If you ask a builder about “better tools” it wouldn’t be uncommon to start hearing a list of brands like DeWalt, Makita, or Milwaukee and from the builders who strive for quality & better efficiency you will hear brands like Festool, Fein, or Mafell. But what about the administrative tools needed to do the job?
Software at times can feel like most tool brands where there is no one brand that does everything so you end up with a slew of different productivity packages and you have to find a system that works for you. Sometimes finding the right balance between different software packages and systems can take years to finetune and they can still fall short because there isn’t one package that can cover everything that is needed.
Most building companies have to deal with contracts, design revisions, council communications, client changes, product substitutions, onsite changes, architect changes, H&S, and a heap more but somehow still keep all parties up to date with communications and on the same level. It’s not uncommon to see Gmail, Dropbox, DocuSign, SalesForce, Hazco, Sketchup, and a fractured system that feels taped together.
A new startup called Digs is aiming to bring an all-in-one collaborative software package to the building industry. “At the core of Digs then is a Dropbox-like file sharing tool, with Figma-like collaboration features on top and the necessary computer vision tools to read and understand blueprints and other documents,” Techcrunch explains.
If you don’t know what Figma is; it is the worlds leading collaborative interface design tool primarily used for building applications like mobile apps. Big companies like Google, Facebook, Uber, and Netflix use Figma for building their apps; so if Digs are able to bring just a portion of the functionality of what Figma offer and mix it with a good file storage solution, with version control, they are going to be onto a winner.
At the moment Digs are still building out the software but they do have some early users of their products. They have recently secured $7m USD of funding to continue the development of the software so I can’t wait to see what they bring out and how soon we will be able to see it on this side of the world.
I’m excited to see what features these guys have on their roadmap as they are both very technical founders with successful projects behind them. I hope they bring some AI & Machine Learning into the project but more importantly that they allow their software the flexibility for different countries as we all build slightly differently and have different processes.
Hopefully, they are targeting to have the entire process covered all the way from the napkin drawing at the cafe to the homeowner's user manual. So that would also include: document signoffs for client & subcontractor contacts, integration with the local council approvals, inspections, client updates, and snag lists.
So rather than having a messy tool bag of different battery platform chargers soon, you will be able to have one main brand that covers the bulk of things. If you want to give it a go and be a trendsetter I’d recommend signing up on their website.