Survey highlights a new era of jobsite data

jobsite data trimble

Contractors report the increased availability of jobsite data helps improve project outcomes like budget, productivity and profitability  

A new report on the gathering and use of jobsite data is highlighting a sea change in the way project data is gathered and analyzed across the industry.

The report, released by Dodge Data & Analytics, in collaboration with construction management software provider Viewpoint, a Trimble company, reveals that the availability of data is poised to improve key project outcomes according to construction managers, specialty trade contractors and design/build firms surveyed.

Viewpoint is a provider of integrated software solutions for the construction industry. Viewpoint software enables customers to integrate operations across the office, team and field to improve project profitability, enhance productivity, manage risk and effectively collaborate across the broad construction ecosystem.

With nearly 8,000 clients, including more than 40 per cent of the ENR 400, Viewpoint’s innovations provide fully integrated operations across financial and HR systems, project management tools and mobile field solutions.

Increased tech use

Tied to increased technology use and advancements, 64 per cent of those who participated in the report said that their ability to gather and analyze jobsite data has improved or improved significantly.

The report, titled Improving Performance with Project Data SmartMarket Report: How Improved Collection and Analysis is Leading to the Digital Transformation of the Construction Industry, reveals that contractors believe improvements in jobsite data collection will bring impactful change in the next three years, driving the industry’s digital transformation.

If critical jobsite data normalization can be accomplished, the results can increase key project outcomes such as budget, productivity and profitability.

The findings also reveal some important calls to action for continuous improvement in the industry: 

  • Contractors using commercial software to gather jobsite data report significantly higher satisfaction rates than those using paper forms or spreadsheets.
  • Many contractors still have concerns about storing their data in the cloud, and in particular the security of cloud-stored jobsite data. Both general contractors and specialty trades list security concerns as the top reason for not managing data in the cloud, and among those surveyed, 65 per cent still use on-premise servers. 
  • While 86 per cent of respondents are relying on anti-malware software to address data security, only 45 per cent of those surveyed have implemented employee compliance training. 

“Gathering siloed data from across their organization to analyze and improve project outcomes is a key challenge we work with clients to overcome daily,” said Viewpoint chief product and strategy officer Matt Harris.

“Contractors are demanding easier, better and more consistent collection of data — from the office, across their extended teams and into the field — in order to enable better measurement of project performance and drive toward greater gains.”

The report also points to current and emerging means of gathering jobsite data via apps, cameras, sensors and wearables.

“We think this is a critical area to watch in the future,” said Steve Jones, senior director of industry insights research at Dodge Data & Analytics.

“The smarter jobsite will transform the industry, but companies need their data gathering and analytics fundamentals in place before they can fully profit from all of the exciting technology that is now emerging, funded by an influx of venture capital, and directly addressing industry needs to reduce risk, improve productivity and improve safety.”

Jobsite data survey methodology

An online survey of contractors was conducted by Dodge Data & Analytics. A total of 187 responses are included in the analysis, including 140 prime contractors (general contractors, construction managers, construction design/contracting firms, design-builders and others) and 47 specialty trade contractors.