How Utilizing the “Cloud” Connects the Field to the Office

How Utilizing the “Cloud” Connects the Field to the Office – Rich Crawford, AE Works BIM and Technology Coordinator

Technology is constantly evolving and has become engrained in our daily and personal lives.  Like any other profession, Architectural and Engineering firms are not immune to the fast- paced lifestyle technology brings.

Just a few years ago, it wouldn’t be uncommon to see an A/E professional surveying a project with a clipboard, tape measure and the ever important red pen.  As tablets made their way into the business world, the cloud continued to evolve and develop into an essential part of how we conduct our business.

By replacing clipboards boards with tablets, we use the cloud to document existing conditions, punchlists and provide field reports to staff, clients and consultants.  While a team is onsite, other members of our team can be in the office inputting collected data into a model or generating reports for the project.  This also allows team members to have access to the same data at any given time.  No matter if you have been on a project from the beginning or just coming on board, it’s easy to quickly see and access all legacy project information.

No more are the days of traveling to a job site down the road or in another state, and bringing back markups and developing or downloading pictures from a camera.   Bridging the gap between existing facilities documentation and real conditions, these multi-tasking tools push the future design documentation. The portability of these tools provides new levels of enhancement to the design process.  With cloud-based tools, the opportunity arises to transform the sometime cumbersome initial field investigation and construction administration  phases into a streamlined process that results in dynamic drawing changes, creating a direct link between the field and office.
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