Why Consigli went Low Code for project management

When a construction company takes on a job, the job can involve complex inputs from a multitude of professionals, including contractors, architects, and building committees – but using a low -code for project management can alleviate some of the headaches that might arise in the process.

“We often, and most construction companies, struggle with managing all this information,” says Anthony Chiaradonna, CIO for Consigli, a construction company and general contractor that operates throughout the Northeast. Its projects may include large-scale hotels, commercial buildings in large cities, and high schools.

Some of the main technology tools Consigli has used in the past to manage its projects include PM solutions, accounting systems and modeling, Chiaradonna explains. Over the years, supporting documents such as spreadsheets and OneNote also had to be collected and managed, he says. Such a mix can get a bit chaotic to follow. Resources such as Excel and SharePoint have also been used in the past to manage this data, Chiaradonna says, and even further with Microsoft Access. “The data is starting to spread everywhere,” he says.

While Consigli has had success working with such tools, Chiaradonna says consistency can sometimes be an issue, and in some cases the resource may not be web-based at the time. “That’s where we found Quick base,” he says.

Initial objective: purchasing management

Transitioning to Quickbase’s low-code platform has allowed Consigli to follow a project’s lifecycle and be agile, Chiaradonna says. The original focus of implementing low-code was procurement management, which included seeing how a subcontract awarded for part of a project related to the overall budget. “It’s something we had done in Excel, then we migrated it to SharePoint,” he says. “It was the first app we moved into Quickbase.”

The initial move to Quickbase took about two months or less to get up and running and stop using old resources, he says. Consigli quickly found other uses for the platform, including staffing, which was managed through Excel and a scheduling tool. This secondary transition took a little over a month, Chiaradonna says. “Once we had the basic project in there, it was easy to keep adding different components.” The implementation also didn’t require the hiring of additional IT staff, he says.

Consigli measured his return on investment by adopting Quickbase, Chiaradonna explains, partly on improving his jobs’ metrics and key performance indicators (KPIs) instead of having a job send in spreadsheets to generate KPIs. “We’re able to connect our Power BI environment to Quickbase and automatically update our corporate dashboards instead of having data duplication,” he says, which saves time.

Consigli also tidied up its resources, Chiaradonna says, looking at functions and tasks that were performed outside of its existing systems, were insecure and had no place in a traditional ERP (enterprise resource planning ) or PM (project management) tool. This allowed the consolidation of different sets of information into Quickbase, he says.

It also allowed for quicker changes to projects, Chiaradonna says. “We can make a change to a field, and everyone would see it. Before, we had to send a spreadsheet or whatever. »

Low-Code Platform Helps Consistency

The current hiring market is a challenge for the construction industry, as in other industries, and Chiaradonna says using a low-code platform helps alleviate some of that need. new talents. “What I can do is give [our team] effective, easy-to-learn and easy-to-use tools to improve their work,” he says. When new talent is found, the availability of low-code tools can also make their work easier and more consistent, says Chiaradonna. “As we transfer people to different jobs, they know how it works there. Someone didn’t create a spreadsheet about this job that they now need to learn and understand. »

As Consigli strives to innovate, a tool like Quickbase allows the company to pilot other project management tools, he says. “In some cases, once we’ve tested it, we don’t even need to buy that tool,” says Chiaradonna. For example, in the area of ​​risk and security management, Consigli needed to collect data and created a pilot application in Quickbase, explains Chiaradonna. Orientation data, which tracks workers who complete a safety orientation on a job site, can promote a safer work environment, he says. It can also track incidents that may occur on a construction site, explains Chiaradonna. “There are a lot of point tools that do this, but then we’ll have to stop, try to integrate them.”

Consigli discovered another advantage by making the transition to a low-code platform. Chiaradonna says he opposed the infiltration of shadow computing into the business, but Quickbase gave him a different perspective. “I’m able to put things in the hands of our departments and say, ‘Why don’t you try to pilot something?’ he says. “I can be sure it’s repeatable, it’s secure, there’s something we can control and integrate instead of finding a tool that may or may not work, or may or may not be secure.”

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