The last two years have been extremely challenging for every UK business, particularly in the construction, energy, and engineering sectors. In the first quarter of 2021, the Office for National Statistics reported the construction industry had 100,000 fewer workers than in the same period in 2020. Add the rising costs of construction material and international shipping charges, and the sector is being squeezed from all sides.
This comes at a time when building, engineering and energy firms need to be more agile and efficient than ever. Rigorous new energy efficiency standards for homes and businesses to help protect the environment mean yet more bureaucracy, paperwork, and tick boxes to check off. The government also has an ambitious target of delivering 300,000 homes a year by the mid-2020s.
With so much pressure on fewer workers to deliver big results and a heavy reliance on outdated systems, there's a real danger of security being side-lined and productivity compromised.
Old fashioned paper-based systems on site are common, but the risk of data breaches is huge if information is lost or stolen. And making sensitive financial data or project information available to those who need it while keeping it invisible to those who don't is impossible.
Allowing employees to run industry software on their own phones is risky too. How often does your IT department check these devices? Without continual security updates, you run the risk of hacking, data leaks and security breaches. This could lead to delays, more costs and irreparable reputational damage.
Fortunately, technology is more than capable of donning a hard hat and lending a hand. And for businesses with field workers, the iPad is the perfect device.
Detailed documents like blueprints demand large screens – even on site. The latest generation iPad 10.2 screen is 25 by 17 cm wide, or 9.8 x 6.8 inches. Try placing your phone on half a sheet of A4. See the extra white space around it? That's what you'll gain using an iPad.
It's easier to protect an iPad from rain, slips and trips than its paper counterpart too. There are plenty of heavy-duty waterproof protective cases out there. Some have been tested by the US Department of Defence. You can even choose one that is fully submersible for up to 60 minutes, allowing you to take photos and videos underwater. So the next time you unexpectedly get caught in the rain on-site, you won't have to worry about your prized personal phone or your paper plans.
As with all of Apple's devices, the iPad is packed with user-friendly security measures. And it has software to match. Rather than tapping in a password, users can use Face ID to log in. As for security upgrades, they're free for the life of the device.
And if field workers download an app unapproved by the workplace, you don't need to worry. Any app from the App Store is security approved. And if they do install a third-party app from somewhere else, it won't be able to access other files on the device. Apple’s 'sandboxing' keeps all the files for that app locked within its own home directory, with no chance to wander.
Planning on sharing the iPad across your team? No problem. Access to data is gated by username, so Tom won't be able to see Sofia's budget just because they're using the same iPad. And setting up access rights to field workers is simple for the IT team, to save time.
What's more, Apple Business Manager seriously reduces time spent on support. Your IT team can use this web-based portal to remotely set up device enrolment, distribute software and more.
We know how it is. With staff dashing about between multiple sites, there's always the chance of their iPad being misplaced or stolen. Did they leave it in the Portakabin? In the contractor's truck?... Our Mobile Device Management (MDM) solution, Jamf, keeps track of your devices 24/7. It also allows your IT team to perform remote updates, sort out user access and protect your data.
You need to ensure your employees, your assets and your intellectual property are as highly protected on a mobile device as they would be on a desktop computer. TRUCE software balances privacy and access like a pro. It allows you to place devices in a protected state and still respect your employees’ app, web, messages, and photo privacy at all times. It quickly adapts app and data accessibility according to your business preferences and different circumstances, and respects employees’ privacy during their downtime by moving to the background.
Practical applications include encouraging responsible driving when in fleet vehicles. One company saved 27% in fleet insurance policy costs through using TRUCE to limit phone access for employees while driving.
And our collaborations to build on Apple's excellence don't stop there. We're the trusted partner and reseller of independent software vendors whose products can run on more than one operating system. This means you can access everything on iPad that you would on a PC, be that ESRI's GIS and location intelligence capabilities, Poka's problem-solving platform, Parsable's powerful digital tools or Procore's streamlining magic.
Want more confidence in your technology? And want to save time and money so you can invest in other areas like training and recruitment? Please get in touch. We have nearly 30 years' experience of embedding Apple into businesses, so we know what works best.
Find out more about how iPad can transform your workforce by completing the form below, emailing us at solutions@Jigsaw24.com, or calling 03332 400 888.
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