Top Ways Data Collection Reveals New Business Opportunities 

The construction industry knows data is a top priority, but there remains confusion around how to collect it, how to store it and what to use it for. Still, it’s an intimidating undertaking, which is why many construction business leaders get overwhelmed and put data collection and analysis on the backburner. But, as the saying goes, if the best time to start was yesterday, the next best time is today. 

Joining host Mike Merrill on this episode of the Mobile Workforce Podcast is David Campbell, the co-host of the Brewing with BIM Podcast and the Application Specialist at Topcon Solutions, a leader in providing AEC technology and training. David shares commonly asked questions on data collection, digital twins, and common data. He gives tips on teaching your teams to interact with that data, and talks through software that stores data and the best ways to pull meaningful insights from the data you have. 

 

Key Takeaways:

  1. Common data is the cornerstone of a well built tech stack. Common data allows all of the information coming in and out of your business to be centralized. This allows activity to be tracked and shared with the entire leadership team. By implementing common data, every decision being made on job sites and in the office are based on the same point of reference, which simplifies the entire operation.
  2. Creating a digital twin eliminates mistakes. A digital twin is an online duplication of the project where everything that will be, or has been done, is represented and accounted for in the cloud. This gives future new owners and maintenance staff the ability to make the right upkeep and design decisions 20+ years down the road. A digital twin isn’t just valuable to the owner after a project is completed, it is a valuable commodity starting when the general contractor breaks ground at the job site.
  3. Review your data processes every six months to a year. Once you have a system in place, it needs to be continuously reviewed for maximum efficiency. As a team you should be reviewing how you are handling and using your data. The more a company tracks their projects, the more they’ll learn from the data that gets collected. For example, you can start by collecting and using your project progress and payroll data to run both reports. Once that is established the next step would be to connect the two to start tracking and understanding your labor efficiency. In today’s market these opportunities to improve productivity cannot be wasted.

 

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Episode Transcript

Mike Merrill:

Hello, and welcome to the Mobile Workforce Podcast. I’m your host, Mike Merrill. And today we are sitting down with David Campbell. David is an Application Specialist at Topcon Solutions, a leading provider of AEC technology and training. He is also the cohost of the Brewing with BIM, a pretty cool podcast that’s a lot of fun to listen to. And David has a wealth of knowledge on implementation, data management, and also workforce education. So today we’re going to talk about data collection and what is considered common data that’s collected, as well as how these two things improve construction projects. So David, welcome to the podcast today. Excited to have you on.

David Campbell:

Thank you for having me. I’m excited to be here.

Mike Merrill:

Awesome. So, one of the things that I mentioned a minute ago, you have some oversight or some connection to training for job sites. So how does your job and training relate to implementations of new technologies?

David Campbell:

So, typically what I do is I would introduce people to the technology, do demonstrations, things like that. Get everybody kind of warmed up to the idea with lunch and learns. There’s many different approaches that we can use for it. But at the end of the day, what we end up doing is figuring out what’s best for the company in terms of the implementation and of what software. I use BIM 360 or the Autodesk Construction Cloud, Revit, ReCap, a lot of different tools. It just, again, kind of depends on what that company is trying to achieve.

David Campbell:

But at the end of the day, when we’re looking at an implementation for a company, it has to be a phased or kind of tiered approach. We’re looking at the different positions that would benefit from what parts. If we’re looking at project managers versus a project engineer or design engineer, they’re going to use the software a little bit differently. Well, I’m trying to step over myself there, but they’re going to use it a little bit differently than each other. So we have to really figure out exactly how it’s going to benefit them.

Mike Merrill:

Yeah. Sounds like you’re dealing with trainings for different people in different roles that would have a different, unique perspective. So how do you balance that in the trainings to make sure everybody gets what they need and their takeaways are helpful for their position?

David Campbell:

Oh, I tell them to ask questions. Questions are huge. A lot of people when you get into a training session, some people will be scared that they’re going to miss something or they’ll want to wait until the end to ask questions. I usually tell everyone that I teach right upfront, ask your questions. Don’t let me steamroll you with this data because there’s a lot of information that you’re going to learn in the class. Especially if it’s a two or three-day class, it can be very overwhelming. And to try and balance it a little bit, typically what I do is I like to get a good scope call first before the training even goes. We got to get that scope.

