There is no industry on the planet that needs organized Project Management tools as much as the Architecture, Engineering & Construction (AEC) community. Sadly, they are also the industry most lagging in implementing the technology tools they need to be both competitive and profitable. No other industry deals with such an excess of documentation, communication, and coordination between multiple designers, vendors, contractors, etc. Industry surveys show that fewer than 30% of AEC firms feel they are effectively using technology in managing their projects. The disconnect results from two issues:
The cost of purchasing/implementing new software
The downtime and budget impact of rolling out new software
I hear those objections all the time from new clients and I certainly understand them. I spent decades on the design side of the table, responsible for controlling costs and making sure new processes didn’t post negatively against my own project budgets. The problem is, by not implementing advanced technologies, you’re killing the budget on every single job in the company! At the end of the day you have to take the plunge, even if it scares you. Your competitors are going to and they will undercut every bid you put out because they were willing to make the needed up-front investment that you’ve been putting off. The days of using file folders, saving emails in your Inbox forever, and counting on IT to find your missing files is gone. If you want to stay competitive, you need to move to an intelligent, collaborative, design environment.
The good news is most of you already have the software you need to get started, you just don’t know it. If you’re firm is using Office 365, you already have SharePoint Online, a simple cloud solution for hosting your files so they’re available to anyone/anywhere/anytime. You can integrate your emails into SharePoint folders, calendar and team structures to organize and control all your vital project information in one secure, accessible, location. You can also make use of Microsoft Planner and Project tools to handle scheduling, tasks, and a myriad of other PM functions . . . all with software you may already own! If you haven’t made the move to Office 365 yet, or aren’t sure how to structure or make use of those tools in an AEC environment, ZenTek Consultants is here to help. We work extensively in the AEC world and fully understand what a design firm’s needs are when it comes to working with Microsoft tools. Whether you’re looking to implement some basic file and email sharing or looking for advanced CRM and Project management tools, we’re your start point. Let’s start a conversation about how to put you ahead of the pack, instead of trailing your competition.