The construction lifecycle can present many challenges to electrical contractors. In fact, many challenges occur in the preconstruction phase. Issues such as trying to keep track of bid information, ineffective communication, and not being able to have real-time insights on performance once the project is underway can slow down production and even risk the loss of bids. Failure to remain responsive to client needs can not only interfere with their own success but the success of the entire process.
However, technology is changing the way electrical contractors approach their work. Here’s how they can use technology to overcome common challenges.
Offsite construction is becoming more popular especially for projects with repetitive floorplans. Also known as prefabrication, the work is conducted at a manufacturing plant with workers assigned a task at a series of stations. This method ensures consistency while also improving quality control. These offsite construction modules include all stages of building from basic structure to complete finishes and electrical wiring. Electrical contractors improve productivity through offsite construction as it reduces installation time. With these efficiencies, electrical contractors can increase how many jobs they can take on, with expansion to more complex work.
Software & Mobile Apps
It’s no secret there is software and mobile apps available to assist with just about anything. This includes many aspects of construction. Common construction challenges become more efficient thanks to features such as:
- -Project management
- -Field reporting
- -Real-time analysis for efficiencies
When these processes are streamlined productivity is improved and collaboration and communication become more effective. Decisions can be made in real time, while data reporting continues to feed valuable information to electrical contractors. Proven efficiency measures work to gain new clients and win out more bids. As well, electrical contractors continuously improve performance, saving time and money for both current and future projects
Building Information Modeling (BIM)
BIM uses digital building renderings in 3D models to improve collaboration, design, and construction. Models allow all stakeholders to consider not only design but functional aspects of the building as well. As a result, electrical contractors gain valuable insights that can help make the building more user friendly. For example, in an open-concept office design, they can assess workstations and look for ways to improve connectivity, electrical outlets, lighting and more so staff become more comfortable and productive. Because the models can be changed in real time, electrical contractors remain up to date on changes, so they continue to be more responsive to meet the needs of their clients. BIM allows electrical contractors to:
-Communicate quickly to team members with up-to-date information instantly.
-Follow building progress to spot potential issues using an adaptable model that shows each stage of the construction process for improved planning at each phase of construction
-Use AR to walk a construction site virtually and compare an overlay of a BIM model to the current construction phase.
-Use the model as a checklist for work completion and create a daily report of their progress.
Many common challenges electrical contractors face both preconstruction and once the project is underway can be overcome with technology. Offsite construction, software, apps, and BIM work together to empower contractors to become proactive, productive, and responsive to client needs.