David Campbell:

Once we have that scope and we have that agreed upon kind of agenda, then we’ll go into the class. And me being an instructor, the agenda tells me what I need to cover during that class. But at the same time, it benefits you as an instructor to know who’s in your class. And as you’re getting to know the different personas, you start getting an idea of the directions or exercises that we can do during that class to kind of start bridging it between everyone. Because of course, one piece doesn’t fit everybody.

Mike Merrill:

Right. It makes great sense. So are there some common themes that you hear people asking at the beginning? A lot of these classes, are there some parallels?

David Campbell:

Oh yeah. I mean, some of them will ask, why am I here? That’s always a good one.

Mike Merrill:

In every situation.

David Campbell:

Yeah, right. Well, in some ways they’ll ask, how is this going to benefit me? What is this doing for me and my team? And honestly, the first part of a class I’ve found is kind of feeling each other out in the sense of you want to establish yourself as a knowledgeable instructor, but at the same time, you have to do some give and some take. In terms of you have to learn from them at the same time. You have to communicate and be open with that communication to learn not only what they’re doing, but how they’re doing it. Because if you just go in and try to teach them, let’s say you’re doing a Revit class and I’m just going to show you three days of Revit, it can be overwhelming and they could leave the class feeling like they haven’t really learned anything that’s going to benefit them with their position.

David Campbell:

So right up front it’s usually good to get that out and to ask, “Hey, what is your goal with this class? At the end of the third day, if you could learn one thing and it would make you happy, what would that be?” And you’re not trying to get, hey, I’m just going to go ahead and teach that person that, and this is going to be an easy class. No, what we’re really trying to do in that sense is to figure out, okay, what is most important to you and what are the steps that we need to take to kind of get there?

David Campbell:

I’ve often found that a lot of people will ask, if it’s a BIM 360 class, or if it’s a Revit class, they’ll start asking about how do I start getting other people within my company to use this? How are others that do the same thing I do, how are other mechanical engineers or project managers, how do they use this program? That’s a very common question because a lot of times people don’t know what they don’t know, and we want to be able to show them. But at the same time, you don’t want to open up the flood gates all at one time, because it’s like drinking water from a fire hose, it’ll be too much.

Mike Merrill:

Right. Yeah. I’m gathering from what you’re saying, there’s always a learning curve and it could vary depending on the person or their role. But I think that’s a great insight for people to understand going in. This is going to take some time. This isn’t going to just roll itself out and jump up and start tap dancing on the desk as soon as you can install the system or connect up to the cloud, right?

David Campbell:

Yes, sir. Yeah. There’s always a learning curve with it. And one of the things that I’ve talked about in my industry because it’s training. And a lot of people will feel like, okay, well we bought the software. Why do we want to spend more money on training? Well, because the way to look at it is there’s always a learning curve. Always. Now, there is a way to shorten that learning curve, but there’s still going to be the curve. There’s still going to be after training, you have to take it. And not only think about what you learned in training, but translate that into how you’re going to use it every day. How are we going to use it on our projects? How are we going to use it? Are we going to start on the existing projects that we have today? Or is this a future like we have another project coming in that we want to go ahead and spearhead this on?

David Campbell:

And a lot of times, I find that’s very beneficial for companies to do in terms of starting with a new project, because it helps them find those little nuances that are kind of a pain or the workarounds that they need to do, generate questions about how do we do this specifically? Because in that sense, if you’re already in a project, usually it’s everybody a hundred percent. It’s like a fire drill. We’re trying to get it out. We’re trying to get it done. But if you have some time with a new project coming up where you can slow things down a little bit, it’s usually pretty beneficial to start there and then go ahead and figure out what speed bumps are kind of obstacles that you might approach and how to get around that. That’s going to be part of the learning curve as well. It’s fully implementing the software, but not just to a point of where you’re using it, it’s where you’re using it and excelling with it.

Mike Merrill:

Okay. Yeah. I’m really hearing two different things there. The first one is you really have to have a keen focus on that number one goal, or what’s most important for your role. And then number two, you have to have an open mind and be flexible to kind of take in what other benefits that you can add to that main goal. Would that be right?

