Cloud services are developing rapidly in the US
The implementation of cloud services has grown exponentially since last year, with a number of acquisitions, mergers and rise of sustainable, word class data centers, which will enable increased security within multinational corporations.
It has recently been announced that Equinix has now decided to collaborate with Alibaba Cloud (part of Alibaba Group) in an effort to provide scalability to Alibaba Cloud’s services through Equinix Cloud Exchange in the company's Hong Kong, US and Australian based data centers. Europe will also be included further down the line.
By providing customers with secure and direct access to Alibaba Cloud, Equinix will provide connectivity to the full suite of Alibaba cloud services. Yeming Wang, Deputy General Manager of Alibaba Cloud Global said, "The global reach of Equinix Cloud Exchange makes it simple for Alibaba Cloud to access new markets. We are pleased to provide greater value and bring our services closer to enterprises by leveraging Equinix's powerful, on-demand cloud connectivity.”
IBM has also seen developments, incorporating a new service which will be incorporated within IBM Cloud. Enabling improved employee productivity by providing users to gain access to their preferred business applications and cloud apps through launching IBM Cloud Identity Connect as a new Identity-as-a-Service (IDaaS).
The development links with the rise of remote working, enabling workers to gain access to cloud platforms, anytime, anywhere through a multitude of devices.
Furthermore, Microsoft is continually ahead of the curve, leading to the company recently joining Cloud Foundry, alongside CISCO, IBM, Google and Intel, amongst others. The non-profit Platform as a Service (PaaS) technology focused organisation is one which is favoured by multinational corporations, and according to their website, “the highest quality cloud-native applications and software, at high velocity with global scale.”
Intelliwave SiteSense boosts APTIM material tracking
“We’ve been engaged with the APTIM team since early 2019 providing SiteSense, our mobile construction SaaS solution, for their maintenance and construction projects, allowing them to track materials and equipment, and manage inventory.
We have been working with the APTIM team to standardize material tracking processes and procedures, ultimately with the goal of reducing the amount of time spent looking for materials. Industry studies show that better management of materials can lead to a 16% increase in craft labour productivity.
Everyone knows construction is one of the oldest industries but it’s one of the least tech driven comparatively. About 95% of Engineering and Construction data captured goes unused, 13% of working hours are spent looking for data and around 30% of companies have applications that don’t integrate.
With APTIM, we’re looking at early risk detection, through predictive analysis and forecasting of material constraints, integrating with the ecosystem of software platforms and reporting on real-time data with a ‘field-first’ focus – through initiatives like the Digital Foreman. The APTIM team has seen great wins in the field, utilising bar-code technology, to check in thousands of material items quickly compared to manual methods.
There are three key areas when it comes to successful Materials Management in the software sector – culture, technology, and vendor engagement.
Given the state of world affairs, access to data needs to be off site via the cloud to support remote working conditions, providing a ‘single source of truth’ accessed by many parties; the tech sector is always growing, so companies need faster and more reliable access to this cloud data; digital supply chain initiatives engage vendors a lot earlier in the process to drive collaboration and to engage with their clients, which gives more assurance as there is more emphasis on automating data capture.
It’s been a challenging period with the pandemic, particularly for the supply chain. Look what happened in the Suez Canal – things can suddenly impact material costs and availability, and you really have to be more efficient to survive and succeed. Virtual system access can solve some issues and you need to look at data access in a wider net.
Solving problems comes down to better visibility, and proactively solving issues with vendors and enabling construction teams to execute their work. The biggest cause of delays is not being able to provide teams with what they need.
On average 2% of materials are lost or re-ordered, which only factors in the material cost, what is not captured is the duplicated effort of procurement, vendor and shipping costs, all of which have an environmental impact.
As things start to stabilise, APTIM continues to utilize SiteSense to boost efficiencies and solve productivity issues proactively. Integrating with 3D/4D modelling is just the precipice of what we can do. Access to data can help you firm up bids to win work, to make better cost estimates, and AI and ML are the next phase, providing an eco-system of tools.
A key focus for Intelliwave and APTIM is to increase the availability of data, whether it’s creating a data warehouse for visualisations or increasing integrations to provide additional value. We want to move to a more of an enterprise usage phase – up to now it’s been project based – so more people can access data in real time.