Sector - Software & Technology
Importance of Connectivity in Construction
Nick Sacke is Head of IoT and Products, at Comms365 in this feature for Construction Online he discusses the importance of high quality, reliable internet connectivity within the industry.
The European construction industry is gradually opening back up after months of lockdown following the recent pandemic. As firms face increasing pressure to get back on track and deliver against rising demand, it’s widely recognised that the construction industry has long suffered a reputation for regularly delivering projects later than expected, and often over-budget. Even though the sector is rebounding post-Covid, the industry remains cautious with furloughed staff, redundancies and supply chain disruptions, meaning that firms will need to do a lot more with fewer resources for the foreseeable future.
To reduce the further impact of the challenges the industry faces of time and project management, high speed, portable and reliable Internet connectivity can be installed so that the adoption of new technology and smarter processes can happen on site. Tangible benefits for construction firms can at last be delivered by deploying high performance units to provide Internet connectivity from day one at existing and new sites.
Instant internet connectivity on site
Internet connectivity is a necessity for businesses in virtually every industry, and construction is no exception. Crucially, however, it remains a fundamental hurdle that the industry must overcome if it is to create a solid foundation for providing stable Internet performance on site and get sites ready to adopt and use all new, digital innovation.
The latest technology, software and applications, that are essential for the industry to innovate and keep up with demand, function better with high speed, portable and reliable internet network connectivity. To overcome the challenge of getting connectivity enabled at sites, located in Green or Brownfield locations where often there is no existing connection, portable wireless units can be installed. As internet connectivity is no longer restricted to fixed-line provision only, companies can invest in a communications resource that truly satisfies business Internet needs – irrespective of location.
Advanced bonded Internet solutions enable organisations to add important resilience capability to their Internet connection and build in contingency by combining Internet connections from different carriers to create a single ‘virtual internet pipe’. Precise performance management of the unit can be included along with management of data usage, to ensure there is control over costs and quality. With combined bandwidth and enhanced reliable internet performance integrated into a portable solution, it is highly suitable for immediate deployment situations; especially if Internet services are required urgently. In many cases, communications infrastructure is either missing, needs repairing or may take several weeks to secure an install date.
Foundations for change
With rapid advances in technology and the advent of cloud based solutions, the way we work and interact has drastically changed. Technology innovation has led industries to continually strive to be more efficient, productive and cost effective. Yet, when it comes to the world of construction, investment in IT has remained low in comparison to other industries. The market has been hampered by technical challenges relating to projects that can be large, complex and geographically dispersed. Combined with varying proficiency and maturity levels of smaller subcontractors, advancing at scale has been difficult and has subsequently led to the slow progress of the digitisation of the construction industry.
Despite these challenges, the technology available to construction firms has advanced rapidly and we are now starting to see examples of how advances in digital technology can deliver efficiency and productivity opportunities at the start of all projects – truly revolutionising the construction sites of the past. Drones, robotics, 3D printing and augmented reality are no longer works of fiction but can be adopted by forward thinking firms looking to capitalise on the benefits that embracing innovation can bring to the construction site. All of these innovations require high quality, reliable internet network resources to function and deliver benefit in the field.
The construction industry must embrace digital advances and adopt smarter processes and technology to stay competitive. It must set aside outdated processes and management methods to make this a reality. To enable this digital operations future, the basics of site internet connectivity have to be in place.
So, how can construction firms ensure that a high quality, reliable Internet network connection is established quickly at a new site to ensure lack of connectivity does not negatively impact projects? By working with an ecosystem of experienced and trusted providers who can supply the connectivity solution and services that sites require. The industry will then be able to continually benefit from the opportunities that the latest advances in technology innovation for business operations present. The potential rewards to firms that capitalise on digitisation will be transformative.
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