How Construction Technology Can Help Combat the Labor Shortage
The construction industry is booming. From the continuation of private-sector projects to entire cityscapes being transformed by President Biden’s Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, there seems to be more labor than the sector can handle. In fact, the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) anticipates that in 2022, the construction industry will need to hire an additional 650,000 workers to meet the increased demand.
Undoubtedly, construction managers nationwide are working hard to fill the labor gap. However, success in the years to come will require more than just increasing the number of workers. It’ll require cutting-edge technology that can increase efficiency, improve communication, and attract new generations of skilled labor. Thankfully, Join’s innovative preconstruction software is specially designed to do just that.
Understanding the Labor Problem
The Covid-19 pandemic brought unprecedented changes to the United States workforce. Between the months spent working at home and stimulus-padded pockets, workers in every industry shifted their goals and perspectives to fit their newfound lifestyles. Millions of workers continue to leave their jobs every month, creating a time of “Great Resignation” and leaving many positions unfilled.
In construction specifically, more than 40 percent of the labor force is made up of entry-level, unskilled workers. But to meet the industry’s current demand, skilled labor is crucial. As the Infrastructure spending bill creates more jobs in the sector, more qualified craft professionals are necessary to carry out the projects effectively.
Of course, time is of the essence, and high-quality craftsmanship is only possible with the kind of hands-on experience that can take years to develop. That said, construction managers will have to turn to the tools at their disposal to deliver first-rate projects on time and within budget.
Speed Up Preconstruction
Planning and designing a build is no small task. It requires careful consideration of timelines, cost estimations, labor delegation, and more. With so many moving parts, changing numbers, and unknown outcomes, it’s critical that you use a planning tool that can keep up with your ever-changing needs.
A preconstruction planning platform can drastically reduce the time you spend reconfiguring costs and updating estimates. Simply plug your most current plans, numbers, and anticipated outcomes, and let the software do the rest. You’ll save time on tedious clerical tasks so you can focus instead on training your team and keeping your stakeholders happy.
Despite the diligent planning that happens during the preconstruction phase, construction managers know that projects can quickly become derailed. Limited workers, poor communication, supply chain issues, and design changes can all contribute to a lack of workplace efficiency. However, when using the right technology for the job, you can quickly improve your project workflows and lessen the burden of limited labor.
Use construction planning and design software that can tap into historical data to provide the most relevant insight for your current project. You’ll gain a clearer understanding of your strengths and weaknesses throughout a build timeline so you can better optimize your processes and output. What’s more, you’ll get real-time updates about anticipated changes and completed tasks so you can delegate work accordingly.
Leverage Quick Communication
Communication is a critical component of effective teams, especially when everyone is wearing multiple hardhats to combat the lack of available workers. Centralized digital communication can help keep you organized in your outreach without constantly disrupting daily workflows. Additionally, team members can check in with each other to ensure they’re working together to complete tasks efficiently.
Lessen Downtime and Boost Timeline Accuracy
When navigating a labor shortage, you must ensure that the workers you have are safely performing at their maximum potential. Equipment breakdowns, supply chain issues, and damaged resources can cause massive slowdowns or even all-out work stoppages, leaving your team to wonder what comes next.
However, construction software can improve your work rate and help you deliver on-time builds. Your team will know right where to go to determine what tasks they can work on in the event of a stoppage. Moreover, you’ll have the freedom and flexibility to make future decisions that can offset the stoppage, keeping your stakeholders happy with timely project completion.
Attract the Next Generation of Laborers
Software can take us a long way in combatting the labor shortage, but the need for qualified human labor isn’t going away anytime soon. When it comes to new generations of workers, technology can help attract the talent necessary to carry the construction industry forward.
Young people aren’t going to join industries that prioritize massive spreadsheets and cumbersome blueprint scrolls over clean, user-friendly technology that can be accessed anywhere. They’re motivated more by entrepreneurship, independence, and digitization. Providing opportunities to engage in this kind of work can help attract more skilled labor to the field, thus alleviating the labor shortage and improving the industry’s outlook.
Join the Next Wave of Workers
Construction technology can drastically improve the landscape of the industry. With new software, increased federal and private funding, and practices that evolve with the times, the sector has the potential to skyrocket in the years to come.
If you’d like to see how Join’s software can improve your processes and help you combat the industry’s labor shortage, reach out today for a free demo.