Content is king. Although without the proper tools to distribute and manage that content, the data could become lost in the depths of a filing cabinet or email inbox. Putting the right information into the right hands at the right time is paramount to success in construction today.

Tools such as email and FTP sites can sometimes prove to be challenging for the construction industry, particularly on projects where information needs to be shared with many different team members. These days systems for Web-based collaboration are playing a greater role on construction projects.

Large projects, in particular, are more commonly using Web-based collaboration systems to exchange information between the different construction players on the project. A recent example is the Entertainment City Manila Project inside PagCor City, a multibillion-dollar government project that covers prime reclaimed land. The participants on this project are using construction technology from Aconex, www.aconex.com, San Bruno, Calif.

The key for this project is team members can access information in realtime and track every transaction in order to reduce disputes and delays.

Today, a big movement in the industry is toward sharing information between the multitude of participants—owners, architects, engineers, and contractors—on a project. As the need for information becomes greater among disparate team members, construction technology providers create new solutions that bring the necessary information to the appropriate project stakeholders.

One example comes from Newforma, www.newforma.com, Manchester, N.H., which announced last week a new portfolio of software tailored to the needs of architecture, engineering, construction, and owners. For owners, the technology allows for project monitoring and portfolio discovery. Contractors can use the construction suite for preconstruction, project management, and field management.

Collaboration and mobility: These concepts are reinventing the way in which a construction project is managed today. Projects are no longer managed in silos of information, but instead are more commonly integrated to connect the entire business from beginning to end, from one team member to another—and even out in the field.

Mobility is a big word in the construction industry these days, as accessing data in the field is a significant need. Jay Haladay, CEO, Viewpoint Construction Software, www.viewpointcs.com, Portland, Ore., recently told Constructech the way in which ERP (enterprise resource planning) systems interact with mobile devices will impact how far data can be leveraged in the construction industry.

This goes back to the big industry trend today: Putting the right information into the hands of the right project participants at the right time. Content-management systems have a lot to add to this equation. Technology from Construction Imaging, www.construction-imaging.com, Rocky Mount, N.C., extends data to the key members of a construction organization—putting the information into the hands of those individuals that need it.

Want to learn more about how technology can help distribute and manage data?  Check out the recent Jan/Feb cover story of Constructech magazine to read more about how to dig up your data, or check out the Constructech Tech Index to find other collaboration or project-management solutions designed specifically for the construction industry.