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Fostering smart construction site solutions with a temporary network

Author: Poornima Apte

Temporary networks are one of several essential construction site solutions that help organizations stay on target with major work projects. A temporary network provides a seamless extension of company infrastructures, thereby solving for communications challenges site managers face while waiting for a primary, or semi-permanent, network.

Better productivity through better connectivity

The construction industry, like so many others, is undergoing rapid digitization. Intelligent processes such as building information modeling are helping stakeholders collaborate no matter where they are. Construction industry solutions such as geo-fencing, the creation of virtual boundaries around a job area, are helping to accurately measure worker hours. IoT-connected equipment and drones are driving and delivering data insights, and artificial intelligence is being used to further smart construction.

No matter the extent of a company's digital maturity, though, fundamental communication and connectivity challenges persist on most job sites. Smart construction site solutions can address such challenges as:

  • Unreliable communication equipment on the job site. Inadequate connectivity can impede communications between job-site managers and workers working way up in a high-rise.
  • Temperamental Unreliable connectivity between the job site and headquarters. Tracking construction project assets is complicated at the best of times, let alone when fractured communications leave job sites in the dark. Project managers need to access digital blueprints and work files to monitor progress and changes to designs. Remote sites need to be able to connect to the company's enterprise resource planning software to communicate with the home office.
  • Solutions that can't withstand construction environments. Hardware used on the job site needs to be rugged and function as expected under job site conditions.
  • Time sensitive setups. Having the ability to deliver job site communications before the work begins, is a key part of delivering phases on time and on budget.

Advantages of a temporary network

Primary, or semi-permanent networks provide long-term stability, but they take a long time to get set up, and construction sites can't afford delays. A temporary network that checks all the communication boxes can bridge the gap and enable effective construction site connectivity solutions so that crews can work more efficiently.

Effective construction site solutions need to factor in:

  • Security. Wireless routers and networks can share data securely across job sites and with the home office. Secure networks ensure that every employee works with the same real-time information, helping to avoid costly project delays.
  • Mobility. Workers need to communicate with project managers on their site and workers on other sites to track assets and project updates. Rugged smartphone walkie-talkie solutions ensure that workers can communicate at the push of a button, even with gloves on. On-site employees can also access video communications and share documents.

Just because a construction site is remote doesn't mean it needs to be plagued by communications hiccups, project delays and cost overruns. A temporary network provides comprehensive and effective construction site solutions that can provide connectivity until a permanent solution can be put in place. Most of all, it provides connectivity, which affords workers the advantages of digitization without interruptions and facilitates productivity.

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