration and accountability.
Streamline your staff's email communication with the ability to send customized messages automatically. The Automation feature utilizes email logic so that you can decide which team member receives an automated mailout. You can also send specific team members notifications when form submissions have been received.
Array's Reporting feature enables you to view, download and analyze the data you've captured. Make better business decisions using analytics to review all your data. Or select specific chunks of data collection to generate information for business metrics, according to the parameters you set. Keep teams informed of any issues related to changing rules and regulations in your industry. Create reports in formats tailored to your audience.
Sharing & Security
Protect the data that drives your operations with the security features that matter: 256-bit SSL, PGP email encryption software, password protection, data encryption, and CAPTCHA. Set multiple user and account permission levels for employees and customers, and be confident that the right project members can access the information they need.
Are You Ready to Supercharge Your Workflow Process?
We're ready when you are. Array offers an effective, affordable solution for the challenges of managing visibility and communication in construction operations. To see a demo of our solution, contact us today.
Array helps construction operation professionals effectively communicate and improve operations visibility. Array's customizable forms and reports enable better construction site workflows by increasing project visibility and improving field communications.
To see how your construction company can have a better workflow, schedule a 1-on-1 demo with one of our construction operations specialists now.