Many of today’s construction job sites have adapted to become just like any other workplace, which is to say they are just as reliant on digital connectivity as other modern businesses.
Technology has always played a role in ensuring more efficient, cost-effective, and, of course, safer construction. But in the new decade, we can expect digital connectivity to play an even greater part in everything from the tracking of material assets to effective task and project management. An interconnected construction site can give you an advantage in a competitive field and make you more appealing when it comes to winning crucial contracts.
Here are some key things you’ll want to keep in mind as you setup a productive network on your construction job sites:
Make Way for the Internet of Things
Widespread 5G is coming, and more and more construction tools are built with the Internet-of-Things (IoT) in mind. IoT-enabled devices are becoming increasingly prevalent on construction sites all over the country. These allow construction firms to access and manage tools remotely, deactivate wirelessly, and monitor performance, no matter where employees are.
The first step towards an IoT connected workplace is Bluetooth connectivity. There is already a wealth of asset-tracking devices such as Milwaukee Tick and DeWalt Tag that incorporate Bluetooth technology. These easy-to-attach devices can fit on your existing construction plant and provide remote real-time tracking of your tools so you can always account for their whereabouts.
Train Your Crew on the Value of a Networked Construction Site
Of course, any network or digital tool is only as efficient and beneficial as the people using it. And that means it’s integral that all crew members know how these digital tools will be beneficial to the site and how they can be used and accessed.
They need to be trained how to track and remotely access Bluetooth enabled tools. They need to understand the inherent efficiencies and how they will make their jobs easier by facilitating better project management and smoother operations. That means time spent on the job is more efficient and everyone gets to go home on time.
Invest in Advanced Tools that Provide More Comprehensive Data
While add-on Bluetooth enabled devices can provide the location of your assets at all times, plant manufacturers are now releasing a range of tools in the market which have the IoT baked into the crust. DeWalt’s Tool Connect series, for instance, is a range of hammer drills, impact drivers and other essentials which not only transmit their whereabouts continuously, but also provide performance and diagnostic data.
These can massively reduce downtime in the event of failure by enabling fast diagnostics and repair. As more and more manufacturers bring out their own equivalents, construction firms will have more choices than ever when it comes to establishing a network of smart and interconnected plant tools.
Boost Digital Efficiency with a Mesh Network
While Milwaukee has already produced some forward-thinking digital devices, the DeWalt brand has taken job site connectivity one step further with its new mesh network.
Most jobsite networks at the moment tend to have severe limitations, with access limited to small wireless networks running out of site networks and foremen using commercially available data plans from their cell phone providers.
DeWalt’s mesh network aims to increase the job site’s network footprint to provide faster, more reliable and more widespread internet access for all the hardware and software that will power the jobsite of tomorrow.
A mesh network liberates construction firms from needing to tether to a single smartphone or limited wireless network. As the market is filled with more network hardware and management hardware systems that are built with the unique needs of the construction industry in mind, it’s going to get easier than ever to create a reliably connected construction site.
Get the Most Out of Your Technology Investment
As your new interconnected devices become a more ubiquitous part of your operations, your every construction site will benefit from a fast and reliable advanced WiFi connection instead of relying on slower and clumsier one-to-one bluetooth connections.
As such, you’ll have a lot more time on your hands. You’ll be saved a lot of back and forth checking on personnel and tools. You’ll have a centralized repository for all the data you need allowing you to track supply delivery and get real-time status updates as well as tracking the whereabouts of employees and knowing how time is being spent without needing to physically be there.
With so much extra time on your hands, how will you refine your processes to ensure that you’re getting peak efficiency from your new tools?
Partner with an IT Service Provider for an Optimized Network from Day One
Of course, setting up a reliable mesh network brings its own challenges. Though the process can be complex, with the help of an IT service provider, you can get the job done quickly and efficiently, with construction IT services that are scalable in accordance with your business’s needs and budget.
ARK Solvers can set up a mesh network for you using the latest construction technology and tools to ensure your job site is as efficient as possible. Contact us today to learn more about our services and how we can help you properly set up your network on construction job sites.