We live in an increasingly connected world, and we’re using more data than ever before to solve problems and understand the world around us. The same is true of the construction industry, which relies on data analytics platforms like ITLytics to make design decisions, improve efficiency, and even prevent accidents. From crowd-sourced design software to cloud-based resource management platforms, here are five ways data analytics has changed the construction industry so far and what you can expect in the future.
What is Data Analytics?
Data analytics is like a superpower that helps us discover and act on actionable insights. Using data analytics, companies can improve performance, make better decisions, and anticipate problems before they occur.
Typical uses of data analytics include:
- Predicting stock market trends.
- Recommending products or services to customers based on past purchases and behavior.
- Boosting productivity within an organization.
- Spotting fraud in significant financial transactions.
For example, Google’s search algorithm uses advanced data analytics to predict what users want so that relevant search results appear instantly when you’re inputting your query into Google. However, data analytics is also a vital tool in modern construction management beyond its use for search engines and likely our favorite use of it.
1) Enhanced Design
Computer-assisted design, or CAD, programs allow engineers to design buildings faster and more efficiently. Software that incorporates analytics, i.e., ITLytics, can take even better advantage of building information models by using feedback from these models to enhance designs. These innovations save time and cut costs, and they’re also changing how buildings are designed by opening new possibilities for precision in construction.
For example, building information modeling allows designers to customize curtain wall facades and other non-structural parts while maintaining overall structural integrity. Another benefit: It’s now possible to previsualize a structure before it’s built, increasing safety for workers on site. In effect, data analytics makes construction safer, more efficient, and more precise than ever before.
2) Improved Planning & Scheduling
Using a system that incorporates data analytics, you can now access real-time information about ongoing projects such as time tracking, workflow management, job cost management, and materials orders.
All of which help to make on-the-fly changes easier when necessary. There are also software solutions that offer scheduling capabilities and location services, and GPS tracking via mobile devices. These features enable users to complete real-time data entry while at work sites instead of waiting until they return from an assignment. This kind of efficiency is only possible through enhanced job site planning and better workers’ skills.
3) Better Site Management
Efficiency is one of the most critical factors for any project, no matter its kind. With data analytics available on almost every job site now, it’s never been easier to manage your site and ensure all your work hours are being put towards getting you closer to your final goal.
Not only does data analytics, such as ITLytics, allow managers to keep track of their employees’ schedules and activities on a minute-by-minute basis, but it also serves as a warning system for construction managers if anything goes wrong.
This helps them respond quickly before any damage can be done. Plus, with so much data available through analytics software, companies like Clarity PRM systems give managers and owners an unprecedented level of insight into operations that would otherwise remain hidden from view.
4) Optimized Resource Allocation
Leveraging data for improved efficiency and safety while improving construction is always a goal; safer and more efficient structures are critical drivers of change.
Big data analytics has enormous potential to help construction companies make smarter decisions and better use their resources. We’re talking real-time, contextual information that is adjusted on the fly to address changing business goals. You might be surprised how predictive analytics can give you a leg up on competitors and give your company a competitive advantage.
From managing field technicians’ projects more efficiently to automating office workflow processes, there are dozens of ways new technology can not only help you track down hard-to-find business insights but also empower employees to execute faster and streamline daily operations with software solutions that learn from your behavior, habits, and project history over time.
5) Future Proofed Building Information Models
BIM is a cloud-based building information model that saves clients time and money by providing a single, digital project version. Clients have immediate access to their BIM documents 24/7, making it easier for them to share these files with team members and subcontractors.
Using information models in construction also reduces errors during site assembly because all teams are using a single system. The accessible data transfer allows sites to go up quickly, cutting costs even further while ensuring that buildings are built more safely and efficiently.
Data analytics can optimize safety while simultaneously increasing efficiency in every aspect of design, construction, operation, and maintenance of buildings.
As buildings become taller, larger, and more complex, ensuring that they are adequately built with safe operating systems in place is increasingly important.
But it will require a massive effort from many industry professionals to reach those lofty goals. Inevitably, as construction becomes safer and more efficient due to big data implementations across all parts of the field, we can only expect construction costs to fall even further.