As the government has rolled out several plans to build the country’s key infrastructure, New Zealand is facing a massive infrastructure deficit, a new report from Civil Contractors New Zealand (CCNZ) has shown. From major road projects to the Three Waters reform programme, it is projected that a 30 per cent staff increase will be needed in some parts of the infrastructure workforce. Thankfully, while civil engineer shortages are here to stay throughout the country, advancements in technology providing real-time data have enabled civil construction businesses to improve their productivity.
Having a bird’s eye view of all your assets
Specialised equipment and machinery can be scattered across job sites and managing all your assets can be quite tricky. Luckily, you no longer need to rely on phone calls or the CB radio to know exactly where your assets are at any given time.
By using GPS-enabled technology, whether you’re based on-or-off-site, you’ll instantly know where all your equipment is, why it’s there, and whether equipment is being used efficiently. From hardwired telematics for your truck and dogs or yellow iron, right through to compact devices for your unpowered assets, these IP67-rated technologies are ruggedly designed to withstand the rigours of life on jobsites. With options for battery powered telematics, you can even track and locate everything from trailers and containers through to ladders and toolboxes.
For different businesses or contractors, this can help you in many ways – from under-utilisation and preventing lost equipment, to recovering stolen assets sooner, accounting for hire/rental costs, and ultimately improving your ROI. Once you reduce your upkeep on assets that have been collecting dust, you can focus on investing into other equipment utilised daily.
Bulk earthworks, a costly exercise of any construction project, can also benefit from telematics. The removal of bulk earth is like the inner mechanics of a watch. A minor setback can push your entire timeline out and create major headaches down the road. The unique real-time data allows you to schedule in maintenance on the faulty piece of equipment to reduce downtime, see where and how assets are used, and anticipate problems ahead of times. With the right technology, everyone within the business will benefit from a smoother operation and better efficiencies.
Making data-backed decisions remotely
By gathering data through telematics, you can effectively manage operations to ensure the smooth workflow without having to be on the job site. When job sites span tens of kilometres, you could be on the other side of an infrastructure project, and still delve into any project remotely.
From managing budgets and timelines right through to the movement of traffic, real-time insights allow you to make the right decisions across the board. Having a view into each project wherever you are, you can bill correctly and prove the works completed for accurate, fast invoicing while minimise complaints.
Information provided through fleet management software also helps you understand the costs at each stage better, which ultimately leads to you getting a leg up on the competition. By combining data from machines and other sources, such as fuel, materials and labour, on business analytics platforms, you can more accurately pitch for future work and remain competitive in the market.
This data can also be used to calculate RUC. Since a lot of projects are considered off-road, you can use this historical information to accurately apportion on- and off-road use of assets and their auxiliary equipment. As part of the government’s transport temporary relief package RUC rates will be reduced by 36% between 21 April and 21 July 2022. Instead of leaving a considerable amount of money on the table, you can rest assured that you’ve accurately calculated time on- and off-road and the associated RUC licences.
By using existing technology and human resources to the fullest those in the construction industry can better meet increasing infrastructure construction demands.