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Last updateFri, 20 Oct 2017 3pm

Technology

NHBC announces partnership with BSRIA for effective air leakage testing

Housebuilders are now able to benefit from a more efficient, faster onsite air leakage testing service following the announcement of a new partnership between NHBC and leading consultancy and research organisation BSRIA (Building Services Research and Information Association).

From June, NHBC and BSRIA – an organisation with over 50 years’ experience supporting and advising the construction industry, which has carried out 50,000 energy tests across the industry since 2006 - will jointly provide responsive air leakage testing as part of NHBC’s  overall Part L compliance package which includes SAP and EPC’s.

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More than Tracking Fleets

In today’s always-connected world, contractors can use technologies to gather data about fleets. In addition to simply using the tech to give drivers assignments and improve dispatching, systems can also integrate with backoffice applications for project management, billing, and HR (human resources), among others, to improve processes across the entire company.

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Managing Project Integration Efforts

What does it truly mean to be integrated? For some it means linking together the critical technology systems within the company. For others, that means extending out to external partners. For others still that means trying to get a better handle on all the data associated with a construction project.

Each task around integration seems difficult. However, some technology providers are giving their best effort and providing solutions that tackle all three levels effectively.

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Integration and Standards in Construction

Many construction companies use disparate technology for different pieces of the business. Flowing data from one system to the next can improve processes significantly, reducing the amount of manual input required in the office. As such, more technology providers are coming together to integrate systems.

This week, Viewpoint Construction Software, www.viewpointcs.com, Portland, Ore, and JB Knowledge Technologies, www.jbknowledge.com, Bryan, Texas, which provides the SmartBidNet platform, have announced a new partnership.

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New Tech for Specialty Contractors

For the specialty and subcontracting segment of the construction market, one challenge in the past has been meeting strict deadlines on tight budgets. With IT systems in place, subs and specialty contractors can more effectively meet the needs of the owners and general contractors.

These days, specialty contractors and subs have many new options to offer valued-added services to customers. At the AHR Expo, taking place January 28-30 in Dallas, Texas, a slew of technology announcements are targeted specifically at service and specialty contractors.

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Pushing the Market for 3D Home Designs

Designing and planning in 3D can create great efficiencies for a home project. Builders and buyers alike are reaping the rewards, and now we see both groups playing an active role in promote the value of 3D for constructing new homes.

For example, The Design Group at New Energy Works Timberframers,, recently integrated Autodesk Revit, www.autodesk.com, San Rafael, Calif., for its designs. According to the company, this change is paramount in that it brings the latest in three-dimensional design technology to the process of timber frame craftsmanship.

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Integrated Programs, Assets

Education and government organizations continue to refine critical businesses processes through the use of technology. While the move to use technology in these organizations is nothing new, the rate at which they make changes is beginning to accelerate. Is this an indication of more adoption to come in the year ahead?

One example is The New York State University Construction Fund (Fund), www.sucn.suny.edu, Albany, N.Y., announcing the use of e-Builder Enterprise from e-Builder, www.e-builder.net, Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., as its new system for scheduling, budget management, and fiscal forecasting at both the project and program levels.

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The Device Dilemma for Construction

Some construction companies might be going the way of BYOD (bring your own device), allowing workers to bring personal devices for business purposes on the jobsite. Still, other businesses are holding off, and continue to standardize on corporate tablets and smartphones for work at the jobsite. With the plethora of devices hitting the construction market as of late, how can contractors decide which is best for work in the field?

Apple’s initial release of the iPhone and iPad clearly redefined how the construction industry does business at the jobsite. With a wide world of apps and a very portable device, many construction companies began using these in the field. But now, Apple’s products aren’t the only go-to devices.

Read more: The Device Dilemma for Construction

Prequalification Tech Mitigates the Risk

Risk management comes in multiple forms. For construction, risk exists at every step of the process; before, during, and even after a project is complete. Technology continues to take hold at all such stages, helping contractors and owners become better at risk management on a day-to-day basis.

For example, iSqFt, www.isqft.com, Cincinnati, Ohio, came to market late last year with a solution to help contractors and subcontractors seeking to be prequalified for new work, as well as manage information of prequalified companies. The company worked in conjunction with ConsensusDocs to offer online access to industry-standard documents associated with best practices for prequalifying contractors and subcontractors through use of the ConsensusDocs 721 Subcontractor Prequalification Statement.

Read more: Prequalification Tech Mitigates the Risk