David Campbell:

Yes sir, exactly. Yeah. Having an open mind is huge. A lot of people need to, I would say they don’t need to, but it’s a good idea to take a step back and open up your mind to how is this going to change what I do currently? I do find that in some classes, some people have been very stuck with their process and the way they do it currently. And okay, that’s great. It works for you. But that may not be how this new software works. Now, we can do the same thing. It’s just a different way of thinking. And in that sense, when we can open their minds and start looking at, okay, we’ve always done it this way, but let’s go ahead and try it this way and see what happens. A lot of times once we get that adoption or that mindset kind of set, it’s a little bit easier in terms of communicating and really to, I guess, get into the software itself. It’s really where you’re one track minded where you get that pushback saying, well, we’ve always done it this way. Why should we change it?

Mike Merrill:

Right. Yeah. That makes sense. So I know Topcon, obviously a huge company. Go to the big trade shows, CONEXPO or World of Concrete. You guys have huge booths. There’s all kinds of really cool tech. But when I boil it down and I think of Topcon, I think of data. I think you guys just gather a lot of data. What is it about that that’s so important or what should companies be prioritizing with the data that they’re looking to collect or that they should be collecting?

David Campbell:

Well, I would say the amount of data and how you’re using it. Like these great scanners that we have, a lot of times, I mean, laser scanners are awesome and they will generate you a nice full picture or an as-built conditions of a building or a site. But a lot of times people will stop there. And the problem with that is you have all of this data that you can use in more ways than one, but you don’t. In the sense of, if we can use it to generate surfaces to know what our cuts and fills are going to be, or if we know that something existing needs to be moved or we’re going to reuse it in the actual model itself, having that data available to you, knowing where the pipes are running through your buildings or the utilities are coming in. Different things like that, they’re very beneficial to have.

David Campbell:

But kind of pushing it to that next level as well is making sure that everyone in that project has access to the data. That’s going to be your biggest thing is not only visualization into the project, but access. I like to say my common data environment. That gives everybody that access point to find that data and to essentially dive into it and use it how they need to. Because of course, different positions are going to translate that data differently.

Mike Merrill:

Well, yeah. And you’re talking about all these different data types and what comes to mind for me is I’m thinking some, like a project manager, might need data on a daily basis to make sure the job’s running smoothly, but maybe the HR or legal department, if you’re a large enough company, they’ve got a whole different goal with this. This is all about reducing risk and liability. So that data may be far more critical in the end than the project manager’s data, but it’s only utilized when there’s a problem. So I think understanding the importance of why, which you mentioned, is the key to all of this.

David Campbell:

Yes, sir. Yeah. And I think that’s a great point that you bring up. A great example as well, because we start looking at construction projects during COVID times. And a lot of times like the laser scans, again, for example, they’ll be used to kind of generate that picture of what’s going on or what those as-built existing conditions are. But we’re starting to see them used more for also safety. They can generate safety issues. Or they’re using it to track construction progress. And in terms of if we start talking about accounting, if you’re looking at paying for different projects or different, I can’t remember what I was going to call it, but essentially your different assemblies that are being installed on the site as your subcontractors come out, if they do one portion of the work, we’re going to go ahead and pay them for it. Well, we want to evaluate that and essentially make sure that everything is the way we specified. So this data can be used by so many different people in so many different ways. We just have to figure out how to interpret it.

Mike Merrill:

And of course, you’ve got to collect it in the first place in order to do anything.

David Campbell:

That’s it. Yes, sir. It has to be there.

Mike Merrill:

So, at what point does somebody who’s implemented a new technology or a new solution, at what point can they say, okay, this now has become a valuable tool and I’m glad we did it. This implementation was successful. Are there benchmarks or things that you could, check points, you could point out?.

David Campbell:

Yeah. So a lot of times what we’ll do is we roadmap with our clients or with our customers and figure out where they are now and where they want to be. And essentially what we do with that is kind of as you’re saying there, we do a phased approach to generally a month or two after they’ve been using the software, we do a check-in and we’ll say, “Hey, what are your questions? How are you guys doing with your projects? Do you guys need any screen shares?” That’s another kind of service that we’ll offer is jump in and do project-based consulting with a screen-share and say, okay, these are the issues that we’re running into.

