May 19, 2020

SaaS: maintaining business continuity during COVID-19

SaaS
coronavirus
covid-19
Daryl Orts, VP Engineering, Du...
3 min
SaaS: maintaining business continuity during COVID-19
The coronavirus COVID-19 (coronavirus) is impacting businesses around the world...

The coronavirus COVID-19 (coronavirus) is impacting businesses around the world. 

Like most organisations, Duco is implementing parts of our own business continuity plan (BCP). We provide a critical service to global systemically important financial institutions, so we take this very seriously and have stringent measures in place. 

Even prior to the pandemic, any of our staff could work from home with full access to all the tools and resources they needed. Duco employees can be fully effective from any remote location, so moving the whole company to working from home was a relatively easy change for us. 

The secret? As far as possible we use Software as a Service (SaaS) tools to carry out our daily work. These are hosted services, rather than on-premise deployments, that we can access easily via a browser from any location. They include the Google suite for email and document management, BambooHR for administration, Zendesk for customer success, Salesforce for CRM, HubSpot for marketing, NetSuite for accounting, Jira for development, etc.

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Most people understand the commonly cited advantages of SaaS:

  • No hardware to purchase

  • No software to install

  • No networks to configure

  • Nothing to maintain

  • Regular releases with updated features

This results in lower upfront costs, reduced time to benefit, easier availability of upgrades and patches, greater flexibility, and greater scalability.  

But it’s easy to overlook another benefit: reduced administrative overhead. During challenging periods, the last thing you want to be doing as an organisation is struggling with monitoring and maintaining multiple on-premise systems.  These tasks can be a real headache when the workforce is remote and fighting fires across the organisation.  

For SaaS companies, ensuring their service continues to operate for clients is the key priority.  For example, here at Duco, we recognise and acknowledge the important role we play in our own customers’ BCP plans. Due to the measures we have taken, we can ensure our services are securely available from wherever our customers’ users are located – so they can focus resources on other critical issues in running their businesses. 

Our customers can, therefore, have confidence that we will keep their critical services running, just as we have confidence in the SaaS providers we rely on.  It’s a good situation to be in and simplifies risk management during difficult periods. At Duco, we have always strongly believed that SaaS is the future. With BCPs in sharp focus, moving to SaaS is fast becoming a necessity.  

For more information go to www.du.co

For more information on business topics in Canada, please take a look at the latest edition of Business Chief North America

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Jun 18, 2021

Intelliwave SiteSense boosts APTIM material tracking

APTIM
Intelliwave
3 min
Intelliwave Technologies outlines how it provides data and visibility benefits for APTIM

“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.

 

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