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June 06, 2019

Four Big Shifts for Construction Businesses

constructionAs an industry, there are any number of forces that affect a construction business owner’s outlook from year to year. From recruitment to relationships, every aspect of the landscape can change annually – and it’s happening more than ever before as every department, from HR to IT, is driven to make important adjustments.

When it comes to managing trends and deciding which ones are worth implementing, contractors must balance the need to incorporate traditional methodologies – i.e., self-perform work, relationship building, and site visits – with the need to adapt new strategies, including 3-D modeling software, cloud computing, and digital recruitment strategies.

In this article, we’ll look at four important topics that every construction business should consider in 2019 and beyond, along with some tips on how to manage these potentially game-changing strategies.

Four to Watch: Big Shifts for Construction Businesses

As an industry, experts have long warned construction businesses that there is a looming talent shortage. Guess what: even as the industry booms, this problem isn’t going away. While job fairs and on-campus recruiting have been the traditional avenues for finding the next generation workforce, along with internship programs, construction businesses should be looking to find their next candidate on networks like Linkedin, or by using specialized recruiting software, to ensure the shortage in workers doesn’t impact its ability to pursue new business.

The cloud represents another shift in strategy that the construction industry is beginning to adopt en masse. That said, the industry still lags behind other sectors that have used the cloud successfully for everything from collaboration tools to document sharing. For construction businesses, cloud-based project management software eliminates the gap between the field and the home office (while cutting down on paper wastes) and ensures every member of the team is on the same page.

Construction contracts should get a closer look from business owners and project management teams, as these documents shape the entirety of the project before a shovel is in the ground. Managing and writing contracts more effectively means understanding the devil is in the details, from hidden contract obligations to underselling the true scope of work. Fortunately, construction ERP software can streamline this essential process.

Finally, keeping a finger on the pulse of still-emerging technologies is important for understanding what’s coming next and how it may affect your business operations. 3-D printing, smart wearable devices, BIM, robotic workers, and drones are all real-world technology that could be coming to a jobsite near you – and soon.

Using Technology to Think Like an Entrepreneur

While looking towards the future can help you prepare for what’s next, so can looking back. The construction industry remains a popular beachhead for entrepreneurs seeking their first venture into owning and running a business. As many established companies know, it may begin with single pickup truck and a shovel, but it rarely remains that simple. Licenses, financing, business plans, and generous insurance policies are all essential tools one needs when starting a construction company.

Likewise, the type of technology you choose to arm your project managers and field crews with can have a significant impact on the efficiency and profitability of your work. United Solutions is your partner when it comes to identifying construction project management software or mobile field tools that make your workers masters at their craft, both on the jobsite and off. Contact us today for a technology assessment or product demonstration to help you stay ahead of the curve and ready for what’s next.

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