Managing increasing amounts of project information is something that businesses in the AEC industry are always looking to make easier. Having a handle on your project information, from emails and drawings to contracts and other documentation, can make all the difference to successful and profitable project delivery.
Disparate systems, information silos, disorganised yellow folder structures and different ways of working with teams and individuals can all be damaging to the success of your projects. Without formal Project Information Management (PIM) processes and systems in place, the efficiency of and collaboration within project teams can be compromised.
So how is PIM changing the way businesses in the AEC industry manage their information?
Challenging the norm of using yellow folders to manage documentation
The majority of organisations in the AEC industry believe that using yellow folders to file and store project and business documentation is the best option. Yellow folder structures may be easy to create and change but they offer no fixed business wide structure or options to control the viewing, editing and distribution of documentation. This means that critical business and project information can easily slip through the cracks.
When it comes to using yellow folders, no matter how hard businesses work to enforce particular folder structures, filing rules and naming conventions, it never seems to fully stick. More formal PIM strategies are needed.
Educating people to treat email communications as valuable information
As we discuss in ‘Project Information Management for Dummies', one of the biggest mistakes that project-centric businesses are making is not seeing email communication as information. By treating emails and their attachments as part of a conversation rather than as business and project critical information, organisations are exposing themselves to unnecessary risk as a result of lost or inaccurate information.
By implementing a PIM strategy and system, businesses can efficiently store, catalogue and retrieve essential email communications.
Connecting office-based and on-site teams
If you are still gathering and managing on-site information using forms and a clipboard, you are missing a trick. The mobile technology available today, and more specifically as part of the Deltek PIM solution, means that you have the ability to gather, store and share on-site information quickly and easily.
The use of mobile technology has led to greater efficiency for both office based and site based employees and contractors. It has also offered a seamless integration between construction project teams.
Offering an accurate 360 degree of a business’s projects and profitability
In order to have a full and accurate picture of the progress and performance of your projects, and your business as a whole, you need to have access to the right information. If there are gaps due to lost documentation and information silos; compounded by a lack of PIM strategy and systems, there will be gaps in your knowledge. This, in turn, means that the decisions you make around your business and projects may not be the right decisions and who knows where that could lead.
For more information on how implementing a PIM strategy and system will benefit your business, download our PIM for Dummies eBook.