The Construction Landscape Is Evolving
Construction technology. Two words we’ll be seeing increasingly unified as the world’s rapid transformation with technology empowers the construction industry.
The State of Construction Tech report by JLL pinpoints the 2020 pandemic as the accelerator of tech adoption – with three years of construction tech growth compressed into one. The talent you hire must have the skills and mindset to embrace the technology that is pushing the construction industry to excellence in quality, efficiency, accuracy, and safety.
Here are 7 construction technology trends you must base your hiring strategy on for business growth.
AI, IoT, and Blockchain
These three terms are no longer jargon in most industries, and the technologies are becoming engrained deeper into how a business operates. AI, IoT, and blockchain have the potential to dominate how the growth of your company is shaped.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is at the forefront of tech innovation in construction. In 2020 the IoT industry stood at approximately $244.47 billion, and is set to increase to $286.9 billion in 2021 at a 17.4% compound annual growth rate (CAGR). IoT is creating opportunities for monitoring and analyzing construction project output such as utilities, labor, and energy, to optimize site conditions and supply chains. It also supports the maintenance and avoidance of downtime in equipment, and closing of unused systems.
Artificial intelligence (AI) is used to identify unsafe behavior through image recognition. It is identifying real-time solutions that drive productivity and prioritize preventative maintenance. AI enhances the operation of project supply chains by tracking and analyzing complex data.
Blockchain is used increasingly to manage all contractual relationships through smart contracts and electronic verification. It is also being used to address scope creep, contractual changes, and avoid costly waste.
Building Information Modeling (BIM)
BIM digitally represents physical characteristics of a construction project, to enable shared decision making from early stages to close. It can create 3D models, and is evolving to create 4D scheduling, 5D cost estimating, 6D sustainability, and 7D operations maintenance.
BIM is being used to improve design efficiency, coordination, accuracy, reduced errors, and cost and time savings of typically between 4% to 6%. 73% of U.S. contractors report using BIM, according to Dodge Data & Analytics report.
Digitally Enhanced Manufacturing
Construction is being shifted off-site for speedier efficiency, with preassembled building components and modules shipped to sites for assembly. Companies embracing the method of digitally enhanced prefabricated construction are seeing higher quality, faster deliverance, economic viability, and enhanced environmental sustainability.
Digital twin is the simulation and predictive analytics that create a digital replica of a physical asset. Benefits include facilities management, self-tuning, automated progress monitoring, historical recall, AI data collection, and provision of virtual asset information through 3D databases. Predominantly, a digital twin can identify maintenance malfunctions and raise alerts.
Augmented and Virtual Reality (AR and VR)
AR and VR are being used to create computer-generated sensory input, to allow companies and clients to accurately visualize each phase of a project, from design to build, to post-construction.
Bringing a design to life before stakeholders is crucial in obtaining new business, and understanding a visual layered mapping of the project, buildings, and interiors.
Robots and Drones
While robots will be used to execute mundane, repetitive, and labor-intensive tasks, the right employees will be required to operate and supervise them, as well as apply focus on tasks that robots are not yet able to replicate. Rather than replacing workers, robots enhance their performance to drive improved quality and productivity.
Drones can inspect site conditions and progress clearly and at speed, as well as identify hazards. Devices such as laser detectors can be fitted too, and operated from various locations routinely, meaning less bodies are required on site.
Wearables embedded into the PPE of on-site staff are being implemented to monitor and protect both employees and the project itself. Devices such as biometrics and environmental sensors, trackers, Wi-Fi, voltage detectors, and movement monitors are being used to:
- Create control and knowledge of on-site presence
- Monitor an individual’s movements to prevent risk and injury
- Detect vital signs such as body temperature and heart rate to prevent ill health
- Protect for hazards
- Prevent spread of viruses and further losing staff to sick leave
With health and safety a huge risk factor in the construction industry, companies are focusing on monitoring their workforce at the individual level.
Skills Required in Construction Are Changing
Clearly, technology is impacting construction at a rapid pace. What once was a low-tech but highly skilled role now also requires tech skills. The nature of jobs in construction is changing. You need people who are:
- Forward thinking
- Willing to learn
- Confident embracing technology to achieve the business’s vision
At Pivot Workforce, we specialize in locating the right people for construction and tech business needs. Get in touch today and we will find the manpower you need for your company to excel ahead of your competitors.