How Preliminary Notices Help Build Better Relationships with the General Contractor?
How Preliminary Notices Help Build Better Relationships with the General Contractor?
If you’re working in a construction firm, you are probably used to the long wait to receive your payment after completing your work. You wait patiently to get paid by the general contractor. You try contacting him via phone calls, emails and texts to remind him about the invoice. But none of it seems to get their response or attention. In fact, they get annoyed when you keep asking.
    That is when you ask yourself if there is anything you could’ve done to establish a better relationship early on in the project? Well, there is definitely something you could have done. Sending a preliminary notice is a great way to improve communication with the general contractor and build a good relationship with him from the beginning.
      One major misconception about preliminary notices is that they do not strengthen relationships between the parties but rather worsen it. However, that is not true at all. vigilant subcontractors always send preliminary notices regardless of whether there is a payment issue or not. Sending preliminary notices is not only about guarding your lien rights. There are several other benefits to the practice as well. Building a good relationship with the general contractor is important for every subcontractor. It not only helps you get your payment faster, but also improves your prospects for business in future.
        Here are three ways preliminary notices can help you strengthen your relationship with your general contractor:
          • Preliminary Notices Help in Forming a Professional First Impression
              General contractors prefer working with professionals who know what they are doing. One of their main concerns is making sure that all parties get paid without any complications. Working with professional subcontractors means that the work as well as the payments will most likely go smoothly. This is one of the main reasons why general contractors like to receive preliminary notices from subcontractors.
            • Preliminary Notices Minimize Risk for General Contractors
                All the parties at the top of the payment chain i.e. the general contractor, owner, and lender want to ensure that the payments move smoothly. None of them wants to get a mechanics lien filed. A lot of paperwork is required for liens which slows down the project can cause the concerned parties to lose the property entirely. Liens can also increase the chances of double payments to the sub-subcontractors, in case the payments from the general contractor don’t properly flow down through their subs.
                  When the property owner, lender, or general contractor receives a preliminary notice, they get more information about a sub who is doing the work, the work that is being done, and also who hired the sub. This helps them in ensuring that payments are made to the right party for the right work. In this way, they can effectively avoid the risk of double payment and a mechanics lien.
                  • Preliminary Notices Help Improve Communication
                      Most of the disputes that general contractors deal with arise due to poor communication. So to avoid any confusion, it is vitally important for you to establish a strong communication line at the very beginning of the project.
                        Keeping in mind the complexity of construction projects, not all parties in accounts payable are aware of the contractor on the payroll. Preliminary notices make you more visible and helps you stand out among that pile of paperwork. This transparency makes it easier for you to communicate with all the people involved, ensuring that the project runs smoothly.
                          Preliminary notices help you build a strong communication channel by informing all the concerned parties up the chain about who you are, what work you are responsible for, and how much it is going to cost. Moreover, these notices will also provide you with the opportunity to get feedback early on in the project, which will help you avoid any roadblocks in future.
                          How to Build a Strong General Contractor-Client Relationship?
                          How to Build a Strong General Contractor-Client Relationship?
                          As a general contractor, it is extremely important for you to build a strong relationship with your clients. Good customer relationships can lead to referrals, repeat business, and also word of mouth marketing. A contractor-client relationship built on understanding and trust can go a long way when problems arise on a project. This relationship should mutually benefit both the client and the contractor, regardless of whether it is for one project or several projects. It is a simple formula: the client gets a project completed within budget and on time built according to his satisfaction, and the general contractor receives his payment on time and makes a profit.
                            But how would a general contractor build that relationship? What is necessary to take it from just providing services once to something better? Here we’ll be discussing all that needs to be done in order to build a strong general contractor-client relationship. So let’s begin:
                                • Communication
                                    Establishing communication with your clients is the first and most important step to building a good relationship. The first thing you have to do is form a single point of contact who’ll be responsible for all communications with your client. This is going to simplify the flow of information. Also, this will eliminate confusion as to who the customer should contact.
