Predictive Intelligence is Changing How You Work

By Brian Frederick
September 28, 2017

Predictive intelligence in construction

It’s no secret that so-called “intelligent machines” are the future. We’ve been talking for years about self-driving vehicles and the impact telematics is having on the construction industry is evident to anyone in the industry.

But what you may not have heard so much about is predictive intelligence. It’s a hot buzzword right now, but many people don’t understand what it means. So let’s take a closer look.

What is predictive intelligence?

Predictive intelligence, also known as predictive analytics, is using existing data and information to make predictions about the future of your business. It uses a combination of data mining, statistics, modeling, machine learning and artificial intelligence to help identify risk and opportunities.

Predictive intelligence vs. business intelligence

Now that we’ve identified just what predictive intelligence is, what makes it different from business intelligence? This is confusing for some people, and many assume they’re the same thing. Don’t fall into that trap.

The easiest way to differentiate between them is to think about it like this: predictive intelligence is forward looking, providing insights into the future. Business intelligence is understanding what happened in the past and how that shaped your present. So in short, predictive intelligence is about tomorrow, business intelligence is about today. Both of them use data from yesterday to help you understand where you are, and where you’re going.

What predictive intelligence means for construction

Now that we’ve identified just what predictive intelligence means, let’s take a look at what it means for you as a contractor.

Advanced analytics are redefining relationships between project stakeholders.

By helping you predict information on things like financial and time costs, regulatory requirements, and even weather conditions, stakeholders like architects, engineers, owners and contractors can work together with fewer issues. With a clear understanding of how a project is expected to proceed, unexpected issues are minimized, reducing stress and increasing collaboration.

Maintenance is far more efficient.

Anyone who performs maintenance on heavy machinery knows that all usage is not the same. For example, an aerial lift run indoors, in a dust-free, climate-controlled environment can go a lot longer between scheduled maintenance than one operating on a hot, dusty jobsite.

Predictive analytics solves this problem, by analyzing the machine itself to track wear and tear on parts and consumables. Then, using a platform like ES Track, you can set automatic alerts when it’s time to change a belt or filter, or perform other tasks.

Costs are more controllable.

One of the biggest challenges contractors face is controlling costs, especially in the form of raw materials. Predictive intelligence can help you more accurately predict the cost of new builds and renovations, even months into the future. Predictive analytics accounts for real market conditions and impacts on material commodities.

The future will bring more intelligence and more accuracy

As technology continues to improve and the interconnected relationship between machines grows even greater, predictive intelligence will become more and more accurate. And that means even greater savings for contractors. But that’s no reason to wait. You can start using analytics to run more efficiently and improve profits immediately.

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