Looking Beyond 2017's Construction Technology: Future Proofing the Capital Construction Management Software Industry

Future-Proof: To design software, a computer, etc. so that it can still be used in the future, even when technology changes.

Projectmates has a very long history of looking forward and seeing emerging technology trends that will impact the market. Dating back to the year 2000, Projectmates immediately saw the need for constant communication in the construction industry for updating project statuses.

In the early 2000's when smartphones were becoming more widely used, the company's response was to develop a mobile app for the Palm and Blackberry mobile devices. Fast-forward to today with smartphones being an integral part of everyone's lives, Projectmates is a front runner for the capital construction industry by creating native apps for Android and iPhone devices.

The current estimations predict that there will be several billion connected devices by 2020. Projectmates takes advantage of the internet of things by putting project data in the cloud. By putting the information in the cloud, the data is accessible and updated instantly giving everyone a single source of truth.

The key to harnessing the future mobility of the cloud is to make everything accessible to the individuals assigned (role based permissions) and to secure that sensitive information so that it is not extracted with malicious intent.

By looking to the future, Projectmates created native mobile apps for the iPhone and Android. Users can utilize the app for construction document and photo management, schedule management, field reports, RFIs, submittals, punch lists, cost tracking and more.

The new annotations and markup tool allow users to annotate and markup drawings and documents within a project. This is done by letting you circle, highlight, provide comments and even attach images directly from your camera to a PDF.

Push notifications eliminate the need to check emails constantly, and the new app makes it easy to see new announcements as well as interact with them. Push notifications will even go to connected smart watches. What Projectmates offers is one app to do what had historically taken over five different apps.

In addition to those features, Projectmates also keeps a steady eye on threats and vulnerabilities to standard systems. Being vigilant about client data security is key to future proofing technologies and being a leader in the industry. One key factor is not using ActiveX controls for the cloud based software.

Introduced in 1996, ActiveX was initially controversial because even though it could support more programming languages compared to JavaBeans, critics were quick to point out the security issues.

Moreover, Projectmates took it on themselves to become SOC 2 Type II compliant and goes through yearly audits to keep the prestigious certification. The annual audits include everything from financial strength and longevity of the company to firewall security and disaster recovery capabilities, as well as ensuring security compliance for all employees.

The SOC 2 Type II report has become paramount to owners dealing with capital construction projects that need to manage multiple moving parts.

In essence, it ensures all clients and users of Projectmates that their physical server (where their data is stored) is safe and secure as well as the Systemates employees who access it." — Nicole Countryman, MBA, Director of Sales

Beyond keeping the data safe, Projectmates is a vocal advocate of working hand in hand with clients. This is done by keeping communication open and listening to how the versatile 40 module software is used and what features clients would like to see in the future.

Each update to Projectmates is done to increase ease of use and functionality. Throughout its history, client demand has led to the enhancement of many features, including more robust budget tracking. For example, a single-site location can contain separate budgets for remodels and other special projects, which gives owners full visibility into a property's financial history.

Future-proofing technology is essential to what makes Projectmates an industry leader. Increasing mobile access to project data, strengthening security, and listening to clients is what makes Projectmates stand out. For over twenty years, Projectmates has helped the forward momentum of construction technology.

Having a software that always stays up-to-date with changing market trends has always been important for us. We strive to deliver the technology of tomorrow, to you, today." — Hemant Bhave, AIA, Vice President

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