Best Practices When Creating Daily Reports

by Raken

This article was originally published to the Raken blog on February 18, 2016.

Courtesy of Raken

Courtesy of Raken

When individuals decide to embark on a career in the construction agency, it’s highly unlikely than they’re doing so that they can write daily reports. Like routine paperwork of any kind, these reports can be tedious and time consuming. But there’s no denying the importance of them, either. These reports provide information that can save firms and their investors time and money, potentially protect workers from injury, and help avoid supply problems. Careful reporting can also help construction firms with litigation issues, both as plaintiffs and as defendants. Now if they were only more fun to write…

Given the nature of what goes into these reports, it’s unlikely that anyone will ever beg to do them, or take them on vacation to read on a beach towel, either. But the good news is that construction reports are now much easier to complete, file, and access than in past years. Larger report files can be stored now as well, for longer periods of time without concerns about finding storage room and risking damage. And construction reports can now be passed along or collaborated on without resorting to mailing or having to have physical meetings.

It’s not magic that’s transforming daily reports, but construction software. Just a few decades ago, this software was clunky technology that was downloaded sloooowly via a CD, and often held computers hostage for hours. Today’s construction software however, is nimble and Internet based, meaning that it can be accessed from a number of locations, including field sites where an office may not be practical.

But this doesn’t mean that the sky’s the limit when filling out these newly digitalized reports. These daily reports serve as a legal record of events and transactions on a project, and should be filled out using consistent standards. As Dragnet character Sgt. Joe Friday would say, these reports should contain “just the facts”. And like Sgt. Friday himself, the report content should be neutral and no-nonsense. They should, using both text and visual images, recount what happened that day on the project site, both in positive and negative terms. If a supervisor is having problems off-site pertaining to the project such as with suppliers or regulatory offices, this should be recorded within the report as well, again stating only the known facts. And daily reporting should be completed on well, a daily basis. These means that recorded times and dates are an important part of the report completion process.

Fortunately, software like Raken for daily reporting not only is both quick (users report a reduction in completion time of 60-90 minutes) and convenient (Raken’s app can be used by any mobile device powered by Android or iOS), format templates are provided to users to produce proper legal documents. With Raken, users can create separate files for each individual project online, and within each file, create separate tabs for daily logs, photos, surveys, notes, and tasks to be completed. The tabs can be updated and modified. And completed files can be stored for up to ten years on Raken’s cloud platform.

Paper and pens still should be a part of a site superintendent’s daily tool kit, but with software like Raken, reports can be customized and produced not only more quickly, but ones that result in safer and more efficient job sites.