                                      You also have to determine the method of communication you will be using and how often you’ll communicate information to your client as the project progresses. This can be daily or weekly updates, or sometimes less frequently on large projects, like when major targets are achieved. It is basically all about keeping your client informed about everything without bombarding them with continuous updates.
                                        Every client is different, so it is very important to discuss when and how they will be communicated with. Text and email are two of the most popular communication methods because they create a digital paper trail that you can refer to in the event of any dispute or issue. In-person meetings and phone calls are also good, especially when discussing more complicated issues. Also, be sure to follow up with an email summarizing what was discussed in the meeting.
                                        • Contract
                                            Regardless of whether it is a new client or one you have worked with several times, having a concise and clear contract in place is extremely important for building and maintaining a strong contractor-client relationship.
                                              It may seem a bit strange to think about a contract as a key to building a relationship. But let’s think about that for a second, a clear contract establishes roles and responsibilities of all the concerned parties, which eliminates a lot of confusion and helps to avoid disputes.
                                                A good contract is easily understandable and written in simple English. The contract should outline roles and responsibilities of the general contractor as well as the client. Clauses for payments, claims, scope of work, change orders, etc. should be clearly mentioned in the contract. Both parties should carefully review this legal document together and any ambiguous language or grey areas should be corrected before signing the contract.
                                                • Collaboration
                                                    If you are really looking to build and maintain a strong relationship with your clients, you would want to work with them, not for then. There are certain project delivery and contracting methods such as design-build and integrated project delivery that rely on a collaborative approach.
                                                      Determine what aspects of the project are important to the client. It can be quality, budget, sustainability, project timetable, etc. Make sure that you ask open-ended questions from the client so that you truly understand what he needs in his building. Also, don’t be shy to offer any advice and alternatives to your client. Your duties also include helping the client with your knowledge and expertise.
                                                    Top Green Technologies used in Construction Industry
                                                    Top Green Technologies used in Construction Industry
                                                    Green technology has played a major role in making sustainable and energy-efficient construction possible. It has a lower carbon footprint and does not have any adverse effect on the environment. Green technology is playing a major role in new construction projects and is being used in every stage of development. Every aspect of the building, including construction materials, design, and operating systems are chosen to be as energy-efficient and sustainable as possible.
                                                      The top green technologies used today in construction projects are:
                                                        • Solar Power
                                                            In green construction, there are two types of solar power: active and passive. Active solar power involves using l solar systems that absorb the radiation from the sun to cater for electricity and heat provisions. It reduces the need for gas and electricity, and helps save a substantial amount of energy.
                                                              Passive solar power, on the other hand, uses sun rays to heat up homes through heat-absorbing surfaces and strategic positioning of windows. The windows allow the energy to enter and the heat absorbed by surfaces reduces the for warming houses during the winter season.
                                                              • Biodegradable Materials
                                                                  Using biodegradable materials in construction is an ecological way of making buildings sustainable. Most of the traditional construction methods result in accumulation of toxic chemicals and waste products, the majority of take several years to degrade. Biodegradable materials like organic paints aid to reduce the adverse effects on the environment. These materials easily breakdown and do not release any pollutants. The use of these materials in building walls, foundations, and insulators play a major part in sustainable construction projects.
                                                                  • Smart Appliances
                                                                      Sustainable construction emphasizes the installation of self-sufficient and energy saving appliances. Smart refrigerators, washing machines, and dishwashers are some common examples of energy-efficient and sustainable technologies. This technology is a step forward towards building zero-energy houses and commercial buildings.
                                                                      • Cool Roofs
                                                                          Cool roofs aim at reflecting sunlight and heat away and are one of the top sustainable green technologies being used these days. It helps in keeping buildings and homes at standard room temperatures by reducing thermal emittance and heat absorption. Cool roofs have the ability to lower temperatures by more than 50°C during summer.