David Campbell:

Generally I would say six months to a year down the road, they’re already full steam ahead and they’re just trying to push it in new ways at that point in terms of figuring out how else can we use this and who can use it. A lot of times I’ll work with general contractors and they’ll start a design bill. Well, their design engineers are using it for drafting, but the field personnel have also found a use for creating their schedules or their bill of materials, generating that quick information, or being able to just jump into the model and take measurements and dimensions is very valuable for them. So it’s again, kind of checking in and seeing, okay, is the communication here open? And how else can, let’s say, we use this data in what ways?

Mike Merrill:

Yeah. It’s like running financial reports. You don’t need to know necessarily certain things every day, but once a week would be really nice. Monthly has got to be probably minimum. But if you don’t look at your finances but twice a year, I hope it’s going well.

David Campbell:

Yeah, right. It could be bad juju.

Mike Merrill:

So, lots of data types, lots of roles that need to leverage that data. I mentioned at the top the term common data. What would you say would be some common data points that you would consider that fit that definition?

David Campbell:

Well, so again, kind of from the Topcon perspective, I’ll use a lot of the Autodesk like BIM 360 or the Construction Cloud. We’ve also seen box, Dropbox, Citrix. It’s an area where all of the team members, project stakeholders, can go to access this information. And there’s so many different kinds out there. My biggest point with it though, is of course figuring out what works for your company, but also staying connected. That’s a huge piece with all of this. If your models are updating and you can’t see them as they’ve updated, are they valuable? If you’re creating RFIs, if you’re creating submittals, if you’re creating issues or even if you’re doing clash detection and coordination with a model or with a project, is it connected?

David Campbell:

If you’re trying to use two or three different softwares and you’re trying to bring everything together, you need to have it in a common data environment, whether it’s folder structures or what have you, you need to have it available for the different stakeholders in the sense of yes, the RFI is going to be valuable for the contractor, for the architect, the engineer, what have you, but they’re also going to be valuable for the owner and for any owner’s reps or anyone financing the project to see what’s going on and why are they behind schedule? Why are they applying for this change order? Why is this happening? If you can really start getting that paper trail and establishing the connection between that data, it starts really helping everyone in the project to get on the same page. And it helps those decisions get made sooner.

Mike Merrill:

That’s critical. Quicker decisions made better. So just for clarity, the term common data, someone might hear that and think, oh, well, that’s just common data. That’s data that everybody has. But what you’re talking about is data that is common among each stakeholder and everybody has access to. Is that right?

David Campbell:

Yes, sir. Yep.

Mike Merrill:

Okay. All right. So that’s great. I love the idea of that visibility across your team.

David Campbell:

Yes, sir. Yeah. And it’s very important for all of the different projects going on today, whether they’re small residential or they’re bigger commercial. To have that connectivity, to have that common environment where everyone that’s involved in the project can go into as I said, even residential with homeowners being able to go in and look at that 3d model of their home and look at the different materials and be able to provide input with what’s going on with that house. It’s very valuable for a contractor as well as an owner.

Mike Merrill:

Love it. So I’ve heard you talk in the past about, I think this relates to what we were just talking about, about a digital twin. What does that term mean and why is that actually important?

David Campbell:

Well, digital twin has kind of been a buzzword in our industry for a little bit, but what we’ve found is that the digital twin is when you have a full, let’s say digital copy of that model or that building of the site, of the building, what have you. The reason why it’s important to have a digital twin is to, again, give everyone visualization or the capability of visualization into that project, into the building, into the site. And this doesn’t just start and stop at owners or the design engineers, the drafts people, whatever. It doesn’t really stop there. There are so many different ways to look at this in terms of usage. Whether it’s facilities management, your maintenance team needs to look at an air handling unit and find the warranty information that goes along with it, or who replaced these different parts last. Or if a piece of equipment, a pump has been replaced.

