The future of the construction industry and strategies for contractors
The construction industry is undergoing a period of rapid change in response to increased sustainability and environmental awareness, changing safety and risk management requirements on contractors, and the advent of new technologies and ways of working. In this article, we address the question ‘What is the future of the construction industry?’ while looking at several key trends transforming the industry.
Embracing technology and digitalisation
Innovation and technology has the potential to revolutionise every aspect of the construction industry, from design to project execution – especially in the realms of communication and software technology. Overall, these positive changes can allow smaller contractors, in particular, to undertake more ambitious projects and achieve higher profit margins using fewer resources. Contractors should not be afraid of embracing new technologies such as construction management software, Building Information Modelling (BIM), and Virtual Design and Construction (VDC) for comprehensive project visualisation, coordination, and clash detection. Real-time information sharing and collaboration on a single platform – such as Milestone from Cube – can improve coordination and communication across the construction project team; contractors, architects, engineers, and the on-site teams, saving time and money, and boosting productivity.
Sustainable and green construction practices
Sustainable construction practices are increasingly a central component of all construction projects, influencing project planning and resource allocation. Contractors can integrate sustainable practices in many different ways, e.g., by utilising recycled and renewable materials, implementing energy-efficient on-site systems (solar power generators etc), and using green temporary buildings on site that reduce the impact of construction projects on the local environment. ‘Green buildings’ can lower energy consumption, and reduce waste and carbon emissions, while contributing to a healthier and more sustainable environment.
Safety and risk management
Construction has always been a high-risk industry, with a higher risk of injury to persons and damage to property than most other sectors, so safety is paramount in every project. Over the past decade, the requirement of contractors to demonstrate effective risk management and mitigation, and compliance with health and safety best practices and guidelines, has become more intricate. Most contractors and industry stakeholders aim for a zero-harm strategy in their construction projects, proactively identifying and managing risks through thorough risk assessments, contingency planning, and regular monitoring. Investing in advanced safety technologies, such as wearables, drones, and real-time monitoring systems can enhance site safety and productivity, while simultaneously reducing the time and expense of compliance and safety.
Data analytics and predictive insights
Data analysis and predictive insights have the potential to improve construction project decision-making and enhance overall business performance. To take advantage of this, contractors can leverage data collection and analysis tools at every opportunity to gain a better understanding of project performance, productivity, and cost control. Real-time data analytics can help contractors quickly identify and resolve potential blockages, predict resource/supply issues before they occur, and improve labour allocation to avoid understaffing or overstaffing.
At Cube, we offer a variety of construction consultancy services to help contractors derive the maximum value from new and emerging technologies and practices. To find out more or request a quote, please get in touch today.
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