How Real Time Reporting Improves Safety and Efficiency
Cloud computing and the ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) are gradually transforming the way that the construction industry collects and manages information. We can, for example, use 3D laser scanning to quickly create detailed models of sites, buildings and assets to help with planning, design and the recording of ‘as built’ data.
Osborne has replaced paper based completion records with smart data capture via smartphones and tablet computers. Site based employees record the completion information for their work at the point of creation into a cloud hosted database. A remote project manager or customer can see the progress in real time and review the data submission without waiting.
The data view is specific to the employee – so project managers and customers only get the data that is relevant to them. There’s no need to read through entire documents or details they are not interested in.
The technology also addresses the long standing issues of collecting ‘as built’ data to support the technical handover of assets. This is no longer an additional task, much of the data is recorded live.
We’ve employed these human data capture solutions at numerous rail and highways sites and had a positive response from the site teams. They have more time for carrying out value added work instead of having to locate, complete, scan and store documents. Remote workers can carry out their tasks without having to interrupt on-going construction work as they can find the information they need via the cloud service instead of asking for it directly.
IoT technology uses sensors that can communicate with the world around them to report back on issues. Items of plant and equipment can automatically register when and where they are in use. Managers can then ensure controls are not exceeded. For example, a device can be fitted to equipment to measure Hand Arm Vibrations (HAVs) and report back the usage time and warn of an impending breach.
We also have items of plant that directly report their location via GPS sensors – they react with the 3D design model of the site to ensure they are excavating in exactly the right place according to the model. The technology also helps to manage the utilisation of plant and machinery across all of our projects.
Site security also has IoT features such as access gates that report who has entered, when they entered and their working limits to ensure they don’t exceed fatigue requirements. All this data is reported live via cloud services back to the central management who can interrogate it during their working day.
Real time reporting has many benefits and cloud computing makes the data we capture easy to access anywhere and at any time. Above all it helps us to work proactively instead of reactively.