David Campbell:

It’s important to know that not just of course for keeping the building as it is, but if that owner in 10 or 15 years wants to update it, if they want new construction to happen, or they’re going to sell that building and they want to actually hand this off to someone else, being able to hand over a digital twin, in the sense of you’re handing over this full 3d model that has all of your assets in it, all the piping, everything’s modeled and tracked and updated. That’s a very valuable thing to be able to hand over to someone. And I’m actually going to talk about this tonight, my Tap Tour presentation I got going on, but 80% of the buildings in the United States are over 20 years old.

David Campbell:

And in saying that, 80% is a pretty high number to think about when you start looking at, do we have as-built drawings for those? Are they in CAD? Are they paper? Or most of the time when I was working in architecture, I wouldn’t have anything to start with. I’d go find a paper roll, but it was all tattered and falling apart. It’s hard to really start translating what’s in that building. And then you don’t know what’s in the walls. You don’t know what’s above the ceiling. If anything’s been added. It’s really difficult to really get your feet under you for this project. And yeah, that’s on TNI jobs, but at the same time, as we’re finding in construction, most of our projects are TNI. We’re doing a lot of rehab to bring up our current infrastructure, but the current

David Campbell:

Yeah. I mean our current buildings, or what have you that we have today, a lot of times it costs so much money to be able to build a new building, but it’s even costing more to go into a TNI job because there’s unknowns. And if we can really start getting rid of the unknowns and arming people with that information or that data to make the best decisions that they can, whether they’re purchasing the building or they’re wanting to restore it, or they’re just wanting to go through and update different things in their building.

Mike Merrill:

Well, I’ve got to believe that if you’re talking 20 years ago, we were just starting in business and collecting data on PalmPilots, disconnected, no such thing as wifi. No Bluetooth, even. So I don’t believe that 90% of the buildings that are 20 years old or older have anything digital other than maybe the blueprints.

David Campbell:

Yep.

Mike Merrill:

It’s a great point you make and very, very interesting statistic. So when you talk about TNI, just for the listeners that don’t understand, what does that acronym refer to?

David Campbell:

Essentially it’s going into a building and rehabbing it. I call it TNI, but I cannot think of what the acronym exactly stands for, but I’ve always known it as restoring or rehabbing a building. And for some reason I’m blanking out.

Mike Merrill:

Ha Ha you’re getting older.

David Campbell:

That’s it. But yeah, it’s restoring or rehabbing an existing building.

Mike Merrill:

Okay. Got it. So, one of the things of course when I hear you talking about this sharing of data, we’re talking about cloud technology obviously. This comes up a lot on our podcast and a lot of the other podcasts for construction and technology that I listen to. There are still companies out there that are resistant to the cloud or have concerns. Is there anything you would say to them that you feel like might resonate a little bit better than maybe some of the information that they’ve had in the past if they’re still not a believer?

David Campbell:

Yes and no. I would say that in some ways you’re not going to change a person’s mindset if they completely distrust it. Now, I could tell you that most things are on Amazon Web Servers and at that point, hey, do you buy things from Amazon? Do you give them your credit card information? Do you trust Amazon to hold your credit card information, deliver your stuff to your house and not end up taking everything that you have? Well, at the same time, I think it’s becoming more and more standard honestly, to use cloud processes nowadays. You’re seeing companies like Bluebeam or Autodesk who are both actually hosting data on the Amazon Web Servers. Now they’ve both actually been certified by… I can’t remember exactly what the certification was. It was from the government. They’ve actually been certified-

Mike Merrill:

Talked to maybe compliance?

David Campbell:

Yes, yes. Actually that is it. They’ve gotten the compliance certification to host that data on their servers. So in saying that, you know it’s secure. If the government is going to utilize it, you know it’s secure. Well, okay. Maybe on paper, right? Yeah, maybe take that one just back a little bit. But it’s new. And let’s say this, that the cloud technology itself is not as new, but pushing all of your data up to the cloud. It is this new idea that is really coming out big in the AEC industry because everybody wants to be kept up on the same page. Everybody wants to know that when this MEP model updates and they had a clash where one of my pipes was going through a column, has that been updated? If it has been updated, how did they update it? If this pipe is going through this HVAC duct, have they dropped it down? Have they put it over? We didn’t know what happened.

