How iPads helped a construction company run more efficiently and save millions

The use of non-computer devices like tablets in the corporate setting are becoming as widespread as desktops. While this blog has covered many of the benefits of an iPad deployment, the main benefits of incorporating new technology really comes down to two things: increasing productivity and the bottom line.

Both of these were seen recently when global construction company Balfour Beatty found themselves in a tough situation after winning a multi-billion-dollar contract to rebuild terminals at Dallas-Forth Worth airport. A recent article from CITEWorld highlighted what changes needed to be implemented to not only make the project doable, but more efficient than ever.

According to the piece, problems arose when the architectural and planning documents were expected to total 60,000 pages. This was because the redesign was going to cut across multiple systems, including communication, security and concessions.

"We came to the conclusion that trying to run this project on paper would be problematic – or we'd need to hire much bigger superintendents to carry the paper around," Jeff Pistor, a senior project manager for the company's U.S. central region, told the news source.

This led the company to invest in new technology. It purchased 50 iPads for the superintendents in the field, partnered with a document management service, PDF editing software and a hybrid cloud solution. The system is centered on a computer in one of the work trailers, which is wired to the internet. Here, managers can make larger changes and push the edited documents into the cloud for everyone to access.

Along with the tablets, the company set up digital plan tables with 55-inch monitors and an Apple TV box. This allows groups to gather around the screens, wirelessly connect the iPad through the Apple TV and easily collaborate.

This system has saved the company $1.2 million in two and a half years by cutting printing and paper costs. According to Pistor, there has also not been a single mistake on site because of outdated plans – which was once a common occurrence.