Accelerating digital maturity for SMEs

Nick Erasmus, Technical Director, Real Data Systems, has a vision for creating an ecosystem where SMEs can access the digital workflows they require for competitive edge.

Offering a solution that is geared towards helping SMEs become more competitive is something that Nick Erasmus, Technical Director, Real Data Systems, sees crystallising in the near future. “A completely free-to-use fully-fledged construction management solution,” is his vision. Many SMEs have been excluded from tender processes if they haven’t reached the required level of what Erasmus calls “digital maturity” and this is ripe for transformation. “For the smaller guys to be competitive they need to have access to the right digital workflows and processes. We want to have that neutrality that says we’re not excluding them; they can make use of a mutual free platform, that’s open to everything and they can develop inside of it.”

Erasmus questions the usefulness of smaller companies spending money on platforms which are only replicating work already being done in hard copy, without adding any extra layers of value. “An RFI process to capture a site requirement, which typically was done on a piece of paper and sent by email — now you have to pay for an application to do that. But no-one is being intuitive. It’s not redesigning the wheel, but you will pay a premium price for it.

“I’d rather spend the money on something like Bluebeam Revu, which really saves you time and really puts value in it, rather than having a platform that’s doing essentially what you’re doing on paper already.”

Platinum Partner

Real Data systems is the direct Platinum Partner for Bluebeam in Ireland and the UK, and the number one partner for Bluebeam Revu in over 15 countries worldwide. The partnership grew when Bluebeam realised that there were a lack of proper support and implementation knowledge for their product from channel vendors “They took on RDS as partners around 2016, after we had been successful rolling out digitalisation through the African and Middle East market, and the relationship has continued to grow since then, to the point where we are now the most reputable Bluebeam Partner for Africa, the Middle East and Europe.”

The core services offered by Real Data Systems include: VDC/BIM Workflow Implementation; Block chain smart contract development; Programmable smart contracts for the AEC industry; Customised app and software development.

Erasmus explains, “With Bluebeam, we offer customers local support and understanding of what digital solutions are out there and Bluebeam Revu specifically can offer the clients in terms of workflows that they need to achieve.”

Bluebeam Revu

The Bluebeam Revu software application allows users to markup, takeoff, organise, and collaborate with PDF files, allowing for increased efficiency and collaboration, connecting project partners in real time. The bespoke construction solution keeps teams on the same page through the design process, helps move the project forward during construction, and preserves important project data through completion and beyond.

Enabling a common data environment, Bluebeam can be used across design review, quantity takeoff, project setup, drawing management, submittal review, RFI management, site logistics, snagging process all the way through to project handover.

Erasmus says everything about the user experience is adding value, even when learning how to use the software in their custom construction management platform: “Strategic mentorship takes you through the steps to set up project as you go through it, rather than sitting statically watching training videos.” Erasmus elaborates: “An intuitive UI interface will guide you through setting up your project and you can activate it or deactivate it, so the next time you start a project, the option will be there to have that little helper.”

Real Data Systems are already offering a value-packed software, allowing construction industry professionals to simplify tasks and collaborate digitally to finish projects faster. With the future plans yet to be revealed, Erasmus concludes, “Moving forward, the key takeaways are customisation, neutrality of data storage and cost effectiveness. That’s where we are stirring things up.”

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