Construction demands an enormous amount of coordination, whether it’s organizing invitations to bid, performing MEP clash detections, amending project schedules or pricing change orders. The project connection technology used can facilitate the process or add more complexity and risk. Continue »
In the early stages of BIM deployment into the AEC industry, architects and engineers immediately benefited by providing more accurate construction documents in terms of visualization and coordination. Shortly thereafter, contractors realized BIM allowed them to more accurately estimate, schedule and execute a project’s construction. Now, more owners realize the benefits of BIM relating to facility management— from operations and maintenance to asset management and renovation. In this light, BIM has developed into an unparalleled tool of collaboration and shared return.
Adoption also is moving downstream to subcontractors, many of which are surprised at the return on investment when required to participate in the BIM process. As a result of the positive effect on their bottom line, an increasing number of subcontractors are adopting BIM into their standard business processes. Continue »
Not long ago, creating a mobile project team simply meant setting everyone up with a cell phone. As phones became smarter, wireless networks improved and data plans came down in price, contractors began to make mobility more meaningful. A new marketplace developed that offered construction-specific mobile apps for a variety of tasks, such as remote time entry, punch lists and even basic cost estimating. Continue »
No single advancement has the ability to change the construction industry as much as BIM, which has made its way into AEC businesses at an incredible velocity. According to the NBS National BIM Survey conducted in 2011, almost one-third (31 percent) of construction professionals are now using BIM—up from 13 percent in 2010. Three-quarters of construction professionals who are currently aware of BIM expect to be using it on some projects by the end of 2012. This rapid adoption means BIM will become the norm within the next five years.
The challenge for firms in the years to come will be to understand and leverage what the next generation of BIM will look like and what it means for their business moving forward. To put it plainly, if a firm’s use of BIM is a competitive advantage in the market today, what happens to that advantage when everyone is using it? Consider how BIM has been implemented during the past 10 years, and then overlay the advancements in cloud and mobile technologies to see what the future might look like for the construction industry. Continue »
Engaged Leadership Makes the Difference
BIM is more than a garden-variety software installation; it’s an all-encompassing exercise in change management. To succeed, the implementation effort must be led and championed from the top—not by middle managers and technical experts.
BIM is an organizational shift disguised as a software implementation. To get the most value, it’s best to treat BIM like learning a new language—one that will take a while for the entire enterprise to speak fluently. It can affect every aspect of how general contractors do business, from bids and pre-construction to site supervision and cost control.
Twenty years ago, the pre-construction process involved stacks of paper, trails of phone calls and nothing more high tech than a filing cabinet. Thanks to the cloud, everything from prequalification to proposal review has become paperless, automated and centralized—cutting administrative costs and boosting project efficiency from subcontractors, estimators and construction managers.
Which technologies are transforming the bid process for today’s general contractors, and what’s in the works to enhance their future operations? Let’s take a look. Continue »
To adapt to market changes and economic factors, many construction companies cut staff, bid and executed projects at much lower profit margins, switched to lower cost subcontractors and suppliers, added new specialties, diversified their businesses and found new ways to operate more efficiently.
Successful construction businesses question how to make the most of what they have, as well as seek ways to increase their revenue without driving up overhead costs and putting their bottom line at risk. Continue »
In the construction business, a renovation can be just as costly and complicated as building an entirely new structure. Plus, it may not be possible to completely modernize a renovated building’s infrastructure. The same can be true when it comes to updating a construction firm’s communications infrastructure. By migrating to a hosted (i.e., cloud-based) communications platform that integrates voice, data and video, construction owners and managers gain access to an array of new technologies and capabilities at a lower investment and a faster ROI.
Simply put, cloud-based Voice over Private Internet (VoPI) is a revolutionary approach to unified communications that uses private, point-to-point circuits to carry customers’ voice, data and video. By leveraging communications on an integrated platform, VoPI allows for real-time collaboration and increased productivity. At the same time, VoPI can eliminate 100 percent of traditional telecom costs and reduce the number of vendors involved in voice and data. Continue »
On Center Software announces NEW RELEASE for On-Screen Takeoff®, Quick Bid, Digital Production Control™.
The Woodlands, Texas (Dec 17, 2012) — On Center Software, the first name in construction automation, announces today the latest release of its award winning portfolio: On-Screen Takeoff®, Quick Bid, and Digital Production Control™.
Customers with current active licenses on maintenance will benefit from the following new features: Continue »
For years, the construction industry has talked about closing the divide between the office and the field. The perception that this divide exists stems from how construction companies typically approach their work. At the highest level, construction projects are usually viewed from two perspectives: operational and financial. However, there is a third perspective to consider, a middle ground that offers a better informed view of the project and a place where both sides can collaborate. Continue »
Building information modeling (BIM) has demonstrated great value for design and pre-construction processes. Yet, technology for the field has lagged significantly behind that of the back office, creating a chasm between the virtual design and its physical delivery. Continue »
The Challenges and Benefits of BIM Today—and in the Future
When building information modeling (BIM) began gaining popularity a decade ago, it was expected to dramatically change the construction industry. In addition to replacing 2-D drawings with 3-D, 4-D and 5-D models, BIM users can determine exactly how each building component works together in the planning stage to create a more cost- and time-efficient final product. Now that the industry is familiar with the technology, the ways in which BIM is used has exceeded what was initially forecast. Continue »