A new study from Dodge Construction Network, published in partnership with Egnyte, shows data resiliency is key to handling top challenges architects, engineers and contractors face, such as the labor shortage, supply chain issues and a higher risk of cyberattacks.
According to Dodge Construction Network, the report, Data Resilience in Design and Construction: How Digital Discipline Builds Stronger Firms, defines data resilience as the ability to access all project and business documents and data to support work at any time, from any place and on any device. The study shows only 39% of architects, engineers and contractors currently have this level of access at least 90% of the time.
The top challenges are being unable to access all documents on mobile devices; software that limits the ability to work digitally with other project team members; and a lack of timely access to documents. Most respondents say lack of document access leads to performance issues, such as unplanned rework and schedule delays.
The data suggests cloud-based functionality can help combat these challenges; 85% of those who report no issues with document access currently use the cloud.
Additionally, the report shows the degree to which the design and construction industries underestimate their exposure to cyberattacks. Fifty-nine percent of respondents say they have experienced a cybersecurity threat during the past two years. Seventy percent of general contractors have experienced a threat, and 30% have had a ransomware attack since 2021. Seventy-two percent of architects, engineers and contractors rate themselves as having a moderate or higher degree of preparation for an attack that would result in losing access to documents. However, 77% say they cannot go more than five days without access to documents before it significantly affects their project schedules; the average duration of a successful ransomware attack is considerably longer than five days, potentially leaving many firms more vulnerable than they realize.
The study examines the most common and effective strategies to alleviate and manage risks, including using cloud-based collaboration solutions; increasing automation to reduce the time needed for tasks; and upskilling workers.