This article originally appeared in the La Jolla Light
You hear a lot about technological updates either coming to construction or already in use, though maybe not yet widely in use. We at Murfey Company have pushed to become 100% cloud-based, which we believe is going to be the way of the future for construction companies. What does this all mean for you? Here’s a quick rundown on what we at Murfey Company are already utilizing for your building project as well as some exciting new developments in the pipes.
Construction Management Software
Most of the data on your project is digital. Gone are the days of files and files of physical papers, which can easily be lost or at least in the wrong place at the wrong time. Now, contractors and clients have access to a complete digital management platform to both analyze and run the entire project, which means the client, contractor, and building team can monitor the project simultaneously from home, the office, and the worksite, being immediately made aware of any updates. There are many apps that help contractors communicate more fully with the clients, including everything from design to materials to bidding and billing, human resource management, inventory, and equipment.
One of these tools we already have in place at the Murfey Company is BidRancher, our own proprietary software application resource we developed in-house, which gathers and compares bids for subcontractors. As a tool, BidRancher saves time by auto-emailing follow ups to subcontractors, adds in bids they submit so you don’t have to, and creates tabs that automatically organize bids into tabs so you can easily understand and follow all the data you’re receiving.
Murfey Company is uniquely positioned in our total incorporation of cloud-based technology. We use a suite of cloud-based applications, Software as a Service (SaaS) apps, and we have built our own server in the MS Azure cloud to house the one application that isn’t SaaS.
BIM: Building Information Modeling
This is the most exciting for us. BIM is 3D computer-aided drafting, which has been used for design of cars and furniture for a while. BIM renders digital blueprints and designs, increasing efficiency, and offers a 3D view of the structure, including structural engineering, the steel work, the duct work, and the electrical and plumbing.
This is especially useful in urban infill projects but can be used for standard, single-home builds and remodels. One of the goals with urban infill projects is to take a space that no one else wanted or could do anything with or that sat vacant for years and turn it into something usable. BIM can be combined with geographic information systems (GIS) to compare the design plans of the structure with the site logistics, and any pre-existing geographical and infrastructural constraints. Some construction software apps even calculate energy usage to determine the cost of heating the structure, as well as how much natural light each part of the structure will get throughout the day.
Yes, drones are becoming a regular feature on construction sites, especially for larger projects, in order to track the progress of a job (and help better project the timeline for completion), as well as to check on site safety. Drones can also do a better job of aerially mapping the site and monitoring the build in progress. The overall purpose is to offer a way to save time and money without compromising crew safety.
At Murfey Company, we understand that to best serve the needs of our clients and the community, we need the latest in technology to improve the overall process of a building project. Our goal is to be one of the foremost-thinking construction companies and developers when it comes to technology. For more information, visit us at www.collinsbuild.wpengine.com.