Cat All Day 3 MYTHS ABOUT BIG DATA IN THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY - Cat All Day
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3 MYTHS ABOUT BIG DATA IN THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY

Still not convinced Big Data is transforming the construction industry? You are not alone. Between the technical specs, the industry jargon and the acronyms, things get hard to understand. And that can lead to frustration, anxiety, even indifference. Before you let data madness get the best of you, take a minute to unpack a few simple myths about the subject.

Explaining the Myths of Data

3 MYTHS ABOUT BIG DATA IN THE CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY

Still not convinced Big Data is transforming the construction industry? You are not alone. Between the technical specs, the industry jargon and the acronyms, things get hard to understand. And that can lead to frustration, anxiety, even indifference. Before you let data madness get the best of you, take a minute to unpack a few simple myths about the subject.

MYTH: This focus on data capture is a new idea.
Fact: You’ve been doing it for a long time.

Nobody had to sell the first heavy equipment owners on the importance of paying close attention to their machines. They kept their eyes and ears open, doing walkaround inspections, listening for unusual noises, checking oil, cutting into filters, measuring components. Over time, companies like Caterpillar applied emerging technologies to the data-gathering challenge. Oil analysis, wear-metals monitoring and particulate analysis gave equipment owners fresh insight into conditions they couldn’t see or hear. More recently we’ve applied electronics—sensors, control systems, wireless technologies and more. Providing you with even more insight that is faster and easier and with a higher degree of precision. The point is…for generations equipment owners and suppliers have worked together to capture data for decision-making. Today’s focus on Big Data is just one more step along that path.

MYTH: Bigger data is better.
Fact: Making data actionable adds more value.

At Caterpillar, we’ve spent a lot of time figuring out how to get the most out of ‘big things’—including Big Data. We have spent decades accumulating large volumes of it. How large? Well, in a typical year, we process information from more than:
• 5 million fluid samples
• 700,000 electronic inspections, and
• 5 billion Cat® Product Link™ records
That’s just one year—and only one portion of our data. But we also recognize that large datasets don’t have value in and of themselves. Careful analysis turns datasets into actionable information that can be used for decision-making. Your Cat dealer has been reviewing equipment data for decades and has specialists in place who can help you use information to make more profitable decisions. Whether you’re looking at a small data set, such as hours and location, or capturing productivity metrics from your fleet, look for changes you can make that will improve your results.

MYTH: It’s all about the technology.
Fact: Expertise is the true differentiator.

Construction machines are getting smarter every day; not just the big stuff. Even the smallest skid steer loader in the Cat line is now equipped with onboard computers capable of processing more than 70,000 lines of computer code. There’s no shortage of intelligent iron out there these days. But there is a shortage of people who know what to do with it to help you get the most from that iron. People who not only know heavy equipment and the applications in which it is used, but also know data—how to organize it, analyze it, visualize it, simplify it, interpret it, put it into perspective and, ultimately, use it to recommend a course of action. When it comes to making an equipment investment decision, technology matters, but it’s expertise that delivers the real cost savings, efficiency gains and margin improvements.

You’ve got this
All the buzz about Big Data in construction may be a bit overwhelming. But it’s not likely to go away soon. So your best bet is to relax, keep an open mind and align yourself with a partner who knows the business. See your Cat dealer about on-site assistance or find out how Cat Connect Support can help you turn data into actionable information that delivers bottom-line results.