With the construction industry growing and growing, so is the piles of paperwork. The need for filling out forms on-site has increased over the years as the requirement for better health & safety practice, reporting and project management. To combat this, paperless solutions have been introduced to the construction industry which turn paper forms into mobile forms you can fill out digitally. While this technology looks promising, construction companies are slow to adapt and want a better understanding about the benefits of mobile data collection applications before taking the lap. So, why should your construction company go paperless?
Construction companies should go paperless because it makes data collection on-site faster and more reliable. Construction companies can improve productivity, accuracy and organization skills by going paperless, as well as save money while increasing their ROI.
Going paperless improves productivity for construction companies by simplifying the process of data collection. Mobile data collection apps, such as Locale Central, are quick and easy to use on the phone and often automatically record important data such as when and where you submitted the form, simplifying the data entry process.
On the admin side, going paperless improves productivity because it simplifies their workflow. Instead of scanning, storing, emailing, or re-entering data from paper forms as part of your daily routine, a digital form automatically stores your data securely online in a format you can typically export and re-use with other technology such as Excel or invoicing software.
Paper forms don’t give feedback as you’re filling it out, which means you can write down incorrect data and not know until someone else pulls it up. Aside from the risk of entering incorrect data, other factors like damage to the paper form or messy handwriting, which I’m particularly guilty of, has a negative impact on filling out data accurately.
Filling out data in a digital form often forces you to follow a pre-configured format which makes sure the data you record is accurate and formatted correctly. Most mobile data collection apps such as Locale Central also provide ways to automatically log the location, bearing, or time for better accuracy.
With all the paperwork in construction companies comes a responsibility to store and manage that paperwork. Not only can you lose documents in the office, but before your paperwork even reaches its final resting place you run the risk of it going missing or getting damaged on-site. By implementing a paperless solution such as Locale Central, all your documents and data are stored digitally in a central place making it easy to access and eliminating the risk of losing your data.
When looking for a paperless solution, it’s also important to check if your data can be exported. You don’t want all your paperwork locked into one place, Locale Central allows you to export your data as a CSV or PDF when you need it.
Recording and managing paper forms have a lot of hidden expenses behind them. Aside from the cost associated with the labour for recording, storing and managing paper documents, companies that also use paper forms also have to spend money on printing & storing these documents which includes the cost for the paper, ink, printers, keeping the printers maintained, storing these documents somewhere, and more.
Digital solutions often also cost a monthly subscription fee, but going paperless will still save you money when factoring not only the raw costs of paper forms, but the amount of time it saves your employees which you can redistribute to more profitable tasks.