Competition Intensifies in Construction as Growth Slows and Costs Rise

Posted on April 19, 2017

According to PwC’s 19th annual global CEO survey, 64 percent of CEOs of engineering and construction firms believe they face more economic threats than they did just three years ago. This may seem counterintuitive, given the uptick in growth in the industry. U.S. construction starts were up about 15 percent in 2015, and another 6 percent last year. Dodge Data & Analytics predicts total U.S. construction starts for 2017 will advance 5 percent to $713 billion.

So why are CEOs still worried?

Because along with the growth comes increased competition. Firms must grapple with the on-going labor shortage  and rising cost of materials and equipment, which is outpacing inflation. Although President Donald Trump proposed a $1 trillion infrastructure plan over 10 years, including trading an 82-percent tax break for private equity investment in revenue-generating infrastructure projects, most firms are still skeptical that it will happen. Possible trade conflicts with China and other countries could force material prices up even higher, and stricter immigration policies may make the labor shortage even worse.
Jones Lang LaSalle, IP, Inc. predicts shrinking budgets and the need to consolidate services to clients will intensify competition for projects throughout 2017. To compete effectively, construction firms must embrace engineering and construction technologies and specialization; otherwise, they’ll be crushed by larger firms that have access to lower-cost labor and the budgets to cover rising costs.

Cutting Costs to Stay Competitive

New technologies can help firms reduce expenses and shorten project completion timeframes, which creates market differentiation. Firms that are able to take on projects and stay on-schedule and under budget will set themselves apart and enable them to take on more work, despite having fewer workers. Efficiencies in project tracking and management can help avoid delays, freeing up budget to afford expensive materials and avoid waste. And boosting jobsite efficiency by streamlining processes and improving collaboration will keep projects moving along with fewer hitches or unnecessary expenses.

Construction cameras can play a critical part in helping firms improve jobsite efficiencies while enhancing communication between stakeholders throughout the project lifecycle. Advanced solutions offer time-lapse photography, live video streaming and security recording to help managers track projects from start to finish, cut costs and speed project completion.

Here are just a few ways cameras can help construction firms stay competitive:

  • Cameras can capture progress on the jobsite from all angles, keeping project managers and foremen current on the construction status and enabling them to fine-tune schedules.
  • Jobsite cameras enable continuous vigilance that motivates workers to do their best, be productive and follow procedures.
  • Real-time video streaming to remote desktop or mobile users reduces required travel while keeping stakeholders up to date on project progress.
  • Video files and photos can be uploaded automatically into project management software, saving time and eliminating manual time-consuming tasks.
  • Camera footage provides transparency to investors about a project’s progress, including justification for delays caused by weather or other factors.
  • Security cameras deter costly theft, and should an incident occur, provide ready documentation both for finding and prosecuting thieves and explaining any costs or delays associated with the incident.

Watch a demo to see how TrueLook cameras can help you stay on top of project status and progress, to help you eliminate inefficiencies and set yourself apart from other firms in this increasingly competitive market.

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