David Campbell:

I guess this is the other kind of point I wanted to make is we need to look at how having that cloud connectivity benefits us at the same time because we’re always doing that balancing act. Yes, we want to make sure everything is secure. We have to. We don’t want to leave anything out so it gets stolen. But we also want to make sure that it’s going to be beneficial for us to use in a way that is going to better what we can deliver, and better our turnaround times.

Mike Merrill:

Yeah. It’s the old risk versus reward argument about making any decision. If the value of moving this direction is greater and the benefits are greater than the potential risk or the cost of staying the same, which what we know and we see, and I think most companies are understanding now. If you’re behind technologically from your peers in construction, you’re going to have a really hard time competing. And especially when it comes to the workforce. You hand a clipboard to some kid that just graduated with a construction management degree out of college and he’s going to look at you cross-eyed and want to throw it back at you. He’s not going to know what to do with it, right?

David Campbell:

No. Where’s my iPad?

Mike Merrill:

Yeah, right. Yep. So, we’re talking about the cloud technology. We’re talking about this TNI jobs having… In my mind, I come to think of an owner manual of your vehicle. Something that you can reference back to as it relates to that building. So that would be an argument for the cloud. When there’s an update, when there’s been a rehab done, or when there’s been new work completed, or in addition, you’ve got that documentation of not just what, but when and why and how, so that when there’s something else that needs to be done, you can reference back to that and have that most current information.

David Campbell:

Yes, sir.

Mike Merrill:

Love that. So what about avoiding unnecessary redesigns or making something actually worse off after trying to improve it? Is there any track on that that we can talk about?

David Campbell:

Yeah. So kind of going back to where we were with the cloud technologies and weighing your benefits versus risk. In terms of redesigns, it’s typically done when there’s a breakdown in communication or there’s a lack of communication. And what we’re seeing with the push to the cloud is that it really is enhancing visualization, communication and collaboration with different project teams and stakeholders. What we’re seeing is that it actually gives us the capability to remove that need to go back for the redesign or that constructability review, because it’s incorporated. Well, kind of tying back to my previous point of staying connected. If we can keep all of this data in let’s say a common data environment and keep it connected in the sense of knowing when the RFI has come up, knowing why they come up, or if there’s an issue that’s generated from the model.

David Campbell:

If we have someone that is knowledgeable, whether they’re an engineer or a contractor that gets involved with this project, let’s say sooner in the process rather than later, a lot of times they’ll be able to generate that insightful communication or those issues to say, “Hey, this isn’t constructable. This isn’t going to work like that.” And if we can get to that point of where all those stakeholders are actively engaged in the project, in this environment, within this model to tell you, “Okay, this is where our current utilities are. This is where we’re coming in. This is what we need.” You’re going to help because a lot of times in our industry, one of the biggest things, and you’ll hear this complaint across the board, when you’re going from architecture, or let’s say conceptual design or construction documents even over into what’s actually going to be constructed, there is a big gap.

David Campbell:

A lot of times these construction companies will say, “We have to redesign this model because the architect took it to this level of detail and they don’t know how this building is going to be constructed. So we actually have to build our model to how it’s going to be constructed,” which is a huge waste of time and energy. And at that point it’s like, if we could get people involved earlier in the process to see what’s going on and share or communicate that information, that knowledge that they have.

David Campbell:

These drafts people may not know exactly how it needs to be built, but if you can get that contractor, that engineer involved and to say, I’m looking at your drawings as you’re going through detailing and I notice something, let’s go ahead and bring up an issue there and say, hey, this isn’t how it’s done. I’m going to send you a drawing with… Even if you hand draw it on a napkin, you can draw something up in Bluebeam with some lines and some symbols. Just to be able to give them the insider, that visual into how it’s supposed to be done. It benefits everyone involved and especially the project.

Mike Merrill:

I love that. And I think the big thing with all of this, it’s similar in my mind to a handshake agreement or verbal discussion agreement versus something written and documented.

David Campbell:

Yes, sir.

Mike Merrill:

The plans are a documentation of what is to be built and how it’s to be built. And if we can update those, as renovations or additions are made or changes, whether it be mid-construction or 20 years down the line like we were talking, it would be critical to have that documented so everybody, like you said, is working from literally the same page.

