Construction companies and General Contractors face unique challenges not seen in typical business environments. Not only do large construction companies have multiple office locations, but most have one or more temporary job site locations.
This special office environment presents challenges with regards to file and data sharing amongst all personnel involved, including subcontracted companies and workers. Companies not only need to make sure they have the hardware in place to handle file sharing, but they also need a software solution that meets the needs of all parties involved and one that keeps files and data secure from unauthorized access and cyber threats like ransomware, viruses, malware, and phishing.
That’s why many construction companies use a customized Electronic File Sharing Solution (EFSS). EFSS allows construction companies to reliably and securely share everything from survey plans, drafting models, photographs, videos, and more across all locations, including temporary job site locations and subcontracted parties.
This article will dive into the benefits of EFSS and take a comprehensive look at how it can solve many issues faced by general contractors and construction companies.
The Issues Faced In Construction With Traditional Sharing
One of the most prominent challenges that presents itself to construction companies and general contractors is their ability to share information and data reliably in the office and out in the field. It’s no wonder why many companies choose to share documents the old way – transporting physical copies between all locations and supplementing communication with emails and phone calls. While the old method works, it’s terribly inefficient and costly.
Physical Delivery is Expensive and Risky
Physical transportation of documents and plans poses apparent risks. Site offices can span the country, and physical delivery of documentation raises issues like printing cost, human resources, and heightened risk of loss. It’s also inefficient with regards to versioning. When design plans change or updates have to be made, companies are required to print new documents and deliver them again. Costs can skyrocket.
Email is Better, But it’s Unreliable and Messy
Email distribution is a way to share documents for companies who have embraced digital over physical. However, it’s not without its downsides. Email threads can be lengthy and messy, especially if subcontracted companies and other third-parties are using different email platforms. Email also shares the same problem as versioning. If plans are updated, how do you ensure all parties have the latest files? The solution would be to have one, centralized place where users can access the same, up-to-date documents so all parties are on the same page. Email, while efficient and reliable for written communication, isn’t purposely built or optimized for file sharing.
There needs to be a better option…
How EFSS Solves These Problems
EFSS solves these issues by being a centralized place where all parties can access the latest files and documents for any given project. EFSS can be implemented as a complete digital solution for construction companies implementing a “fully-digital” operation, or as a “hybrid” solution for companies mixing digital file sharing with on-site print services.
So, EFSS effectively solves the file sharing problem, but what about security?
Security Features of EFSS
EFSS can offer you more than peace-of-mind when it comes to your information being secure. EFSS offers a variety of options, and these options depend on the individual needs of the company.
EFSS can offer staggered permission options. These are staggered permission options that are specific to the individual employee. Having an opportunity like this will enable you to keep track of who can see what and when they can see it. In addition to permission rights, you will also have access to live document tracking. Live tracking allows you to monitor the editing process of all documentation. Documentation that streams across your staff and any of the teams you have scattered across multiple locations.
EFSS Offers Enhanced Mobility
One of the most significant advantages of the majority of EFSS systems is mobility. As the need for fully customizable and pliable storage solutions has evolved, high-end file sharing has become an essential part of the operation.
EFSS offers a wide range of options to suit the need of any construction company. If you require something with mobility that enables the configuration of networks quickly, then a private, cloud-based EFSS setup may be just what you need. Alternatively, you may opt for the interchangeable and stable standalone network. Whatever your requirement, EFSS platforms are flexible enough to be able to cater to your every need.
Implementation Of EFSS
Like many construction companies, your attention is on your projects. Finding the time to implement a solution like EFSS can seem quite daunting. Like any solution, there’s also other problems to consider like hardware that can handle your EFSS. The answer, of course, would be to consult with an IT company, like TotalIT, that specializes in the needs of construction companies and can implement a cost-effective solution for you.
A qualified Managed IT Services Company, preferably one that specializes in IT Services for Construction Companies like Total IT, will also be able to help you with other aspects other than the file sharing solution. They’ll be able to work with ISPs and configure hardware for your temporary job site office locations reliably and efficiently. They’ll also be able to implement a standardized cybersecurity plan so that your entire network is protected against cyber threats including ransomware, viruses, malware, and phishing.
Contact us today at 972-383-7330 to learn how we can help integrate a file-sharing solution for you. You can also schedule a Free IT Consultation to discover which setup will work best for your company’s needs.