Anytime, anywhere connectivity for mobile devices may seem like a given in modern society, but contractors know the reality. Wi-Fi or cellular connectivity is not always available where heavy civil construction takes place. Even when it is, it may not be the most efficient way for some companies to use essential construction management software in the field.
B2W mobile apps empower contractors to use features B2W Track, Schedule, Maintain and Inform in offline as well as online modes. The apps download operational data (like employee, equipment and job lists), reports and forms in advance, when they are connected. Inspection and construction safety forms, field logs, repair requests and any other data captured in the offline mode is stored in the app. Synching is quick and easy, once a connection is established.
The online and offline options keep processes and user experiences consistent for B2W Software users and ensure that the construction project management, data collection, heavy equipment maintenance and resource scheduling work keeps flowing without interruption. Here’s why that’s an advantage.
B2W mobile apps allow contractors to work in offline as well as online modes.
You can’t get a connection
Heavy construction can take place in isolated areas where cellular data or Internet connectivity just isn’t possible. This is a frequent challenge in mining, marine and energy sectors and for a wide range of infrastructure projects in remote locations.
Connectivity can even be spotty in heavily populated settings. Underground projects are an example. Urban areas, where networks can be overloaded and slow, are another. Fortunately, in most of these scenarios, employees using mobile devices in an offline mode return to a jobsite trailer, office, hotel or other site where they can connect and synch nightly or at least weekly.
You don’t want a connection
Wait, what? Not being online 24/7 may seem strange in this day and age, but there are reasons why construction companies may not want full-time connectivity.
Money is the big one. The cost of data plans and data utilization climbs with the number of devices in use and the amount of data being communicated. Maintaining Wi-Fi capacity at jobsites can also be costly. Convenience and real-time communication often justify the expense, but there are cases where working offline and synching later is more cost effective.
A workflow based on offline utilization may also allow contractors to issue mobile devices that are far less expensive than tablets or phones providing cellular data capabilities and requiring a data plan.
Finally, working offline eliminates digital distraction among employees. Checking Facebook or fantasy football lineups once in a while may not be a big deal but, for some employees and companies, online activity unrelated to immediate work requirements is a drain on productivity. Eliminating the connectivity eliminates the temptation.
Mobile capabilities continue to grow in importance for the construction sector, particularly for accurate, timely data capture in the field. With the B2W Platform, including the latest mobile apps, contractors have the advantage of accessing those capabilities with or without an online connection.