David Campbell:

Yes, sir. Yep.

Mike Merrill:

That’s great. So a couple of quick, more personal questions. So what’s something that you are most grateful for in your professional life?

David Campbell:

That’s a good one. I am grateful for the opportunity to really get out and work with so many different people and so many different personas from the construction industry. I’ve been very grateful to work with big companies out in the Pacific Northwest to big companies in Indiana. It’s interesting because you start seeing the differences in technology or how they’re using it across even just from the West Coast to the Midwest. And that to me has been so valuable to be able to the conversations to see, okay, how is this person using it versus how is this person? And what is beneficial to them versus what is beneficial to project manager, draftsman, what have you?

David Campbell:

I’ve been grateful to be involved with this technology as it just really builds, I guess, on my passion for construction. I love construction and I do love helping people. And in my mind, the technology, and I guess the people really help bring it together. And that’s really what makes this so fun to do is that we can utilize this technology to really help owners get better buildings or get GCs to deliver projects on time and on budget. Or if it’s helping architects and drafts personnel to be able to speed up the things that they do within the program to generate these drawings faster so they’re not staying up till two, three o’clock in the morning or four o’clock in the morning, trying to get a bid set out by 6:00 AM the next day. So if you can help someone by teaching them, it’s a great feeling.

Mike Merrill:

Cool. Yeah. Giving back. All right. One more question. So what is David Campbell’s superpower?

David Campbell:

Ah, dude, my memory.

Mike Merrill:

Yeah?

David Campbell:

Yeah. For some reason, I don’t know why, but I can remember a lot of stuff. And it’s been nice because especially as I’m getting into the new software or as new things release, if it catches my eye, I’m on it. I’m all over it. And I can’t forget it. I can’t forget it.

Mike Merrill:

You’re a good old guy I guess, right?

David Campbell:

Yeah. Right. That’s it.

Mike Merrill:

You don’t hold grudges, do you?

David Campbell:

No, right.

Mike Merrill:

Cool. That’s great. Yeah. Memory. What a great asset and resource. I’m sure it served you well. All right. Lastly, main takeaway for the listeners today?

David Campbell:

So I’d say the main takeaway is to be open to technology, open to new doors opening, understand that there is going to be a learning curve with any new technology that you go to implement. Don’t approach it thinking that it’s going to be the same stuff different day. And when you’re really looking at this different technology or this hardware, software, what have you, start looking at the big picture. Don’t just think, how is this going to affect me on this project or these next two projects? Start looking at, how can this help us get better and compete more or compete better? We really want to be able to, when you want to build company, when you want to essentially build on the offerings that you have, it is good to think about the data that you can get, but also in what ways you can utilize that data. How do you optimize it?

David Campbell:

Whether it’s taking a scan and sending it through verification, or it’s scanned a BIM where you’re creating a BIM model from the scan. Or even if it’s safety positioning or accounts, accounts payable, whatever it is, figure out how anyone in your company can utilize it. That’s going to be a huge key for you is not just looking at let’s say the construction of it, because construction is so much more than just building the building. It’s paying for that building. It’s making sure the utilities are good. It’s making sure all the coordination is done. There’s so many different pieces that go into it. Start looking at how this can help you as a whole, not just one department as a whole.

Mike Merrill:

Well said. I love that. That’s great. Well, thank you so much for this insightful and enjoyable conversation today, David. I really enjoyed talking with you and having you on.

David Campbell:

Yeah, guys. Thank you so much for having me on and yeah, thank you very much. It was a great conversation and I look forward to continuing working with you guys.

Mike Merrill:

Sounds great. Well, we’ll definitely connect up again down the road. All right. Thank you to the listeners also today for joining David and I on the Mobile Workforce Podcast, sponsored by AboutTime Technologies and WorkMax. If you enjoyed the conversation that David and I had today, or gained some valuable insights, please rate and review the episode as well as the podcast generally. And of course, as always, share this with your friends and colleagues. After all, I know I can speak for David and also myself in stating that not only do we want to help you improve your business, but your life.