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Construction Industry Trending in Right Direction

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We’re all plenty familiar with the reputation of the construction industry with regards to its attitudes towards technology and adoption of new tools. For years, it has been known as a space filled with personnel resistant to change, leading to inefficient workflows and projects too often going over budget and/or falling behind schedule. Although there is still some truth to this, it’s more true to say that most in the industry are simply sick of hearing it, and will say that it’s an unfair stereotype. Looking around the landscape, you can see why, as more technology is being developed than ever and demand clearly exists for these tools.

From an article in Geo Week News by Matt Collins.

And so while the industry, one of the largest on the planet, may still not be where many would like it to be in terms of adoption technology, it’s moving closer to that point with each passing year. Procore is one of the companies with the best view of this growth as a provider of construction management platforms, working first-hand with both those in the industry and those making tools for the industry. They’re already starting to look towards the year ahead of what can be expected in construction in 2024, finding trends to watch by speaking with current and prospective customers.

To learn more about what they’re expecting, Geo Week News recently spoke with Sasha Reed, Senior Director of Industry Transformation with Procore.

Increasing adoption of established technology

In thinking about an industry that is supposed to be up-and-coming with technological adoption, one would probably think that means utilizing new tools. There’s certainly some of this in all areas – like autonomous heavy machinery in coming years, and more powerful software platforms – but one of the main themes of our conversation with Reed involved greater adoption in tools that have been around for decades.

That includes, for example, Internet of Things (IoT) sensors. While she acknowledges that these sensors have been around and utilized for at least a decade at this point, they’ve largely been leveraged by building owners and operators. She says now, they’re starting to see more usage on the construction site, in part because firms are becoming more savvy combined with better WiFi being available in the field, as ways to capture more crucial information.

“I think this is something really critical for construction to go from digitization to digitalization,” Reed said. “Digitization is just, I was using a clipboard and paper, and now I’m using an iPad in the form fill. That’s digitization – we’ve taken paper and gone digital. The digitalization is the actual transformation of the business processes.”

A lot of this comes back to that idea of owners becoming more savvy, which includes the building and asset owners. In talking with people throughout the industry this year, we’ve seen an attitude that owners are finally more willing to adopt technology in construction processes, and in fact often push for it now. Reed believes this has been a trend over the last five to 10 years, and can be traced back to the number of data centers which were being built in the last decade.

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