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Five Construction Trends

Five Construction Trends

The construction industry is showing increasing concerns of a slowdown. Though contractors are optimistic about most markets, the concerns are centered around the following issues:

  • Consistently high interest rates that weaken demands for multifamily housing, warehouses, retail buildings, offices, and lodging.
  • Domestic procurement requirements.
  • Slow funding from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.
  • Labor concerns.

Despite the growing concerns, leading construction technologists believe that the expected economic climate and last year’s momentum in digital adoption give opportunity for the industry to innovate in the following key areas.

Preconstruction

Ranking as the second-highest strategic priority, preconstruction is becoming a higher investment priority. Contractors are gaining an understanding that with the increasing complexity of construction projects, an organized preconstruction plan can help decrease rework, grow profitability, and increase productivity. With the industry’s expected slowdown, contractors will need to ensure that the projects in their pipeline are running efficiently, preconstruction technology will help contractors avoid backlog.

Subcontractor networking

According to a survey by PlanHub, 55 percent of subcontractors surveyed say they rarely bid on projects from general contractors if they have not had earlier contact. As more general contractors begin looking for more competitive bids for specialty work to keep cost down, subcontractors have an opportunity and obligation to expand their networks and increase business by developing new working relationships.

 

Conversational AI

AI made it big in 2023 with the introduction of Togal.AI from Florida contractor Coastal Construction in the areas of construction estimating and the ability to talk to construction plans and documents, which cut hours of manual work. It was also a big year for automating the building code research process using an AI powered code research assistant. The industry is expecting a build on these achievements in 2024 with technology that will allow people on job sites to interact with construction technology similar to texting or chatting on apps.

Democratizing Contech through education

The biggest question concerning AI in the construction industry is how to make it accessible and usable in all aspect of the industry. Education on how to use it efficiently and how it can add value to the day-to-day workflow will be critical. If employees are intimidated by the technology and don’t have the training or education, it will not be an effective tool and will cost more in time and money.

A better grasp of carbon tracking

Carbon tracking can be challenging for contractors, especially when the industry lacks centralized platforms for measurement. However, tools and data sets already exist to make construction a less carbon-intensive industry. The trend is that contractors will start to figure out how to track and measure more clearly, by understanding what to look at and what can be measured.

 

07/05/2024

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