On many construction projects today, there is still a heavy reliance on manual and paper-based workflows, with the pace of digitalisation in the sector far slower than other global industries. Construction projects involve multiple stakeholders both on-site and off-site – including head office, developers, site workers, contractors and subcontractors, and architects and designers. Relying on paper records and not having a consistent channel for communication and data sharing in place creates inefficiencies and hampers productivity. This has a knock-on effect on the bottom-line and means tight profit margins will continue to be squeezed. Indeed, research we conducted this year found the average profit margin for a construction project is just over two per cent.
What’s more, as COVID-19 continues to present challenges, digitalisation will be crucial to how successfully the sector can bounce back. To return to normal levels of work as quickly and safely as possible, companies will need to restart development and operations rapidly and keep them running efficiently. Digitalisation is also key to making the most of future revenue opportunities like the development of smart cities and the drive towards ‘green’ construction. Yet, our recent research found that almost half (47 per cent) of respondents believe the construction sector does not have the digital capability to meet the demands of a smart city.
A new approach is needed, and now is the perfect time to adopt digital tools that will optimise operations and drive transformation. Finalcad’s CEO, Franck Le Tendre, discussed this recently in an interview with BFM TV. Franck said:
“By prioritising digitalisation now, construction companies will be able to tap into future trends like smart cities and green construction. This will enable them to play their part in creating a more sustainable future as well as access new revenue streams that will be key to long-term recovery.”
To ensure successful and scalable digital transformation and support profitability in the future a coordinated approach across the company is needed. This is where IT departments and CIOs have a central role to play. Typically, those in charge of digital transformation in construction firms don’t have a construction background but they are digitally skilled. These CIOs and IT leaders spend a lot of their time thinking about how to apply technology and digital tools to the industry, but they are often based off-site and struggle with getting ‘buy-in’ from those on-site.
One way that CIOs and IT leaders can overcome this resistance and drive digitalisation company-wide is putting tools in place that are specifically designed for construction environments. At Finalcad, we bring a blend of tech savvy and construction knowledge together to meet this need. The Finalcad platform has been developed by an expert team with deep industry knowledge to empower scalable and lasting change. The processes and workflows embedded in Finalcad are also designed primarily with the user in mind and with a focus on ‘ease of use’. This means all stakeholders can use Finalcad without needing extensive training, which is paramount to maximising adoption and boosting ROI.
It’s clear that construction companies have to become digitally-driven organisations in order to thrive now and to prepare themselves for the future. CIOs and IT leaders will be at the forefront of this change.
If you’re in charge of digital transformation in your company and would like to find out how Finalcad can help: