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Material Tracking Software in Industrial Construction - 7 Practical Tips

INSITE IT GmbH, Solutions for Industrial Construction Sites –
Reading time: 5 minutes

Do you already have suitable software for material tracking in use? If not, you risk unnecessary downtime, inefficient processes, data inconsistencies, and increased susceptibility to errors.

Plant construction: construction site with material for installation. Above screens of the Insite LMS material tracking software.

Implementation and Use of Material Tracking Software

Material tracking aims to enable efficient assembly.

Those who use material tracking software correctly benefit from:

  • reduced downtimes,
  • increased project efficiency, and
  • better project control.

The following tips gather experience from 6,000+ successfully implemented projects.

Tip 1: Consolidate All Information Into ONE System.

Material Tracking Software should consolidate forces. A picture shows many hands of workers stacked on top of each other.

Establish a "Single Source of Truth" that consolidates ALL relevant data on materials into ONE system. This ensures that project teams on the construction site and back-office users have the same view of materials – in a single system and ideally from manufacturing to assembly.

This reduces uncertainties, increases transparency, and promotes constructive project work. Not only that! You minimize duplicate efforts and don't need to maintain unnecessary multiple subsystems. Additionally, this allows you to access real-time information comfortably and control the material flow optimally.

Tip 2: Involve the Users.

Three workers at the construction site are talking to each other, lookin.g at a laptop.

Yes, it's important which material tracking software you choose. But even the best software can only show its strengths if the users enjoy working with it.

Therefore, when introducing the solution, conduct active change management. Involve the users who will work with the system on a daily basis early on and at eye level. Take their feedback into account.

Users appreciate solutions that:

  • Make daily work easier from the start,
  • can be used without entry barriers, and
  • are specifically tailored to their tasks.

Tip 3: Don't Wait for External or Global Standards.

Project manager sits at his desk and looks intently at his monitor.

Every country and every project has different requirements when it comes to material management. It is unlikely that overarching standards will emerge. So don't waste time waiting for norms or globally applicable standards.

Define your framework conditions for your projects. Ensure that these are adhered to in your projects. On the one hand, this means getting everyone involved "on board". On the other hand, the system must support compliance with the project standards.
A suitable material management system is characterized by

  • Simple import of data from different sources
  • uncomplicated integration of subcontractors and data sources
  • Standardization - ensuring data quality
  • Collaboration functionality
  • Flexibility - covering changing project requirements without IT effort

Did you know? Insite LMS provides a proven direct supplier process for the uncomplicated import of data from different suppliers. Import templates can be easily defined on an Excel basis. After the import, all data is available in Insite LMS in the form that meets the requirements of the respective project. And all without any IT or programming effort!

Tip 4: Secure Quick Wins and Reach Your Goal Step by Step.

Checklist with two points ticked off and three open.

Ideally, you would like to have a 100 percent solution right away. To avoid wasting valuable time before you reach 100 percent, we recommend starting promptly with the first useful application areas in the field of material tracking and gradually adding further use cases. In this way, you can quickly secure quick wins and continuously optimize material tracking.

Example: If you want to display information on material deliveries or withdrawals via a 3D model, you should also consider target/actual comparisons. Our tip: Work with ACTUAL data first and only add TARGET data in the next step.

Tip 5: Ensure Data Quality Right from the Start.

Introduce material tracking software: Data quality is central.

"You can't teach an old dog new tricks." - The data quality that does not "enter the system" at the beginning of material tracking does not "miraculously" appear afterwards! In short: any system is only as good as the people working with it. Therefore, invest sufficient energy in the topic of data quality right from the start.

  • Establish Project Standards: Clearly define standards for your material data to ensure consistency and quality.

  • Optimize Supplier Integration: Streamline the process for material registration and clarify the legal framework, including order conditions, to facilitate smoother collaboration.

  • Ensure Transparent Communication: Utilize a collaboration tool to maintain traceable communication through tasks, notifications, and logs for all stakeholders.

  • Emphasize Data Consistency: Aim for zero manual entry of packing lists to eliminate errors and inefficiencies. Automated processes should be the goal to ensure accuracy and save time.

Tip 6: Use a System That Does Not Require Any Special Additional Hardware.

Robust cell phone in the hands of a construction worker.

A "No hardware barriers!" approach makes life easier.

An example from the area of material acceptance: Do you need your own scanners when accepting deliveries on the construction site? Or can this be done without special hardware?

Material tracking solutions are ideal,

  • if they are robust, secure & offline-capable and
  • no special equipment is required.

Insite LMS can be used via an app on smartphones. No other hardware is required for the daily to-dos that occur directly on the construction site.

Tip 7: Ventilate Established Processes.

Large construction site in plant construction in sunlight and with clouds against a lightning blue sky.

Anyone introducing new material tracking software should take the opportunity to scrutinize existing processes.

  • Does the status quo still fit? Can something be improved?
  • Does it make sense to map more of the entire material management process digitally? Example: Pre-registration of materials before delivery to the construction site.
  • Which Excel lists are sent across the world today? Is this still necessary or is it easier and more efficient with a suitable system for material tracking?

Our experience is that it makes sense to digitally map material management across the entire process chain from production to final assembly in one system.

Key Facts

Smartphone with Insite LMS as material tracking software.
  1. A platform that covers material issues from production to assembly offers the most advantages as a single source of truth - first and foremost reduced downtimes and maximum project efficiency.
  2. Material tracking is not just a software issue, but also a process and cultural issue.
  3. Those who enforce high data quality right from the start will benefit from this not only until final assembly, but throughout the entire life cycle management of a system (e.g. service business).

Book A Material Tracking Software Demo

For material tracking, the established system is Insite LMS. We look forward to talking to you about the use of this system for material tracking in your projects and clarifying any questions you may have.

Book A Demo

More About Materials Tracking Software

About the Author


Since the company was founded in 2012, INSITE IT GmbH has continuously become the professional partner for plant engineers. The software company is headquartered in Linz (AT) and develops software solutions for materials, logistics and site management in plant engineering.

Contact: LinkedIn

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