7 life hacks for advanced work in building construction

How to coordinate, document and communicate as site manager

Anyone who works in construction needs to be able to handle new challenges every hour. Materials, personnel, weather, traffic – the list of variables that can influence the progress of a project goes on and on. Using the CONTAKT solution as an example, we have put together 7 life hacks that can really help.

CONTAKT - sensor

First of all: What is CONTAKT and what value does it offer?

CONTAKT uses in-house developed sensor technology, which transmits real-time data from jobsites, enabling workflow analysis and the optimisation of construction processes. The app enables the scheduling and planning of construction progress, materials and personnel required, reporting of actual performance, the execution of variance analysis, and improvements are made evident. Construction firms benefit from more transparency and can improve their workflows and competitiveness based on field data.

Life Hack #1

BIM2FIELD - Take advantage of 3D

Many companies are currently putting a lot of work into the areas of BIM and digital twin technology. Far too often, however, the 3D model takes a back seat after the sequencing, and the construction site barely benefits from any of the preparatory work. But 3D planning also has enormous advantages in terms for the execution stage. Cubature calculation of components alone can save important time on site.

In the CONTAKT solution, the amount of concrete and quality per work cycle can be called up with a single click of the mouse. A concrete order list is created automatically for the desired period. The concrete supplier is notified, enabling them to plan capacities and deliver on time.


Life Hack #2

CYCLE PLANNING - Maintaining a good team workflow

When we plan cycles, we usually end up more productive than before. Traditionally, this is done on a 2D plan with light pens. A colour is assigned to each day, the cycle is pinned to the board, so everyone knows what to do and when. In this way, construction managers have brought structure to their construction sites around the world.

Digitalisation is now helping to take this process to the next level.

With cycle planning based on the building model, as provided in the CONTAKT solution, every rough milestone plan can be easily converted into ready-to-implement work packages. All progress is recorded in the cycle and therefore in the building model. This allows you to create a consistent workload for your team and reduce expensive waiting times.

Life Hack #3

SENSORS - Hello automation

When 20 things are happening all at the same time, it is impossible to keep track of everything. After all, we cannot be in four places at once, even if some of us sometimes would like that. In order to provide greater clarity and to improve documentation, more and more often sensors are being used in the construction industry. For infrastructure construction drones perform laser scans, for operations management acoustic sensors provide feedback on the functioning of air conditioning systems, and for in-situ concrete building construction acceleration sensors are in use on the formwork. This CONTAKT feature opens up a completely new approach to construction progress measurement. For example, crane lifts can be measured per composite and the position of the formwork can be determined. Use sensors on your construction site and allow data to support your work.

Life Hack #4

CONCRETE MONITORING - Finding just the right moment

This topic has been around for a while – but it has not yet found its way onto every construction site. If you don’t use it yet, today is the day you should change that. Concrete monitoring is commonly understood to mean measuring the temperature of the concrete structure. Based on a concrete calibration curve, it is possible to calculate the early concrete strength. This may sound very complicated but is basically very simple. You attach a cable sensor to the formwork and track the measurement in the associated web application. For all experts: This is where Concremote comes into play. The software shows you when the concrete is expected to reach its target value. When the time comes, you will also receive a notification on your smartphone. Hundreds of construction projects have already progressed faster because it was possible to strip the formwork earlier than originally planned. In cold weather conditions, in particular, it makes sense to use this measuring technology, rather than leaving your progress to conservative time estimates.

Life Hack #5

IMAGE DOCUMENTATION - Worth a thousand words

Acceptance, error messages, RFIs and many other process steps on a construction site need to be properly documented. Anyone who relies solely on disciplined data storage and clear file naming practices from their employees, will probably end up spending their evenings sitting in the construction container sorting images.

Mobile apps such as the CONTAKT solution can help. Images of the construction site are automatically matched with the corresponding cycle in the building model. This ensures that every step is clearly organised, and you no longer have to sacrifice your evenings.

Image documentation

Life Hack #6

TIME STAMPS - Create empirical values

How many working hours were spent on this construction site? That is easy to answer, right? How many working hours were dedicated to sections with complex recesses? That one is a little harder to answer, isn’t it? On many sites, the estimator’s own experience is the most precise measure for assessing expenses prior to a project. That needs to change. Anyone using time stamps for single cycles will benefit from a much broader understanding of the capabilities of their own team after just a few projects. The CONTAKT solution’s mobile app makes this very easy – as rough or as precise as you want.

Life Hack #7

PERFORMANCE MONITORING - Maintaining an overview

What percentage of the shell construction is currently completed? What is the current status in terms of PLANNED versus ACTUAL progress? Which team is doing an outstanding job and where are things possibly not yet optimal? Performance monitoring deals with this and many other parameters. Construction sites are starting to monitor performance in a way that has been standard in competitive sports for many years. You can use CONTAKT-HUB to see all the performance values at a glance.

Every day, the sensors and app feed your dashboard with priceless insights into your construction site. This means you can react extremely quickly to deviations and completing your project on schedule is easier than ever before.