Further InSight (Blog)

Your Equipment is Almost as Important as Your People—Improving Maintenance Management in Construction

Maintenance is one of the most important components of any construction company’s technology strategy because from a cost-management perspective, equipment is almost as important as people at the job site. Construction operations typically involve hundreds or thousands of pieces of heavy equipment, vehicles, tools and other high-value assets. Companies need to keep track of all these moving pieces—where they are, what condition they are in, and when they will require maintenance. Many organizations are still using inefficient paper forms and records to manage equipment maintenance, but leading companies are utilizing mobile technology to eliminate inefficiency and achieve complete visibility into the status of these assets.

InSight Mobile Data Regional Sales Manager Tom Saraceno discusses the challenge of making maintenance record keeping
easy for workers at busy construction sites.

Avoid Costly Unplanned Downtime

Preventive maintenance is critical to keeping vehicles and equipment working—and keeping projects on schedule. The industry depends on each piece of equipment showing up at the job site in working condition, ready to deliver 100% performance. If a piece of equipment doesn’t work as expected when it arrives at the site or fails on the job, it can derail the entire construction schedule and create extra costs to transport or rent alternative equipment. This can be a major problem for a crew on a tight timeline. For example, highway lanes can only be shut down for a limited period of time, giving crews a fixed window to complete their work.

Make Maintenance Updates Available in Real-Time

Avoiding downtime and unforeseen repairs depends on regular maintenance—and recordkeeping. Equipment managers need reliable information about the condition of assets and when they are likely to need maintenance. Critical details such as hours of operation, location, and mileage need to be available in real time—not at the end of the week when a worker has a chance to fill out a report. More importantly, when an asset requires unplanned maintenance, the right parties must be notified immediately so that replacement equipment can be deployed, any necessary parts or materials can be acquired, and repairs can be completed in a timely manner. Managing these communications through manual methods such as paper forms and phone calls can cause unnecessary delays.

How to Make Maintenance Management Easy

Recordkeeping is a challenge in any business, but it’s especially difficult in construction—where many companies still rely on outdated, inefficient paper forms. For workers fumbling with paper forms at busy job sites, it is near impossible to keep up-to-date notes about each piece of equipment – and these forms often end up damaged or flat-out lost as well. It’s easy to see why a worker would postpone recordkeeping activities, thinking: “I’m doing my job; I’ll get to the paperwork when I have a chance.” The key to consistent recordkeeping is to make it easy for workers to communicate updated info to other people and systems in real time. The explosion of mobile technology has made it easier than ever to digitize maintenance records and processes without changing the workflows that your people are accustomed to using. The StreetEagle platform from InSight Mobile Data enables companies to remotely monitor equipment utilization and performance data, with scheduled maintenance alerts and reports that help avoid costly unplanned downtime. With StreetEagle, workers at job sites use their mobile devices to submit maintenance reports that replicate the paper forms they were using previously —making the transition as seamless as possible. StreetEagle is an all-in-one platform that offers far more than maintenance management and equipment diagnostics. It also provides asset tracking, dynamic dispatch, driver behavior monitoring, route optimization, off-road mileage, and custom mobile forms. With StreetEagle, you get real-time accountability for your mobile workforce—including all vehicles, workers, equipment, and assets. Contact InSight Mobile Data to learn more about the StreetEagle platform.