Here at the FieldLens command center, we like to imagine a world where it is standard procedure for construction companies to distribute smartphones and tablets to all of their employees. But we’re realistic and we know we have some time until that happens. In the meantime, we’re loving the ever increasing BYOD movement. We love BYOD for many reasons, but for today we’re going to focus on its enormous potential to improve construction jobsite safety.
BYOD and the Construction Jobsite
Bring Your Own Device allows employees to bring their own mobile device to work, and to use it for work related purposes. According to recently published BYOD research, more than half of US workers are using their own device on-the-job, even if their company does not have a BYOD policy in place. The same study showed that more than 80% of workers believe mobile devices like smartphones and tablets are or will become imperative to being able to perform one’s job.
The construction industry has some catching up to do in terms of adopting new technologies to their fullest potential, but the industry is rapidly moving in a more technological direction as evidenced by the range and variety of construction related mobile apps becoming available to construction professionals, and the proliferation of smartphones and tablets on construction jobsites. BYOD helps fill in the gaps where companies cannot or will not provide employees with the mobile tools that can help them be more efficient…and safer.
Construction jobsite safety is of paramount importance to everyone on the jobsite, and BYOD helps improve it.
Here are 4 ways we find BYOD helps improve construction jobsite safety:
Record and Share Safety Concerns
Mobile devices allow users to instantly record, save and share safety issues using photos and video. Detailed records can be kept and data analyzed to minimize risk to everyone on the jobsite.
Real Time Communication
A major benefit of mobile devices is the fact that they allow you to communicate via voice and text in real time. Real time communication means that workflow remains steady and there is no time wasted when problems arise.
Access to the Cloud
Apps like Google Drive and Dropbox provide all project team members access to the same information in real time, meaning reactions happen more quickly. Updates to a safety audit, for example, can be viewed by the entire project team as soon as they occur. This minimizes safety issues that occur from time delay, as well as safety issues that occur because of team members unaware of changes.
Taking photos and videos are two features that come with every mobile device, and they are unquestionably powerful jobsite tools. Apps add to a construction professional’s mobile toolbox, meaning that tools required to do a job are never further than your phone or tablet. These include measuring, flashlights, complicated calculation, tracking tasks, accurately converting units, and so much more. Forgetting a tool no longer means having to leave a job unfinished. Your smartphone and tablet can do just about everything except hammer that nail for you, and today’s apps are incredibly reliable in generating the information you need.
We’d be remiss if we didn’t touch on the fact that many industry leaders question the security of jobsite data on BYOD vs. company owned devices. Construction jobs often contain highly sensitive information, and BYOD minimizes a company’s ability to protect classified information and/or data. Constructech recently published a brief overview of this issue, and we’d encourage you to give it a read to understand the controversy surrounding BYOD. Of course, with every problem come opportunity, and company Enterpriod has developed software to ensure your company and your personal information are kept private and secure when dealing with BYOD.
We know there are many, many other ways BYOD improves construction jobsite safety. Got any tips? Come on over to our twitter page and share your BYOD safety tips with our community.