The construction industry is one of the largest industries on earth, typically contributing 6–8% of national GDP and employing 6–10% of a country’s workforce.

But the industry has not realised the potential that the digital revolution promises and has brought to other industries. In fact, productivity is lower today than it was before 99% of us signed up for our first email address.

Structural characteristics of the industry contribute to this. In large part, the industry supply chain is hugely fragmented and project-based, making it difficult for firms to retain experience and knowledge, and improve operational performance incrementally, over time.

What remains true is that all construction projects need a medium for sharing information effectively and facilitating collaborative working within the complex network of individuals and organisations involved.

Likewise, each organisation needs a system so they can oversee and manage all their projects in a simple, integrated manner. But currently, no single platform exists that can satisfy this need — and that’s why we built Keepsite.

Keepsite is a networked, ‘common data environment’ and collaboration platform for organisations that create the built environment. It is available via the web and ‘offline first’ mobile applications for Android and iPhone. It is a SaaS product that builds on the project focused functionality the industry is used to, to bring radical productivity benefits to the sector by networking information exchange, removing complexity, and integrating an organisation’s project data from across its portfolio.

By way of example, Keepsite is enabling UNOPS from their head office in Copenhagen to confidently oversee projects in emerging markets across Africa. UNOPS use Keepsite to manage risk and report on issues and progress from remote project sites, placing information into the hands of people who need it, as they need it.

Keepsite has brought a new level of efficiency and predictability to their varied and complex operations by breaking with the traditional focus on managing projects, to managing their operations as an integrated portfolio. Similar complexity exists in every construction market and we are developing a core platform and set of digital tools to enhance the construction process and ultimately improve productivity across the sector.

Digital technologies can transform the construction industry. Not just in terms of the application of the Internet of Things, monitoring technologies, design, and energy modelling, but in how construction firms manage their project operations, and how the construction supply chain works together as an integrated whole. We’ve set out to try and make a dent in this organisational challenge.

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