When you think of tools on the construction job site, most likely a saw, wrench and hammer come to mind. While these low-tech tools are still essential for construction, new high-tech tools are proving to be just as important when building a successful residential community or commercial building. New technologies for construction were created to improve efficiency and save money, but these tech tools are also attracting a new generation of workers who might otherwise be steered into other occupations.
In a recent CBC article Shaun Thorson, CEO of Skills/Compétences Canada says, “I think having those technologies will definitely appeal to young people and probably will help in recruitment. I think it also demonstrates … that there are a lot of different skill sets involved in these occupations, and they are complex.”
Boffo Building, our in-house full service construction team, builds all the residential and commercial developments for Boffo Properties. In addition, Boffo Building is the preferred construction partner for clients on their projects, from major residential renovations to new builds to office and retail fit-outs. We sat down for a Q&A with three key members of the Boffo Building team to hear directly about how adopting new technologies has changed the landscape of construction sites.
Q. How have new technologies enhanced your projects?
A. (Nitai Hall, Project Manager) We have implemented Procore as our construction management tool. It has created a more collaborative and transparent process among the internal and external teams working on our build projects. In my role as Project Manager, it saves me time because I can more easily collaborate with our trade partners and we can hold each other accountable since all the project information is readily available in one place.
Q. How has Procore helped you in your day-to-day work on the job site?
A. (Gino Pastro, Site Superintendent) Procore has transformed the daily flow of my work. Now I spend more time managing the job site and less time administering paperwork. By taking pictures and making notes on my phone throughout the day, a site report is automatically created to communicate what is happening on site with our team at the office.
Q. From your experience, have new technologies helped attract a new generation to join the construction industry? How have seasoned construction professionals adapted to using these new technologies?
A. (Daniel Boffo, Principal) The generations that have grown up with smart phones expect to have everything at their fingertips, with zero delay. With the implementation of new technology we are attracting a new generation of workers to consider construction as a career because it is now a forward thinking industry. Historically this industry has been slower to adopt new tech and our more senior team members, who have been in the construction industry for 20 or 30 years, are embracing new tech because they can see the benefits. Procore enables our team to reduce the amount of time spent on paperwork and work in a more open and collaborative way. For Boffo Building and Boffo Properties, as an integrated builder/developer, we can appreciate on a higher level the value that this brings. It is truly a win-win-win partnership for the developer, builder and our trade contractor partners.