                                                                          • Green Insulation
                                                                              Insulation is a major concern when it comes to construction of homes and buildings. Green insulation has proven to be a highly advantageous sustainable construction technology as it reduces the need for expensive finishes that are made from non-renewable materials. This technology uses old and used materials such as newspapers and denim. Thus, it is not only energy-efficient but also cost-efficient.
                                                                              • Low-energy Building Designs
                                                                                  Green construction technologies usually include mechanisms to lower energy usage. The construction of houses and buildings with wood, for example, is a sustainable construction technology as it has less embodied energy compared to buildings made of concrete or steel. Sustainable construction also makes use of insulation techniques and high-performance windows that allow for free flow of air and reduce air leakage. This helps reduce energy requirements of houses and buildings and makes them more sustainable.
                                                                                  • Electrochromic Smart Glass
                                                                                      This is a relatively new technology that is particularly beneficial in the summer season and blocks out the harsh radiation of the sun. It uses electric signals to charge the windows to adjust the amount of solar radiation the glass reflects. It is integrated into the control system of buildings and allows users to change the amount of solar radiation to shut out. With this technology, commercial as well as residential buildings can save substantially on air conditioning, heating, and ventilating costs.
                                                                                      • Water-efficient Technologies
                                                                                          There are various water-efficient technologies that are being used for sustainable construction. Basically, these technologies involve reuse and application of water supply systems that are energy efficient. Examples include dual plumbing, water conservation fixtures, rainwater harvesting and reuse of greywater.
                                                                                        Automation in Construction and its Advantages
                                                                                        Automation in Construction and its Advantages
                                                                                        Construction automation has a wide scope and involves all the construction stages, such as the production of building materials, prefabrication of building components, on-site construction, operations and management, maintenance of building, and demolition of structures. Automation of construction counters various problems related to construction, such as shortage of skilled labour, low quality of products, poor weather conditions, safety of labour, and limited construction period which is nowadays a feature of projects.
                                                                                          If construction automation is practiced, it will allow the companies to work continuously and consequently the construction period will be decreased. In this way, automation of construction will provide the companies with great economic advantages and help them grow at a faster pace. Moreover, it will improve the safety of the labour force and enhance the quality and of the projects.
                                                                                            Advantages of Construction Automation
                                                                                            • It replaces workers in tasks that involve difficult or dangerous physical work.
                                                                                            • Automation provides more uniform and precise quality product as compared to the products produced by skilled workers.
                                                                                            • It reduces costs and enhances productivity and efficiency at the same time. Also, it is claimed that many countries like Germany and Japan have improved their gross income and living standard substantially by employing automation in construction.
                                                                                            • Automated construction enhances work environment as it saves workers from uncomfortable and unsafe work positions.
                                                                                              Automation in Precast Concrete Industry
                                                                                                It has been quite long since nearly 100 percent automation is being applied in the production of construction materials like steel, cement, glass, wood, and aluminium. A great degree of automation is applied in concrete precast component production. The automation of concrete components construction is highly advantageous. It provides products with uniform quality and also declines the waste of the factory. The factory waste is reduced by using the needed amount of materials which is estimated with the help of computer programming and planning.
                                                                                                  There are numerous apparatuses that are being used by construction companies for various purposes on the work site, such as concrete screeding, scrubbing, finishing, and cleaning.
                                                                                                    Automation in On-site Masonry and Prefabricated Masonry Construction
                                                                                                      Automation plays a significant role in masonry prefabrication and offers several advantages to the construction companies. It’s because automation not only substantially increases the fabrication of masonry blocks but it also reduces manpower requirements and labour costs. Plants that produce masonry elements can be completely or partly automated. By doing so, the companies can make prefabrication of masonry blocks easier and less costly. In addition to this, automation is also applied for laying bricks on the construction site. It has the ability to lay up to thousand bricks per hour and help companies save a lot of time and labour.
                                                                                                        Automation in Timber Construction
                                                                                                          Automation in wood prefabrication is gaining popularity these days and have advanced to some extent in few parts of the world. Wood prefabrication has shifted from manual processing to automated processing using computerized machines. There are several automated timber producing plants that build prefabricated components for houses in a very short period of time and involve minimal hand work in the process.
