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Data Management: How Construction Safety Goes Beyond the Field 

When considering how to make construction projects safer, managers typically focus on safety practices in the field … from fall hazards to standards around enclosed spaces to wearable technology. 

And as the COVID-19 pandemic emerged, organizations made new adaptations for shift work for social distancing, handwashing policies and new PPE, all in the name of creating a safer work environment. 

But what about the things we cannot see? What if there was a way to learn more information – including about risks – for your project? Would you consider that to be part of your safety plan? If not, you should. 

During Construction Safety Week, we want to tell you why: 

Everything related to a construction project, whether on-site or in the back office, generates information that can be used in new or different ways. By collecting, aggregating and analyzing data electronically, organizations can spot anomalies, make more informed decisions, relay critical information to other stakeholders and see how changes impact the project overall.  

Think of it as connecting dots. Each department has dozens of pieces of information – or dots – for one project. These “dots” could be images, inspection reports, daily logs, cost assessments, weather reports and more. And there are numerous departments that all need to work together but may not readily have access to all the best data.  

Digitalizing this information properly will connect all the dots from each department to create a holistic picture of the project at a high level while still having the ability to drill down into the specifics as desired.   

To make your safety plan complete, your digital project information must be reliable, easy to upload and review and accessible for everyone. The safety of your digital information is critical, and you should consider a construction project management information system that is FedRAMP authorized, which provides the highest level of security as recognized by the federal government. 

According to Dodge Data & Analytics, strong safety management will always be a good business investment. Seventy-eight percent of organizations have been able to negotiate better insurance terms, 66% of organizations have improved their ability to bring in new work and 61% also saw improved employee retention due to smart investments in safety.  

As you round out your safety plans, take time to consider how digitalizing your project data can help you maintain the highest level of safety possible. Look for a project management tool that makes it easy to collect and analyze information, share data with others and provide dynamic dashboards and reports to produce the most complete picture of your projects and programs. 

About the Author

Sara Giddens is an Industry Director at Kahua specializing in government and commercial construction. She has over 10 years of experience around industry engagement, market research & strategy, and construction content creation.

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