Internet installation and configuration on a construction site can be a daunting task. Running ethernet cable through a jobsite is difficult and prone to failure. Many wireless connectivity options that bring data to teams outside of the jobsite trailer can be difficult to set up, costly, and the field team is often unable to deploy them on their own. Most require significant support from the corporate IT department, sidetracking them from larger projects and causing delays when waiting for a fix. The hardware designs of these systems are often not optimized for the construction environment, causing frequent issues that can consume an IT department and hinder productivity on the jobsite.
When PCL Construction faced internet connectivity challenges on their 12-story InterContinental Hotel jobsite at the Minneapolis/St. Paul Airport, they worked with DEWALT to implement the DEWALT Jobsite WiFi system. The PCL team needed a WiFi system that worked with their existing corporate IT firewalls, could adapt to and cover the entire jobsite, and the system had to be installed in the field with minimal technical assistance from the corporate IT department.
- 26 Access Points Used
- 230,000 Square Feet
- 291 Hotel Rooms & Convention Center
The WiFi system implemented at PCL’s InterContinental Hotel jobsite included 26 DEWALT Jobsite WiFi Access Points that covered the trailer and all 12 stories of the hotel and convention center.
“Our WiFi requirement for our construction sites is that it’s easy and it works. Under that would fall it being tough enough to work on the jobsite, tough enough to work in any weather condition, and easy to set up. We haven’t run into a condition where it doesn’t work.” —Tom Roszak, Virtual Construction Manager
The entire process to configure and install the system took less than one day, with the full set up being performed by field staff and the DEWALT team using the DEWALT WiFi mobile app. As construction continued, the field team was able to quickly deploy additional access points with a few clicks of the app. In total, it took approximately 20 minutes per unit for the team to install, connect to power, and configure each unit, with no technical assistance needed from the corporate IT team.
“The impact in our IT department has been phenomenal. [The DEWALT Jobsite WiFisystem] has allowed me to be involved, but more hands-off because the implementation is so easy. That’s great because I can’t always be at every jobsite all the time. [The field staff] gets the system in, they configure it themselves, they hang it and they know what their results will be.” —Shane Swenson, IT Manager
Within the first two months of installing the system, the PCL team and their subcontractors connected more than 60 individual phones, tablets, and computers that used almost 50GB of data. The same amount of data on mobile devices could have cost thousands of dollars with cellular data plans and wasted hours of time waiting on files to download and upload at much slower rate
“The easier it is for us to install the Access Points and use them, and then have access to the mesh network, the better. We’re given the equipment and we plug and play. Being able to come to a construction project this size, with the scope we have, and maintain the mesh network throughout the project is great.” —Bryton Schroeder, Assistant Superintendent