A start-up based at NovaUCD, SmartBuilder Software, has launched a web-based mobile software system called SmartBuilder1, which it says is the first of its type for the construction market.
Initially aimed at the Irish and UK markets, it works on Android smartphones and tablets and is focused on saving contractors time and money and on helping them to bring in buildings with zero defects.
SmartBuilder Software was set up in 2010 by Richard Mulcahy and Peter Daly to develop mobile software systems for use on construction sites in Ireland, the UK, the US and other international markets.
They cite the findings of the Constructing Excellence Report (2009), which shows there is only a 50pc chance of any building coming in on time or on cost. In an industry where profit margins are now also under sustained pressure, SmartBuilder1 is focused on delivering a positive impact on contractors’ bottom line.
“Given that world construction output is $7.5trn annually and that there are 5bn mobile phones on the planet, the potential overlap between these sectors is huge. Smartphones and tablets will be everywhere on construction sites within a few years but they need the right software to be really useful,” said Daly. “We see a lot of evidence that the Irish, UK and international construction sector is ready to embrace this technology which can make an important contribution to productivity.”
Updating progress in real time
The new system allows managers on site to update progress in real time, to record reasons for delays, and action people from in field about issues. The system can be used to identify and tackle problems on site at the earliest opportunity and to action others to solve them faster than before.
Users can also perform quality inspections much more efficiently. Instead of taking out drawings, markers, clipboards, notebooks and digital cameras, users can tick issues off the touch screen, image the problem, mark up the drawings electronically on screen and communicate this to those who need to fix the defects. Smartbuilder1 also provides an audit trail of everything that happens on site which is then stored securely in the cloud.
Photo: The use of SmartBuilder1 on site