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 Case Study: Online Construction Document Manager
Case Study: Online Construction Document Manager

In a Nutshell:
Construction Manager is an online project management system that allows construction companies to manage and distribute documents associated with construction projects, online.

Business Problem:

Large quantities of project documentation

Construction projects generate enormous amounts of documentation. Managing this volume of project documentation is labour intensive and time consuming.

Many project participants
Construction projects involve many participants most of whom do not work for the Head Contractor. Most of these participants are third party sub-contractors. This further complicates the distribution of documentation.

Documents are constantly changing
Project documents are being constantly updated. All project participants need to be sent project documentation changes. This is difficult to manage and can often result in a sub-contractor working from the wrong documents.

Collecting, compiling and distributing project documents is time consuming
Most construction companies have dedicated staff that is responsible for collecting, compiling, and distributing project documents. This process is time consuming and inefficient. Documents are generally distributed by mail and on CD-ROM.

No access to previous document versions
Project participants need to be able to refer back to previous versions of specific documentation. As the participant often does not have direct access to the document repository, this is difficult.

Multiple document formats
Project documents are received and distributed in various ways and in multiple formats including drawings, specifications, spreadsheets, documents, faxes, emails, scanned documents, and images. Because of these multiple formats, companies tend to print out all project documentation. The repository of project documents is generally in one place, and is only accessible directly by the construction company.

Documents are often time sensitive and receipt needs to be acknowledged
Some documents have to be received and acknowledged within a given time-frame, to meet legal obligations, and before work can begin. Managing this process is complicated by the distribution restrictions the Head Contractor faces.

Online Construction Document Manager

Application Components

Desktop client
IMAP email service

Software Required
Server: MS SQL 2003, Windows 2000/2003/2005
Client: Browser (v. 4 and above)

Online Construction Document Manager: Overview

Stores Project Documents Online

All project documents are accessible to all participants online. The user only requires a browser and an internet connection.

Integrated email, FTP, and fax facilities
Documents can be distributed and received by email, fax, or via FTP. These facilities are integrated directly into the Construction Document Manager interface.

Broadcast Emails
Administrators can use the system email broadcasting facility to communicate with project participants as required.

Administrators can set reminders to:
Remind participants to return documentation by specified dates.
Remind the administrator to distribute documents by specified dates.

The system allows the user to post questions and comments to a specific document

Supports multiple document formats
The Online Construction Document Manager supports multiple document formats including drawings, specifications, spreadsheets, documents, faxes, emails, scanned documents, and images.

Version control
As documents are updated, the administrator can elect to automatically notify project participants via email.
Users can refer back to, and view previous versions of documents.

Podcast and video support
The Online Construction Document Manager supports podcasting and video distribution.

Documents can be viewed online
Most project documents can be viewed directly online and do not require to be downloaded. The Construction Document Manager includes various viewer plug-ins to accommodate various document formats.

Bulk Downloading
Documents can be bulk downloaded. The user can select the documents they want to download. These are automatically zipped and downloaded to userís system.

The Construction Document Manager requires that users login to access the system.
Administrators can manage the security profiles of the various system users:
A user can be restricted to specific projects and specific document types.
The administrator can also control what a user can do on the system; for example, they could prevent a user from uploading documents, distributing documents, or sending bulk emails.

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About Four Corners Interactive
Founded in 1997 Four Corners Interactive provides advanced IT solutions and services to businesses and institutions. The company has proven success and expertise in multiple business domains including finance, travel, healthcare, retail, and manufacturing. The company provides a range of services from application development, data warehousing, managed application delivery, middleware, web application development, to wireless application development.

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