Technology Challenges Faced by the Construction Vertical

Posted on: November 29th, 2014 by jiml | No Comments

Different vertical markets often have differing IT needs. Let’s take the case of a vertical that we at Colden Company work with very frequently – the construction vertical.

There are unique challenges that this industry has that other industries do not face. For example, it is often joked that in construction, whoever messes up the estimate the most gets the job. In other words, it is the lowest bidder who often wins, and if you come in the lowest based on a mistake, that directly impacts your profitability on the job. Other parts of the world might work differently where a job is defined down to the material level and each bidder bids on the exact same list. In a case like this, the true low bidder often wins the job. The consequence of our system of bidding is that construction companies can face damaging losses from a job estimated poorly. That one bad job can wipe out the profits of many good jobs, leading construction companies to often be cautious with their IT spends. The consequence is an increased importance that IT spending be in the right areas on the right technologies that can help profitability.

Getting information to and from job sites is also a unique challenge that other verticals may not face. Getting job information into your Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system in a timely fashion can help catch problems early and save a job from turning unprofitable. Mobile technology has been a great advantage for this industry, helping facilitate the process of getting information from the field to the office and vice versa. There is more technology available today than ever before to do this. From iPads, to Surface Pro tablets, to some of the gigantic phones (phablets) that are now available, communication is not the problem. Finding the right device that works with the software you need for data integration is the challenge. Consequently, what may be the right tool for one company is often not the right tool for another. For example, a Colden Company customer approached us asking how they can utilize iPads in the field; their competitor was already doing so and they wanted to level the playing field. The software our customer was using was Windows-based, so the iPad was not the best choice. We fitted our customer with a fleet of Microsoft Surface Pro tablets, running Windows 8.1, which allowed them to transfer information back and forth into their accounting system seamlessly. It is all about properly analyzing the needs and fitting the right solution.

At Colden Company, we work with our customers to maximize the business benefits of technology by properly aligning technology purchases to business needs. We often say that technology for the sake of technology does not solve anyone’s problems. Technology that solves a business need is what we do for our customers. Another saying we often use is “if you are running your business the same way you were a few years ago, you are not staying the same, you are falling behind”. If you are not utilizing mobile technology, your competition likely is.

What part of your business would you like to run more efficiently utilizing mobile technology? Contact us to discuss how we can help. Call us at (888) 600-4560, email us at info@coldencompany.com, or see us on Facebook or Twitter (@coldenco).






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