Some builders just seem to have it when it comes to leveraging technology. You can count Clark Builders Group,www.clarkbuildersgroup.com, Arlington, Va., in that category as a builder of multifamily apartments, campus housing, military family housing, hotels, and senior living facilities continues to wow the homebuilding market for its innovative use of applying modern technologies to the business.
This past Friday in San Mateo, Calif., Clark Builders Group was honored with a Constructech Vision Award. It is the 11th time in which the builder has received such recognition, being honored throughout the years for applying technology from everything from the office to the field. This year the honor came as a result of its unique use of HD video to help connect employees across the country, while staying green and lowering costs in the process.
While Clark Builders Group is a relatively small business, it relies on the expertise of many critical staffers who are spread out on jobsites across the country. Still, these employees must attend meetings remotely or share knowledge among executives companywide on existing construction projects, or new deals with tight operating budgets. Video conferencing had long been in place at the company, but its older system operated at a lower resolution and bandwidth and did not allow for fluid motion or HD video. More importantly, as the company demands grew it discovered its older system could not handle the network infrastructure.
The company has found the benefits to using such a system to be many. For example, employees communicating via video conferencing can share knowledge at a faster and more efficient rate, which results in faster and more informed decisions that reduce the time to market for projects. Videoconferencing also allows executives across the country to collaborate, and has served as a key recruiting tool by eliminating the need for job candidates to travel for interviews.
Turning to one of the more advanced systems on the market, Clark now finds itself working with technology that is fully configurable and robust enough to handle the growing infrastructure demands of the company. Capable of capturing and decoding up to 1080p resolution (1920 x 1080), the cameras now allow for a more lifelike interaction through the television to users at different sites. Integrated with a primary system in place at the company that controls all of the endpoints, the system is used administratively to book conferences, manage endpoint settings, and anything else related to the system points themselves.
The technology has proven highly beneficial to Clark Builders Group on a daily basis. One example is the fact contract executives are now able to view architectural drawings during a video call and make any edits to the drawings. They are also able to meet with subcontractors and other staff members if the project is delayed due to change orders. Using content sharing via video, employees can share architectural drawings, change orders, budget spreadsheets, as well as scheduling software. The process in which data is shared via the video call involves plugging a laptop into the video adapter of the videoconference system.
This is merely a sample of the ways in which Clark Builders Group is taking its business to the next level using video conferencing. Overall it says the technology helps reduce expense through a 50% decrease in travel costs as well as makes the organization more environmentally friendly. It just goes to show that no matter what part of the organization is embracing technology at Clark Builders Group, the company finds a way to make a statement in the industry.