As work environments for professionals in the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industry become more collaborative, the need to share, view and print large format documents in the field is growing. An increasingly mobile workforce must be armed with the ability to access, share and print engineering and design documents using a broad range of mobile devices.
Canon Solutions America, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Canon U.S.A, explains how AEC professionals can leverage advanced large format print systems, mobile printing capabilities and the cloud to adapt to the changing work environment.
A Collaborative Approach: Leverage the Cloud
Cloud computing is an ideal approach for the highly collaborative and project-based AEC industry, which often requires multiple temporary relationships with outside organizations. High volumes of documents including line work, spreadsheets and PDFs can be stored online or “in the cloud”, where they can be easily downloaded, edited and uploaded. Temporary project teams can leverage the cloud to share information over the duration of the project and over multiple project phases.
Data can be easily shared in this collaborative work environment through two methods: scan to FTP or desktop publish to the cloud via an online storage service. The scan via FTP method enables a more flexible onramp to the cloud; documents can be shared and accessed across multiple stakeholders and users are not locked into a single storage service provider. Once documents are stored in the cloud, they can be accessed by project team members using a variety of mobile devices for collaborative viewing and printing purposes.
A New Workflow: Mobile and Flexible
Using the Wi-Fi configuration on their mobile device, project members can retrieve large format construction or design documents from the cloud and send a print requested to a supported large format printing device. Combining advanced large format print systems with mobile print capabilities gives AEC professionals the flexibility to print high-quality construction documents in the field, without disrupting their workflow.
Employees no longer have to worry that they have all the documents they may need stored on a jump drive or printed as hard copies before they go into the field. They can trust that all the critical documents they need are stored securely in the cloud and can be accessed and sent to any large format printing system within their existing network environment enabled with the mobile printing software. Mobile access and printing of documents can also lead to reduced downtime and costs as employees need not put a job on hold while they leave the site to retrieve critical designs or data.
Fast, easy access to construction documents in the field can help AEC companies further leverage the use of color, improve communication, reduce mistakes and speed up project completion. For more information on how your AEC firm can create a collaborative, mobile workflow download the Canon Solutions America whitepaper “Large Format Mobile Printing Apps” or visit www.csa.canon.com/mobileprinting.