                                                                                                            Automation in Production of Steel Components
                                                                                                              It’s been quite long since steel companies have begun applying automation in prefabrication of building components according to the demand of contractors. The steel components are manufactured off-site and then transferred to the construction site for erection. Automation, however, is not used in the erection process and manual welding and screwing is carried out for that purpose.
                                                                                                                Although utilization of steel components in residential construction is very low but there are factories that prefabricate steel components for houses using robotics and automation. It is reported that these factories produce components for 5000-10,000 houses per year and have the ability to manufacture 120m2 in just 2 mins 30 secs.
                                                                                                                4 Tips for Keeping your Construction Project on Track
                                                                                                                4 Tips for Keeping your Construction Project on Track
                                                                                                                One major reason behind out-of-control project costs is the inability to complete it on time. If you want your project to stay within budget, you have to make sure you it stays on schedule. However, as there are so many moving parts and unavoidable surprises along the way, it’s very difficult to ensure that the project is on track. But it isn’t impossible. There are some tricks that project managers can use to avoid unnecessary delays. We have covered them below. Whether you are a construction contractor working on an important project, a real estate investor, or a major developer, we have found 4 tips that will help you understand how the best professionals in this business keep their projects on track and also maximize profits while doing so.
                                                                                                                • Minimize construction blockers and delays There are two main problems that may prevent a project from completing on time: blockers and delays. Expert contractors know how to detect and address each of these problems. A delay in construction occurs when things don’t go according to the plan. And as construction is mostly sequential, the delay is often unavoidable.  For example, according to the plan concrete was supposed to be poured within three days, but it ends up raining. So now the project will have to be pushed back three days and contractor will have to reschedule the tasks. Delays can also occur when subcontractors don’t show up on time or when material deliveries are delayed.
                                                                                                                • Blockers, on the other hand, are tasks that must be completed before other tasks can be begun. For example, according to the schedule bricks had to be laid for your building on a certain date, but you can’t start that work until the foundation has been poured. Therefore, careful planning is very important if you want to avoid delays. And the blockers must be identified well in advance to prevent them from being an obstacle in the project’s progress.
                                                                                                                • Have a detailed project plan 
                                                                                                                • When it comes to keeping a project on track, nothing is more important than having a comprehensive project plan to follow. A good project plan that can be updated easily as the project progresses gives a bird’s eye view of the project, and allows the managers to timely identify the potential problems and solve them before they turn into costly delays. Many contractors start working on projects of different sizes without having a clear timeline and finalized drawings, or before communicating with the critical subcontractors. This is a big mistake. Your plan should be all-inclusive. It should include every single detail required to finish the project.
                                                                                                                • Establish clear roles & responsibilities
                                                                                                                • Commercial construction projects involve many contractors, subcontractors, workers, managers, and other personnel. If you fail to delineate the exact responsibilities of each party, it may result in critical tasks of the projects being ignored which in turn would cause significant project delays. therefore, you must assign roles and responsibilities clearly to each party involved. Establishing accountability is an important part of an effective project plan. Also, make sure to focus not only on what task needs to be completed, but also on who will be responsible for doing it and by when.
                                                                                                                • Establish a clear communication channel between parties
                                                                                                                • Sometimes minor issues can turn into major delays because of lack of communication between parties. When an unexpected problem occurs on the worksite, it is important that the project managers have a direct line to their team and that all the concerned parties are easily accessible for consultation. You must timely detect, assess, and communicate the issue to all the stakeholders and get everyone on board to find a solution as early as possible.
                                                                                                                How to Select the Right Contractor for Your Project?
                                                                                                                How to Select the Right Contractor for Your Project?
