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4 reasons to use technology in land development

Feb 6, 2020 8:53:11 AM

How to improve productivity on and off the field

In 2019, 47% of construction companies admitted to spending less than 1% of annual sales volume on construction technology. And after years of manual entry into spreadsheets, it’s understandable why people are hesitant to make the switch to workflow and automation technology. 

But while Gartner’s prediction that technology usage will increase across the industry by 6% a year, the land development and construction industry is doing a spectacular job defying that statistic with a 1% increase in the past year. 

While we’ve all heard the saying “Why fix something that isn't broken,” professionals in the land development industry should consider changing processes before they break --or lead to failure. Because making the switch while everything is running smoothly won’t cost you much - but waiting until system failure, data error or timeline extension are just a few of the implicit costs to staying stuck in the same systems. 

The world is innovating and improving every day -- why not join? By bringing technology on board, you can find solutions tailored just for land development that makes your work safer, easier and more reliable than ever. Not convinced yet? Check out our list of why you should consider making the switch to land development software tools in 2020: 

1. Automation and optimized resources

McKinsey estimates that $1.63 trillion could be saved each year with infrastructure productivity changes. And with labor shortage becoming an increasingly large problem, it’s more important than ever to make sure you’re optimizing your resources and leaving no money on the table.

Integrating technology into your everyday practices can make the most out of your team’s time and offload the manual tasks that take up time. Some construction projects are even using robots for repetitive and manual activities like tiling, bricklaying, welding and spool fabrication. 

By offloading these repetitive tasks to Artificial intelligence, the workers can focus on the niche-level experience they’re needed for without worrying about time-consuming labor. Additionally, most land development software includes built-in workflows for procedures so it’s often easier to gather accurate and organized information for others. 

2. Digital collaboration and mobility. 

Because your data is stored on the cloud, it’s accessible anywhere, anytime. All you need is a device with internet capabilities and you can see directly into your team’s work. Leverage construction collaboration tools and productivity software to improve communication across teams. Using software to do this can allow workers to communicate instantly about a change/error that will make the project longer or increase prices. 

Poor data communication has a high cost -- it can halt field productivity, waste time on resolving basic problems and research and even cause repurchasing and rebuilding. Nobody wants to backtrack, especially not if you have to explain why to your clients. 

To combat this, technology in the land development space has evolved to solve every and any problem -- finding and locating land property information like zoning codes, to integrating project timelines with your supply chain partners. Using these resources will not only save you time and effort from doing it yourself but will also remove the risk associated with human error. It’s a win-win. 

3. Internet of Things and advanced analytics. 

McKinsey found that large projects typically take 20% longer to finish than schedule and can cost 80% over budget..meaning the time and resources you put into planning are almost more valuable than the actual work itself. 

The Internet of Things allows your technology to become “intelligent” and connect with each other -- construction machinery, equipment and materials could communicate to capture critical performance parameters to save time and money on repairing equipment, managing inventory and ordering materials, quality control and safety. 

Most software for this industry include data analytics and project management tools that make planning, executing and optimizing your projects as easy as pressing a button (and oftentimes, it is). On and off the field, your processes for collecting organization and communication will become centralized and efficient. Using land development tools like PlanGrid makes storing and accessing data easier, more secure and reducing the possibility of inaccurate or lost information. 

4. Higher-definition organization tools

Surprises and unexpected delays are often why projects run over budget, timeline and resources. While it’s difficult to predict everything from geological surprises to zoning or building code compliance issues, there are more advanced ways to mitigate these risks. 

Rather than manually searching for property information, there are tools that make finding and sharing the zoning and building code data easier than ever. What’s more, it can be accessed anywhere, anytime. 

Additionally, new technologies that elevate surveying and geolocation provide high ROI because they detect discrepancies between ground conditions and possible hindrances to project scope and design that would cause delays and problems down the road. These tools can integrate with your other project management tools -- so you can share and collaborate with different pieces of data, different teammates and different projects all on your device of choice. 

Take the time to find the right products

It’s no easy task deciding what (and when) to trust a product for your own company. There’s so much to consider -- ease of implementation, user-friendliness, cost, and integrations with your other software. 

Remember that there should be an annual ROI between 110%-200%. Rushing into the wrong technology for your company might be more expensive than it’s worth, and you need to adequately research and balance all of the right metrics for your own goals and growth. 

PermitDocs - the ultimate property information tool


Get ahead and stay ahead of the industry with innovation driven by problem-solvers just like you.  

PermitDocs is your all-in-one source for land development information – we don’t just supply the municipality codes at a click, we also provide all of the zoning and building codes relevant for your projects. 

And, PermitDocs allows you to share, communicate and collaborate over all of this land information – bringing the boots and the suits together so that your team can communicate in real-time, reduce risk while planning and building, and feel confident that you’re making well-informed decisions with reliable information. 

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