It seems that every week, I hear about or I am approached about a new software, gadget or technology. It is enough to make your head spin! But how does one make sense of all these new capabilities & select the ones that we will need to stay competitive. From experience, I have created a little questionnaire to weed out the good from the not so good:
- Does the technology decrease work hours? Is this technology going to speed up one of our work processes? For instance Smart Phones make it faster to email from our construction sites versus having to walk back to a site office & definitely has decreased the work hours for our superintendents, so that is a no-brainer.
- Is the technology free of work duplication? Unfortunately there are a lot of great software in the market that overlap with the capabilities of other software. So often you have to weigh one against the other to truly decipher the potential benefits & which ones are just causing more work for your staff.
- Is it User-Friendly? How easy will it be to train staff? You must really understand the learning curve & how it will effect productivity. Unfortunately in the construction industry we often have field employees that are resistant to technology. ANF Group is really fortunate to employ tech-savvy field employees but even our people need good support when introducing new technology.
- Is the technology a passing trend or new standard? You certainly want to stay current on your industry’s technology. However, you must look past the fancy displays, to see how this technology is being embraced. We all want to be trailblazers in the industry. But before you install a Retinal Scan at the entrance of your construction site for security. Look before you leap! All these new technologies have a cost & if you are the only one using them then you are the only one carrying these costs in your bottom line, so it better be functional & practical.
- Does this technology hold data & what I can I do with this data? By now you have heard of overwhelming term “Big Data”. All data big or small is useless if you are not able to harness it, share it and query it. It is important that you choose technology that can add to your collection of useable data.