                                                                                                                Even simple construction project can turn into a frustrating experience if you end up with the wrong contractors. Therefore, choosing the right building contractor for your project is critical for the success of your project. It is important that you hire a top construction contractor with years of experience and an impeccable reputation. The truth is, you will find more than enough construction contractors in your area to pick from. Most of them will probably be able to the job, but you don’t want to take any risk of making a wrong decision.
                                                                                                                  Choosing the right construction contractor means that the finished building will be all you want it to be. It also means that the construction process will go smoothly without any delays and defects. It is just not worth it to hire a construction contractor who will fail to keep his work up to your standards or who will not be able to deliver what you want without any hassle. You’d want someone with whom you can easily work and communicate.
                                                                                                                    Here are a few things you should consider when deciding which contractor to hire for your building project:
                                                                                                                      • A good working relationship
                                                                                                                          The contractor you hire should be someone who has a good track record of reliability and integrity, and who’s able to maintain a solid, close relationship with his clients from the beginning till the end of the project. You should be able to trust him completely with your project without any worries or doubts.
                                                                                                                          • Referrals & References
                                                                                                                              Many contractors provide references from their past clients with who they have worked. It’s very important to directly contact those references to get more information about the firm and people you’re considering for your project. Check if the list of repeat clients they have is long enough. Ask those references regarding the builder’s services after the project has been completed and the final payment is sent. Is that firm determined to provide quality services and earn their clients’ recommendations? Answers to all these questions will help you make the right decision.
                                                                                                                              • Experience
                                                                                                                                  Experience does not only include how long a firm has been in this business, but also the type of they usually do. For example, it wouldn’t be right to hire a contractor to construct a clinic if all their experience is in building manufacturing facilities.
                                                                                                                                  •   Financial Stability
                                                                                                                                      This is one of the most important things to add in your checklist. Make sure you check the financial references of the firm, like their bank & bonding companies. Ask the contractor for a certificate of insurance to confirm they’re properly insured. You want to be sure that you hire a contractor who will be around even long after completion of the project.
                                                                                                                                      • Payment Process
                                                                                                                                          Check what method they use for paying their vendors and subcontractors. How does the firm ensure the property owner that payments are being sent on time? And how does it protect the owner from any potential lien on his property? Ask around, because a firm that usually delays the payments of its vendors and subcontractors will have that reputation.
                                                                                                                                          • Energy Efficiency & Sustainability
                                                                                                                                              You may not really be interested in constructing a LEED-certified building, but most people want to know if their building will be energy efficient or not, given the increasing cost of energy. So make sure you ask the firm regarding their experience in sustainable construction. Also, do check if they have a LEED accredited professional in their team.
                                                                                                                                              • Schedule and Budget Compliance Check the contractor’s past record in staying within the project owner’s budget. A low upfront price will be of no benefit if you are repetitively hit with change orders, as it will take the project over your budget. Also, ask their past clients how well the contractor does when it comes to complying with schedule and getting projects completed on time.
                                                                                                                                              3 Major Changes that will hit the Construction Industry in Near Future
                                                                                                                                              3 Major Changes that will hit the Construction Industry in Near Future
                                                                                                                                              It’s a known fact that construction is very slow when it comes to adopting changes. Nevertheless, the development of new technologies has considerably contributed towards the advancement and modernization of the whole construction industry. A general need for new technology has emerged in the industry as result of serious productivity problems that have been in noticed in big markets all over the world.
                                                                                                                                                Construction industry has already begun adopting some of the changes today and further readjustment of the entire sector is expected in the near future. We have listed down five most significant changes that are about to hit the construction industry in near future. Read on to know more:
                                                                                                                                                  • Construction Software
                                                                                                                                                      This is one of the most major developments that will soon revolutionize the construction processes. Many companies have already incorporated construction software in their processes while the others are preparing to do so. To be more specific, this software has managed to empower the entire construction process by improving the communication between different teams and stakeholders involved in a project. One of the key elements that have made this software so essential now is the fact that it allows the project agents to exchange information in real-time. This results in a considerable decrease of task delays and budget miscalculations.
