In construction, going green can mean many things, from using earth-friendly building materials to adopting technology that can replace cumbersome, paper-based processes. Many contractors accomplish more efficient workflow by relying on software solutions to solve their “paper problem.”

For Action Electrical & Mechanical Contractors, www.actioncontractors.com, Smyrna, Ga., going green meant adopting an integrated document-management solution. The specialty contractor hopes the implementation will reduce costs and resource waste, and help it stay competitive in today’s economy.

Prior to the implementation, the company says it was bombarded with paperwork. Like most contractors, Action needed to keep track of hundreds of thousands of important documents such as invoices, work orders, and other job files.

Since the amount of paper required to run a construction business was not about to change, nor was the negative environmental impact created by the status quo, Action decided it needed to replace legacy systems and paper processes with a new solution.

The company turned to Digio by Jonas Software, www.jonas-construction.com, Richmond Hill, Ont., a solution for storing, organizing, managing, and sharing documents electronically. The solution allowed Action to replace overstocked paper archives with digital archives for completed work orders. By streamlining the collection process and eliminating the need to retrieve paper records from multiple departments, the company has seen positive results.

Electronic document management can also improve interdepartmental workflow, saving time and energy, and reducing the opportunity for human errors. William Redding, COO, Action Electrical & Mechanical Contractors, says the solution has also improved customer service.

“When a customer calls with a document request,” says Redding, “we don’t have to say, ‘Let me get back to you.’ Instead, we can pull the document up in seconds and email it to them while they’re still on the phone.”

Construction companies that turn to technology solutions to not only improve customer service, but increase the bottomline and reduce its carbon footprint are making an investment in their future success. The paper problem in construction is not going away, but a range of technology solutions can help do the job.