There has been much ‘noise’ about the continued need for change, and the need to modernise the construction industry and property sector, let alone sustainability and well-being of its professionals. More and more sophisticated ways are being promoted to capitalise on big data and smart data emanating from the built environment and new roles to harness it promised. There is a need to understand not only how lean construction and BIM but also the use of mobile digital solutions can improve sustainability and well-being and lead to greater productivity.
Daily it seems we are informed on the numerous digital benefits of advanced technology, internet of things (IoT), drones, robotics, virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), nanotechnology, design for manufacture and assembly, BIM and so on. These are all fascinating and important innovations while in the background some nagging concerns remain.
Sustainability and well-being questions arise
- What can we easily and efficiently do about these concerns?
- Are sustainability and worker well-being improvements really out of our reach?
- Surely every paper-saving action counts on the road to achieving zero carbon construction processes?
- Should easily recognisable steps be taken day-by-day by as many as possible to reduce worker stress?
To answer these questions, some say there is a need, first and foremost, to learn from nature itself, as in biophilic design.
- In human terms this means learning from evolution itself. It means mastering the art of crawling before walking before running – metaphorically taking ‘one step at a time.’
- In technological terms this means mastering the art of digitisation and mobilisation to be able to become not only more productive but to become more sustainable and to enhance well-being.
Learning to digitise and mobilise construction & property management processes
Digitisation signifies ‘crawling.’ It’s the first bold action towards participating and engaging meaningfully with the world directly improving sustainability – a milestone in any organisation’s history.
Learning to digitise, means quite simply learning to eradicate all paper-based processes through digital means. In doing so, the power of automation can be harnessed, to simplify and streamline digital processes.
Through digitisation and digital document storage capability, a digital archive can be created instead of a paper based archiving system.
Mobilisation signifies walking. It’s the second key action towards participating and engaging meaningfully with the industry directly improving worker wellbeing, another milestone in any organisation’s evolution.
Learning to mobilise, means learning to equip workers with mobile solutions. In doing so, this allows them to work more flexibly, remotely if needed and improve well-being.
Through mobilisation and intuitive design consideration, workers can operate more flexibly, in less stressful conditions.
The dream -v- the reality
The dream : Imagine for a moment you have to step away from your current situation for a while and live/work in a land beside coral reefs with just the bare essentials. You pack little baggage and carry only what is essential, but this includes a pc/tablet and possibly a smartphone to allow you to continue to operate in a similar way. On the face of it your conditions may appear limited but with the technology you’re equipped with, you can allow you to enjoy living and working remotely where you are in ’paradise,’ paper-free and stress-free with minimum impact on your surrounding environment.
The reality : Zoom back to the ‘real’ world and you will observe a global construction industry and property sector that still to a large extent relies on paper and unsustainable practices within an increasingly stressed and unproductive society.
In this context, is it surprising that we are seeing the downfall of some major construction businesses today?
Research has shown that the continuation of unproductive practice not only continues the negative effects of global warming on climate change but also adversely impacts worker mental health and well-being.
There are some shocking figures to bear in mind. For example :
- Academic research reveals construction generates carbon dioxide (CO2) contributing to 23% percent of global warming from the ‘greenhouse effect.’
- A spokesman who represents the UK Health in Construction Leadership Group (HCLG) reported last year that 2 people per week in construction take their lives.
Get digital. Get mobile. Get productive.
Make the dream real! Deploy technological solutions to reduce your use of paper and become stress-free.
Throughout the lifecycle of a project sustainability and well-being benefits can be reaped through the mobilisation of workers through their use of digital devices not only in the office but in the field.
In this way basic construction and property management processes, such as daily logging to a site diary, management reporting, task management and quality compliance processes can be digitised across project teams from the outset of a project. This enables your entire construction workforce to then mobilise before more specific and advanced solutions relating to higher BIM maturity levels become valuable. There are easy-to-use technological solutions available for this, deployable on a large scale, that will contribute to improving productivity.
Investment in mobile digital solutions would ensure that environmental and well-being drivers for productivity improvement remain top concerns. Everyone from site workers with smartphones in his or her pocket to construction managers with tablets will notice the immediate change and the usefulness of the devices he or she may already have.
The sustainability, well-being and productivity outcomes gained by mobile digital solutions, minimised travel requirements and reduced work duplication could transform construction workers well-being and ultimately contribute to saving lives through improvements to mental health.
A new paradigm – technobiophilia?
Scan your organisation for early opportunities to derive not only productivity but also sustainability and user well-being benefits from the combined benefits of digitisation and mobilisation.
Promoting the use of mobile digital solutions during construction management or real estate management processes, whether in the office or in the field, can assist you in benchmarking your future activities and help you earn user trust, long before robots manage your sites.
They can even positively contribute to reducing your business’s carbon footprint and improve your worker satisfaction.
You are reponsible for your business environment. Perhaps the time is right to reap the combined benefits of technology with biophilic ideology through a new technobiophilic paradigm?
Why not try BatiScript today?