                                                                                                                                                      • Virtual and Augmented Reality
                                                                                                                                                          Virtual and augmented reality are becoming more and more popular in construction with every passing day. VR and AR have the potential to take construction processes to a whole new level. All thanks to this innovative technology, project managers can now have a thorough overview of their construction projects and plan ahead. Furthermore, with the help of this virtual projection of the building’s final form project managers can reduce task delays and prevent costly mistakes.
                                                                                                                                                          • AR and VR also offer a significant advantage in terms of security and safety. It is currently extremely dangerous and expensive to put workers below the ground or underwater to work on technical tasks. Although pipe-fitting robots and robotic underwater welders have been developed, but majority of the construction firms still prefer and use traditional methods that involve human workers. Construction industry still needs time to prepare itself for artificial intelligence. So till then, VR and AR will be there to improve worker safety. By allowing the project teams to view everything in the field and control the tools and arms to get the work done, virtual and augmented reality will make a significant contribution towards workplace safety and security.
                                                                                                                                                            • New Generation of Workforce
                                                                                                                                                                By now, it’s quite clear that the construction industry is undergoing rapid changes and that a completely revolutionized sector will emerge in the coming years. This will definitely have a strong impact on the general profile of the industry, which includes its workforce type. The introduction of new technologies in the construction industry has provided it with an exclusive opportunity to attract educated and skillful young professionals. With extensive use of advanced methods and software, construction is transforming itself into a promising career field. Moreover, considering the current serious labor shortage in the construction industry, this will bring a great change. As the sector will gradually embrace technological changes, it will finally be able to offer long-term career prospects to the new technological savvy young professionals.
                                                                                                                                                                  To get a better understanding of this, think about those construction firms that still use pen and paper in their construction planning and processes. There is a new generation of professionals out there that is more comfortable with the technologies emerging rapidly. When this generation get into workforce of top construction firms, there will be an accelerated shift towards hi-tech, revolutionary solutions.
                                                                                                                                                                BEST COMMUNICATION PRACTICES DURING CONSTRUCTION EMERGENCIES
                                                                                                                                                                BEST COMMUNICATION PRACTICES DURING CONSTRUCTION EMERGENCIES
                                                                                                                                                                As construction is generally a high-risk work, emergencies are bound to arise. Workers can find themselves in dangerous situations with no instant means of communicating with other team members. This can lead to disastrous consequences. In large worksites or warehouses, this can be especially hazardous as some workers might get into an emergency situation without any nearby point-of-contact. That is why it’s essential for the construction managers to implement an effective and efficient safety communication protocol. By ensuring that an effective communication protocol is there during emergencies, the managers can make sure that all workers stay informed and ready when any crisis strikes, be it a natural disaster, an injury, or any other unforeseen event.
                                                                                                                                                                  Here are some of the best communication practices companies should use in construction emergencies:
                                                                                                                                                                    • Equipping the Workers with Radios
                                                                                                                                                                        Most project managers provide their workers with some type of portable mobile device. Usually, this portable device is a cell phone. While cell phones are quite effective for normal communication, they may not be able to deliver immediacy required in emergencies. Whether a worker is caught in a hazardous situation or trying to warn other team members of an impending danger, using voicemail and dial tones can cost him valuable minutes. The project manager should therefore equip their workers with two-way radios. These radios are the most efficient way to communicate in emergency situations as they provide a direct line to other team members who need to be informed of the matter at hand.
                                                                                                                                                                          Two-way radios also come with several other valuable emergency features, such as Man Down feature which allows the radios to detect if there is a lack of movement of if a radio is in horizontal position. This basically suggests that a worker has collapsed. It generates a chirp sound which notifies nearby radios that something has gone wrong.  Moreover, these radios have an emergency alert button which allows the workers to send out a network-wide alert in emergency situations with a simple push of a button.  This feature is especially useful in situations where dangers like fire, an incoming natural disaster, or suspicious figures on the worksite may be present.
