Is your construction company's IT system ready for growth?

The effects of the global financial crisis of 2008 are still being felt, with the first real signs of recovery only becoming visible now - six years lat...

Admin
|Sep 30|magazine10 min read

The effects of the global financial crisis of 2008 are still being felt, with the first real signs of recovery only becoming visible now - six years later. Construction companies were affected particularly badly, forcing many firms to radically alter their operations just to survive. But now that there are signs of growth on the horizon, are your IT systems ready? Will they help or hinder your recovery?

Increased demand

Taking on a new construction project can force your company to grow in size, almost overnight. As work begins on site, your workforce could increase by almost ten times, placing a large strain on your existing IT systems.

Without a truly scalable construction software platform in place, construction companies may find that they are unable to deliver the information their employees need. This could result in costly delays and project overruns.

Maturity

Construction company’s processes were very different ten years ago, yet many firms still rely on legacy systems to underpin their operations. If your operating processes no longer match those hard coded into the software, your IT will be holding you back.

The CIO is then faced with a dilemma. Pay for expensive re-coding of existing systems to match operational needs, or replace them with more modern alternatives. The rising costs of supporting legacy systems should, when understood, make that decision a lot easier.

“Seventy to eighty percent of….IT spending was on maintaining legacy systems rather than investing in improvements. That may actually be an under-estimate.” Legacy Systems: A Ticking Technology Time Bomb

Flexibility

Operational pressures will have already forced construction companies to adjust their processes - and they will undoubtedly change again in the near future. Can your legacy system be easily customised to support these changes?

The adoption of a fully-configurable construction software platform that supports process changes will be far more cost effective in the long term. The software will then support and drive improvements and efficiencies, helping your business achieve more.

Consolidation

As your business has grown, new demands will have needed individual solutions. This often leads to a patchwork IT systems, with a collection of applications being used by different business units.

Important data is spread across these platforms making it virtually impossible to obtain an instant understanding of any project. Determining which version of the information is the “truth” is harder still.

The answer is to consolidate these disparate systems into a single platform, thereby ensuring you only ever have one version of the truth. In doing so, making decisions based upon a better understanding of likely project outcomes easier and more accurate.

How to stop IT holding you back

Construction companies looking for a strategic advantage through IT need to select software that:

·       Is scalable enough to support massive peaks in demand.

·       Can be configured to closely match your internal business processes.

·       Flexes with changing demands and strategies.

·       Replaces existing disparate systems to deliver one version of the truth.

Learn more about IT as a driver of success in our free eGuide: The changing place of IT in the construction industry’.