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Documenting Your Jobsites in the Wake of COVID-19

Mar 26, 2020

Last week I kicked off our first educational webinar in a series that we are planning to run every Tuesday and Thursday at 2PM EDT for the next 8 weeks. To see that webinar and learn more about the digital tools we are planning to cover throughout this series click here. You can register for future webinars on the NECA Learning Center website. We would love to hear from our members to make sure we are providing you with education on the appropriate tools. Please go to our digital tools survey and let us know how we can best help inform you and your companies as many of you will be working from home in the coming weeks and this is a great time to sharpen your skills.

We offered a poll on the webinar yesterday to gauge the audience’s interest in the digital tools we presented. One of the most highly rated items in the poll was the use of 360° cameras to document jobsites. Many project managers have found it increasingly hard to visit all their jobsites on a frequent basis as they are faced with managing more and more jobs in addition to more traffic on the roads.

Today we face a novel problem of not being allowed on job sites due to COVID-19. A great example of how photos were used to document a building, is in the aftermath of the Notre Dame Cathedral fire. Tourist photos have been critical for the construction workers to reference during the restoration process. If your company has not yet developed a process to document jobsites photos there is no time better than now. Imagine having the ability to visit any jobsite from anywhere on any device. That can easily be achieved with the tools we have available to us today. 

Notre Dame Photogrammetry

Image from - https://sketchfab.com/3d-models/notre-dame-crowdsourced-photogrammetry-c6f03e2284e049f38f118378b012c979

Today we have new technologies in 360° cameras and software solutions that help streamline the documentation of projects. While 360° cameras are great tools they are not designed to be used with ease on jobsites. Apps like StructionSite, OpenSpace and HoloBuilder make it easy for electrical contractors to link 360° photos and videos to locations on their floor plans and tag information in the images. Some of these solutions allow contractors to document progress and use features that allow you to go back in time and see when the walls were framed up, when the electrical rough-in took place to drywall being hung and finished. These tools also have integrations with BIM tools allowing users to compare the design to as-built conditions. The best thing about these tools is that they are easy to learn. The hardest part is making time to take the photos and videos. 

Image from - https://www.structionsite.com/platform/

How to get started quickly

First you need to find the right 360° Camera. Camera Recommendations Guide

360 Cameras

Next you need to select an app. StructionSite is offering a 60-day access to their platform for any new customer for quick documentation needs in response COVID-19. Users who do not wish to continue using the system after 60 days will have the ability to fully export their project data - drawings and hyperlinked 360 photos - in an offline format for archiving. As always, there is also no cost for data export. To learn more about the details of the offer and how to use the software

Click here for additional details on the 60-Day Access of StructionSite and their get started guide.