                                                                                                                                                                          • Implementing a PA System
                                                                                                                                                                              If the worksite is more contained, then a PA system may be a more efficient route for communicating emergencies. This system allows the managers and operators to send a mass-announcement to employees on the worksite of an impending danger. There are many PA systems that have a reach of up to two miles, making them operational for even outdoor worksites. However, it is very important to limit the access of PA system to relevant departments, such as HR or management, in order to avoid false alarms.
                                                                                                                                                                              • Encouraging “Buddy System” Among Workers
                                                                                                                                                                                  The project managers should promote buddy system among their employees to improve worksite safety. Buddy System is very crucial when it comes to communicating in emergency situations. On hazardous construction sites, workers who have to perform risky tasks should be encouraged to do them with a partner. Having a co-worker along is essential in situations where one worker gets caught in an emergency, as that other member can return to the management to seek help.
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Equipping Workers with Wearable GPS Devices
                                                                                                                                                                                      These devices can easily be clipped on hip or wrist. Being unobtrusive, wearable GPS devices allow workers to easily continue their work without any interference, and they also help managers in keeping track of their workers’ whereabouts. They are helpful on larger construction sites, especially in a situation where an alert has been received from worker’s radio. It allows project managers and the team to easily locate the worker in danger, and thus reduces the risk of more destructive consequences.
                                                                                                                                                                                    What is Blockchain Technology and What Problems Can it Solve for The Construction Industry?
                                                                                                                                                                                    What is Blockchain Technology and What Problems Can it Solve for The Construction Industry?

                                                                                                                                                                                    What is Blockchain?

                                                                                                                                                                                      Blockchain technology is becoming increasingly popular and being used in several industries including agriculture and banking sectors. It is basically a digital ledger that allows reliable integration and use of the data related to processes or transactions. Blockchain database stores all the important data and other information and secures it by cryptographic technology.
                                                                                                                                                                                        Moreover, it lets the approved stakeholders access the stored information in the ledger with complete transparency and trust, via a secure and verified chain or records. The stakeholders can easily access and add to the quality assurance processes, multiple layers of design review, payment records, and project management transactions. Blockchain technology can help the company save a lot of time and resources by eliminating the need for intermediate steps and intermediary parties in a process

                                                                                                                                                                                          What Problems Can Blockchain solve for Construction Industry?

                                                                                                                                                                                          • Payment Processing
                                                                                                                                                                                              One of the major challenges in construction is to make sure that payments have been timely sent to the stakeholders. Several regulatory requirements and frameworks such as defect bonds, security of the payment structure, project bank accounts, and retention trust are required to ensure that secure payments are made to subcontractors and workers. Blockchain technology has the ability to improve integrity and transparency of the payment processes by allowing traceable and secure payments.
                                                                                                                                                                                            • Workplace Safety Management Systems
                                                                                                                                                                                                Another challenge that construction industry is facing is the safety of its workers on construction sites. Every other day unpleasant incidents are reported on sites most of which involve workers. It has become extremely important for the industry to improve its workplace safety management systems. Currently, site events like failure of materials, safety incidents, weather conditions, and site conditions are logged manually via IoT tools and sensors. Blockchain technology can serve as a more secure source of Workplace Health and Safety (WHS), and other site information, with a high degree of accountability.
                                                                                                                                                                                              • Supply Chain Management
                                                                                                                                                                                                  One of the many advantages of Blockchain technology is that it can be applied to every stage of supply chain management, including design, and material procurement, assimilation, and construction. Blockchain identifies the origin of construction materials, their suitability with the required specifications and quality standards, and secures the packing/delivery notes form the manufacturers. It also helps the firms in tracking the materials from shipping, customs, to the delivery site.
                                                                                                                                                                                                    No other technology or method offers this level of accountability for supply chain management. By incorporating Blockchain technology, firms can encourage trust and right behavior among their workers and stakeholders, and improve the efficiency of supply chain ecosystem.
