The Evolution of Construction Technology
The construction sector plays catch up as it races to implement the latest technology on the job site.
As Charles Darwin famously observed, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that is most adaptable to change.”
Evolutionary pressure has helped fuel the implementation of new technology solutions on the job site. While the construction industry has been slow to change, contractors are now under pressure to address chronic problems, such as finishing jobs late and over-budget.
“The pressure to act is rising,” according to McKinsey. “Demand is soaring. The scale of players and projects is increasing, making a more productive system more viable.” Meanwhile, the price of technology continues to fall, making solutions that can dramatically improve productivity much more accessible. This is leading to a spike in tech adoption as builders race to implement solutions that can help them compete, and catch up with other, more digitized industries.
Digitization is Now Underway
The economic imperative to change has finally reached the tipping point. What’s more, the benefits of embracing new technology are clear. They include increased safety, lower costs, and greater efficiency.
The rise of mobile devices, cloud computing, and big data has opened up a new frontier for construction. And today the digitization of the job site is well underway. McKinsey cites three main clusters where digitalization is happening: onsite execution, back office integration, and digital collaboration. But the transformation won’t happen without its challenges. For larger companies, identifying and implementing new technology can’t be done overnight. It takes time to make technology purchases, train workers, and integrate new field solutions with the back office.
The good news? If construction productivity—lead by technology adoption—can match the total economy, the sector could be looking at $1.6 Trillion in added value worldwide. So there’s a pretty good case for companies to make the investment.
A New Era for Construction
As the race to digitize the built world continues, contractors have begun integrating everything from smartphones and tablets to AI-powered software into their daily workflows.
If you’re on the job site every day, you know how software and devices can help builders connect, collaborate, and make smarter decisions — faster, more efficiently and, yes, more cost-effectively. One of the most promising technologies to hit the construction site may even be flying over your head right now. You guessed it: drones. With the costs of drone hardware bottoming in the last few years, and the advent of easy-to-implement software, many companies see ROI the moment the digital bird completes its first flight.
But it’s not just drones that site managers, surveyors, superintendents, and BIM coordinators now use to jumpstart workflows and eliminate friction. Smartphones and cloud-based apps are also helping transform workforce silos by facilitating better collaboration and efficiency between contractors. These tools also enable teams to move faster, work smarter, and keep clients in the loop every step of the way. And while we’re just beginning to see the results of these technology investments, we expect big things on the horizon for the industry as it sheds its past and emerges in a more productive, digitized form.
Top Technologies Reshaping the Future of Construction
There are a whole host of integrated tech solutions used on construction sites today. But there is still a long way to go. For example, your mobile device can be used to communicate with key stakeholders, access drawings in the cloud, measure the impact of your decisions, and even fly your drone.
As you no doubt have figured out, we think drone technology is mandatory in the modern construction company’s equipment arsenal. But, drones are just one of five important technologies that we think you can’t live without. Read our new eBook, The Connected Job Site, to get a better idea of how technology is reshaping the industry in 2018 and beyond.
Staying Competitive in a Changing Environment
Construction companies that want to be competitive in today’s marketplace need to be using technology for everything from real-time site monitoring to mission-critical decision-making. That means you need to be thinking about how technology factors into your business ecosystem.
Remember, it’s all about survival of the fittest. Now is the time to make sure your company is among the fittest in the industry.
Where to Learn More
Interested in learning more about how drones and technology can improve safety and efficiency on construction sites?
Read our recent eBook to get a better idea of the leading technologies and how to implement them.
Or tune into our ongoing construction webinar series:
- Improving Commercial Inspections and Job Site Safety with Drones
- Getting the Green Light for Your In-House Drone Program
- Managing Construction Projects with Drone Data
- Tracking and Communicating Site Progress with Drones
Ready to bring drones to your job site? Read our guide to starting a drone program.
Get Started with DroneDeploy
Want to learn how DroneDeploy can help your business? Visit www.dronedeploy.com to start your free trial or request a consultation with one of our team members. The DroneDeploy mobile application is available for free download for both iOS and Android devices.