5 Reasons Your Construction Apps Need a Common Data Platform

April 17, 2018 Tristam Wallace

One look at the technology stack used for construction management and project delivery processes and it's evident that the 'there's an app for that' strategy is on full display. So much so, that we are inundated with individual construction apps as spot solutions for each of our needs.

Although these tools all do a great job at addressing our targeted issues, transferring information from one app to the next isn’t always a streamlined process. We now face the challenge of juggling multiple softwares, not having clear lines on when to use one tool vs. another, and losing key data and information along the way. 

Autodesk BIM 360 is built to address these challenges as the industry’s first, unified design-to-construction platform. 


Check Out Our 3-Minute Video Overview of the New BIM 360 Platform for Construction Apps




Why choose a platform instead of a set of construction apps?

As technology becomes more widely adopted throughout the construction project lifecycle, we have to choose software that actually helps streamline workflows and keep teams focused on being efficient. It’s easy, especially in the construction tech space right now, to get distracted by too many software solutions and overburden your team with choices. 

Rather than working in siloed systems, choosing a Common Data Platform (CDP) tool integrates the entire project workflow from design through construction. Teams can easily transfer information from one phase to the next while housing all project documentation and data in one centralized location.

The benefits to working in this type of structure are vast, but here are the top 5 reasons why moving project workflows into a common data platform is worth it:

1. A Centralized, or Single, Source of Truth

Instead of sourcing information from multiple locations, all project data lives in the same ecosystem. This means that teams have access to the most up to date information as they need it and eliminates multiple iterations and the costly time of rework. Furthermore, it allows project data to be captured throughout all phases, from design to preconstruction all the way through construction and project handover. This data capture allows Project Managers and Executives to make more informed data driven business decisions. 

BIM_360_Single Source of Truth-1

With BIM 360, all project information is available in the common data platform. This keep everyone on the same page, whether they are performing design reviews, responding to an RFI or running a quality inspection.


2. Easier Team Handoffs

With cloud based connectivity and access on both mobile and desktop, teams can easily access documents and drawings from one phase to the next. Since there is no longer a need to build in the time it takes to transfer information from one software to the next, teams can quickly digest information and move on to more important tasks.

“Prior to BIM 360, the sharing of data was a full-time job. Not only are we able to have anytime, anywhere access to one data repository, but everyone knows that’s the latest data. Everyone comes to BIM 360 to make decisions.”


3. Improved Decision-Making

Decision-making is improved by providing visibility into the items that are most important to handle. This helps to lessen the burden on individuals to pour through hundreds, if not thousands of data points, every day in order to make decisions and prioritize work. Instead, this can be replaced by centralizing this data to more simply analyze trends, patterns and correlations in real-time, and extract actionable insights and a prediction of potential risks. This same set of data can be extended to drive continuous improvement by extending this access to data not just to an individual project and point in time, but overall views into your portfolio.


With information in a common data platform, workers on the jobsite have access to the data they need to make informed decisions that lead to more predictable and profitable outcomes.


4. Controlled Information

Throughout a project, information needs to be passed from team to team -- and phase to phase -- as the project progresses. These handover points pose a number of risks, including file compatibility, loss of detail as information moves from one application to another, and the risk of errors and omissions through manual processes. The CDP structure helps to mitigate these risks by automating the handover process when possible, and applying project controls when human intervention is still needed.

5. Removing Disconnection

Construction operates in a fragmented way, with a high level of disconnection between project phases and uncertainty throughout the project. By removing data silos and supporting interoperability between work phases, the CDP workflow allows project teams to accurately predict project outcomes and automate processes. 

Ready to Get Started?

As announced last fall at Autodesk University, the next-generation BIM 360 platform is fully integrating design and construction information into a Common Data Platform. Rather than providing single solutions for each phase of a project, teams are able to access more accurate project information where and when they need it from different modules within the platform.

We're making the next-generation BIM 360 platform available in a newly packaged set of products -- BIM 360 Design, BIM 360 Glue and BIM 360 Build -- to support various construction process workflows and the people who are involved in them, all tied together on the common data platform. 

Interested in learning more about the next-generation BIM 360 platform?

Contact us!


"Construction software is so fragmented with endless vendors claiming to offer the best mousetrap for each particular process. PARIC is trying to solve all of our problems as seamlessly as possible, and Autodesk BIM 360 could ultimately be our backbone to connect everyone from design to ownership in one place." - Andy Leek, Director, Virtual Design and Construction, PARIC.


Want to experience the power of connected construction apps?  


Check Out The Beginner's Guide to Connecting Construction Data and Documents!



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