                                                                                                                                                                                                  • Smart Contracts
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Blockchain technology lets the firms create self-executing digital contracts known as “smart contracts” that automatically transfer money or an asset once it is verified by the underlying code that the predefined conditions have been fulfilled. Smart contracts can be used to track intellectual property rights, systemize payments, and transfer ownership of equipment and materials. This technology also reduces the need for intermediary parties and saves a lot of resources and time.
                                                                                                                                                                                                    • Building Information Modelling (BIM)
                                                                                                                                                                                                        The combination of Building Information Modelling (BIM) and Blockchain is a highly beneficial one. It enables the collection of high volumes of data from different design packages and presents it to the stakeholders in a dashboard format. In this way the information is securely shared between team members and stakeholders. This combination also allows the project managers to monitor and update the progress of the projects, and register and compare the work hours of both the workers and machines. BIM helps firms identify IP ownership, any problems in approved design and the quality of construction, and proposed improvisations or modifications and their impact on construction, and in this way improves the efficiency of design review and approval processes.
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Is the construction Industry Ready for the Blockchain Technology?
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Is the construction Industry Ready for the Blockchain Technology?
                                                                                                                                                                                                      The construction industry is often criticized for its resistance to change. A lot of research that has been carried out on this subject indicates that a bad mix of practical and cultural barriers is present in the industry that hinders change and discourages adoption of new technologies. Considering these facts, it’s quite possible that the potential impact of Blockchain on construction will be undermined. A major obstacle that holds back change is the sheer number of regulations that the governments has imposed on the industry. Similarly, there are several other issues that serve as a barrier between construction and change. Due to these reasons, the introduction of Blockchain technology in construction may not be as beneficial as we think.
                                                                                                                                                                                                        Here are a few major issues that the construction industry will have to overcome in order to reap the benefits of Blockchain technology:
                                                                                                                                                                                                          • Infrastructure and Administration Gap The infrastructure and administration systems of construction are not fully prepared to adopt the Blockchain technology. They are still not capable enough for implementing crypto-technology in a way that its full potential is utilized. Remember that we are discussing the least digitized industry here; the industry where about 95 percent of the data produced is thrown away.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              The companies still find it more convenient to continue with their traditional methods without realizing the long term benefits of the new technology. Lack of investment in technological innovations, structural fragmentation, and limited collaboration are few issues in the construction industry that are underestimated. If not addressed timely, these issues may pose a serious threat to the future of construction.
                                                                                                                                                                                                              • Lack of Digitization The current practices of the industry have made it quite evident that before we introduce Blockchain technology, we will have to build a suitable setting to accommodate it. For example, we really need to reconstruct the building processes and bring them closer to the needs of supply chain. If that happens, only then we will be able to introduce smart contracts as supportive measure, otherwise it will only be a waste of resources.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Similarly, in order to use Bitcoin or any other established cryptocurrency it is important to create a smart contract. To make this happen, the companies would need data derived by a real-time project management software, a checklist application for inspection, and a drone for monitoring and certifying that the building is being constructed as its 3D design. With all these problems being present, it is evident that for an all-inclusive implementation of Blockchain technology in the construction industry, we first need to heavily invest in technological innovations. When the industry will become sufficiently digitized, only then Blockchain will be beneficial for it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    We should remember that all industries are different from one another. The fact that Blockchain technology has been successfully implemented in other industries such as E-Sports and accounting does not necessarily mean that it will be the same for construction industry. This statement can become stronger if we take some of the advantages like data-driven decision making and real-time project updates etc. that Blockchain technology is providing into consideration. It is because these advantages can be acquired through other construction software as well. In that sense, Blockchain isn’t really necessary for construction industry.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Blockchain technology is undoubtedly an incredible technology regardless of the industries in which it is implemented. When it comes to construction, there is no doubt that this technology could help the industry improve its processes through bitcoin and smart contracts. However, it’s important to consider whether the construction companies are ready to adopt crypto-technology and whether it is really that necessary for the industry.