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Six Ways Construction Companies Can Improve Utilization With SharePoint & Microsoft 365

You know there are ways to make Microsoft 365 and SharePoint work for the AECO – but how do you drive the value, the productivity, and the ROI of an investment you’ve already made? ProjectReady’s ability to unlock Microsoft 365 and SharePoint for construction teams truly sets us apart from others in the project information management system (PIMs) space. This is because our roots in collaborative project information as a solution for the AECO grew from our ability to provide unparalleled service and support for the entire M365 platform. To that end, based upon our rich experience and heritage, here are six ways construction professionals can use M365 and SharePoint for construction project management to move the needle.

1. Security

These days, you can never be too cautious when it comes to maintaining the security of your systems. Bad actors are always looking to infiltrate your organization in the hopes of stealing data or locking up your organization to garner a large payoff. That’s why Microsoft has worked to bolster the security of its customers’ organizational infrastructure and SharePoint repositories.

Five different layers are in place to make up M365’s security infrastructure: access security, application security, data security, physical data center security, and network security. Moreover, M365 is the leader in encryption of data – protecting information when data is transferred from one data center to another. Microsoft is built for businesses and understands how to protect data.  A hacker is going to have a monumental battle even getting to your files and, because content is encrypted, they will have a hard time deciphering the information if they actually do get their hands on it.  

Check out this article from the Microsoft knowledge base for additional insight into how Microsoft works to keep you and your business secure.

While Microsoft has addressed core business security like no other, maintaining that security as people come and go within the organization and on a project can quickly become an IT nightmare. Setting up governance in SharePoint (and then maintaining it) with ProjectReady, on the other hand, has made the exercise easier for construction professionals – which leads us to the second reason we are on team SharePoint and team M365 …

2. Governance

Now that SharePoint is secured automatically, there’s the matter of governance to contend with. You have to be able to govern the way SharePoint interacts with the other platforms and systems involved on the construction project, such as Procore and the Autodesk Construction Cloud. This governance is the key to providing your team with easy access to relevant content within your own SharePoint. With ProjectReady, a roles-based approach to governance is used to automate this process, allowing the right people to have the right access at the right time.

3. Accessibility

With security and governance in place, users gain an easier way to access information across the project’s team, which drives greater collaboration. Additionally, thanks to the Microsoft cloud, information stored within your SharePoint site is easily accessible – wherever, whenever. The trick, of course, is to govern this accessibility within predetermined boundaries

Because your SharePoint information is located in the Microsoft cloud, it’s easily accessible. This is a double-edged sword because you don’t want the wrong people to get their hands on it. But ProjectReady is there to help you establish the right permissions. This way, you can ensure the right people have access to the right information at the right time.

Additionally, it’s not uncommon to have hundreds (and even thousands) of SharePoint sites in play within a single organization. Being able to efficiently find the content you need quickly has resulted in more than a few headaches over the years – particularly among construction professionals who have mammoth portfolios. ProjectReady is able to improve accessibility of information by deploying infrastructure that keeps content in the context of the project.

ProjectReady keeps your content in the context of the project. Accessing information via SharePoint for construction teams is as easy as following the chain link.

4. Collaboration

As a member of a larger construction project team, collaboration is essential. With ProjectReady’s modern provisioning and integration, you can take advantage of an Active Directory Federation Services (ADFS) group and the security of M365 to gain a tool that works seamlessly with Outlook, SharePoint, and Microsoft Teams, all of which is necessary for driving ongoing collaboration and communication between internal and external participants from ideation to handoff. And, with our sync, team members can work on content in SharePoint, which will flow through other systems like Procore and BIM 360.

5. Auditability

Those in construction are all too familiar with the concept that the final stage of a construction project’s lifecycle is often “litigation.” After all, when something goes wrong in the built world, it’s human nature to want to point the finger at those who had a hand in the design and construction of a particular element. Legal issues can be costly and, without being able to easily access past documents and directives, could result in closure of your business. But when you use ProjectReady, all your data is in your tenant and all your transactions are stored in your Azure SQL. Plus, with your content in SharePoint, you can take full advantage of the Microsoft 365 Compliance Center. We provide taxonomy and automation that enables you to easily audit and report on every transaction within a project.

6. Cost Effective

The amount of data and information that flows across a construction project can be monumental, which means you’ll need a storage solution capable of housing it all. When it comes to storing, securing, and backing up massive amounts of data and content, your existing M365 license provides you with some great, cost-effective options, which can be tailored to meet your specific needs. Additionally, it’s cheaper to store your close-out data long-term within the M365 stack as your statement of record than it is to maintain data across hundreds (or thousands) of projects in your Procore or BIM 360 instance. ProjectReady makes it easy to move content from one platform to another – helping you realize these cost savings while delivering on the various points already outlined above. By storing your content and data within M365, you ultimately gain the advantage of a strong footing within the development of your own digital twin journey moving forward.

SharePoint For Construction Yields Results

We’ve really only scratched the surface of what’s possible. SharePoint for construction, and how it relates back to the entire Microsoft 365 tech stack, is a truly powerful resource – and it’s already in your arsenal. But there’s also an opportunity to unlock Power BI and Power Automate for even more business intelligence that guaranteed to drive ROI.

As the only collaborative project information management solution on the market today that fully integrates to and utilizes M365, ProjectReady can unlock the full value of your existing M365 investment while helping you yield greater results from your other specialty software investments. If you would like to learn more about our solutions, please contact us today to schedule a free, no obligation consultation. We would be happy to share some of our expertise and to show you ProjectReady in action.

Looking for more ways Microsoft is working to help the AECO alongside ProjectReady? Check out these resources:

How To Maximize Your Microsoft 365 Construction Management Strategy

5 Ways The Cloud Can Help Reduce Construction Disputes And Litigation

The Evolution Of AECO Project Communication & Information Management

Or check out a ProjectReady Demonstration by filling out the form below!

Additional Resources