Modernizing Construction Management


How integrated, cloud-based software is helping streamline construction operations and realize more profit

While the construction industry had long endured a reputation as slow adopters of technology, the past decade has seen a flurry of innovation to improve contractors’ operating efficiencies, better understand their projects, and generate more profit. Today, contractors are racing to integrate and innovate their operations in order to set themselves apart from their competitors.

“We’re at a tipping point in transformation around digital in the construction industry,” said Norbert Orth, Chief Transformation Officer at Portland, Oregon-based construction technology leader Viewpoint. “This is a time and place in construction tech that is truly exciting, because now accurate, real-time data can be in the hands of the right people at the right time. It’s that simple, but it’s so powerful,” said Orth..

Viewpoint’s suite of integrated, cloud-based construction software and mobile applications is leading a technology charge throughout the construction industry. However, there are still far too many contractors working in significantly outdated or generic software programs. Or, worse yet, using arcane processes like pen and paper. More importantly, their decisions are often made in a vacuum, siloed, without complete information. And people back in the office had little visibility in real-time to understand the true state of a project in the field at any given time, Orth noted.

Companies like Viewpoint are hoping to change that, leading a shift toward decision-making based on real-time digital collaboration and business intelligence. “We’re improving the profitability of a construction project in a way that just wasn’t possible before,” Orth said. “Our mantra is office, team, and field.”

That means leveraging software and technology innovations to enhance collaboration in real time across the entire project. Using these tools, everyone — from the professionals in the office, to the owners, engineers, subcontractors, architects, and others involved with the project, to the people in the field doing the actual construction work — is in constant communication.

The ability to communicate so immediately and have transparency across a project makes for a far more efficient approach to it. Thanks to cloud-access, simple touch technologies, and automated workflows, field workers can easily use their mobile devices to upload real-time information about a project so headquarters can access it at any time.

Construction projects are complex, and can often hinge on making key decisions on a near-daily basis. Viewpoint gives contractors the power to make smarter, more informed decisions that can positively influence how the entire project fares. They can also mitigate risks before they become serious problems. “(Users) can get a notification of a fire starting instead of news of a burned down house,” Orth quipped. “That’s where our clients find the most value.”

Not only are the manual, pen and paper processes of old inefficient and unsustainable today, technology solutions like those that Viewpoint provides make the entire workflow completely paperless. That may not seem revolutionary in today’s terms, but in a tough industry where margins are thin, and old habits are hard to break, innovation matters even more.

Viewpoint’s software being demoed at World of Concrete.

“Every vertical industry has seen massive disruption and opportunity when companies embrace and leverage new software,” Orth said, noting that Viewpoint has worked closely with its clients to help them adopt cloud and mobile technologies, embrace data-driven performance metrics, streamline operations with technology workflows. “We see continued technology innovation as a means to grow your construction organization, and we’re happy to be leading those efforts.”

For Orth, there is enormous opportunity to give clients the freedom to consume data in a way that’s customized, simple, and specific to their needs and goals. “Software like this gives our clients business intelligence that used to be impossible,” he said, “and over the long haul, they’re the ones who are going to win.”

BuiltWorlds partnered with Viewpoint to bring you this article. Click here to learn how Viewpoint is transforming the global construction industry with its suite of technology solutions to connect the Office, Team and Field for more efficient, profitable projects.