Strategic construction-related business owners know how important it is to stay knowledgeable of construction industry trends. Recognizing and identifying trends provide valuable insights to help decision-makers more effectively respond to changes and limit the associated disruptions of major shifts in the market. It also provides a competitive advantage in an ever-challenging industry.
There will be numerous trends to watch, but here are some influential construction industry trends to look for in 2023.
Labor Shortage Continues
The construction industry will continue to face labor shortages, especially skilled crafts people. Many construction professionals are near retirement or have already left the workforce. It takes significant time for necessary knowledge transfer to occur between industry veterans and younger new hires. And today, many people entering the workforce do not consider construction a viable option.
Recruiting More Women To Enter Construction Industry
More women have been entering the construction industry as recruitment efforts increase. There are some fundamental changes being made to make construction positions more appealing to women looking for work.
Construction Materials Cost Increases
Costs of critical construction materials are expected to continue to rise. Fortunately, there are some positive signs that relief is coming partially due to development of new construction materials such as engineered wood and aggregates.
Growth Of Modular and Prefabricated Construction
Modular and prefabricated construction continues to grow thanks to improved quality of components built in controlled environment; less waste being created at the construction site; and the building process proceeding more efficiently with fewer errors and/or budgetary overruns.
Expanded Deployment of Technology
The construction industry has been slow to adopt new technology. But that is changing significantly with the use of: Drones to monitor for safety risks, view existing conditions in hard to access places or to check measurements; the cloud to store documents instead of relying totally on paper; software to realize accelerated problem resolution and to build models of what is being constructed; and 3D printing to print spare parts and other essentials needed for their equipment instead of reordering them.
Focus On Profitability
Challenges within the construction industry have magnified the need to strategically manage construction projects and this will continue into 2023 and beyond. It is critical to have projects completed on time and safely. However, more focus will be directed to staying within the project budget, which means pursuing optimization of cost-savings and efficiency to achieve desired results.
Expanded Use of Sustainable Building Practices
Sustainable practices and building materials are very important. And construction clients are investing in companies that offer sustainable, environmentally friendly practices. Green building methods contribute to a more stable climate and reduce energy usage. Green building practices genuinely benefit everyone involved, and clients prioritize construction companies that utilize these methods.
Identifying and understanding forward looking trends and becoming trend savvy are required to quantify the rate of change and to be proactive in managing a construction-related business. A playbook to strategically respond to trends also is required to help with decision making that shows how to respond to the identified trends to improve business performance.
Glenn Ebersole is a registered professional engineer and is the Director of Business Development at JL Architects, a West Chester-based architectural firm serving clients locally, regionally and nationally. He can be reached at [email protected] or 717-575-8572.