With constant last-minute forecast updates, increased construction costs decreased labor, and ever-changing expectations, we’re all collectively ready to bid farewell to a “challenging” 2021. Were we busy in 2021? Absolutely. But busy, doesn’t always translate to profitability. More stringent regulations have contributed to reduced margins for error, waste, and ultimately the bottom line. It’s not all bad though! CEO Carmen Fiorilli has always been a forward thinker. For years, he’s encouraged the admin teams to think differently and challenge themselves to come up with innovative ideas and practices that keep us at the forefront of the industry. Below are some trends we believe will help make 2022 significantly better than its predecessor.

Innovative Equipment

Cool wearable tech like work boots that connect to Wi-Fi and alert others if an accident happens. New material-moving machines can move heavy or hazardous materials, and even robots construct scaffolding or lay bricks autonomously. Some headsets actively reduce noise pollution and keep workers in tune with their surroundings. There are also environmental sensors that detect noise, heat, and wind at construction sites provide warnings to evacuate construction workers and move costly construction equipment in the event of an emergency or natural disaster.

Efficient Technology

Since the pandemic, there’s been an increased reliance on construction technology. Smart contracts deliver all organizations in a project a shared system allowing them to buy, track, and pay for services. Rather than getting contracts and tracking deliverables from separate parties, firms can use smart contacts as an all-in-one tracking system where rules and deadlines are set and the system enforces them. This system will bring faster closeouts, increased security, better project tracking, and an automatic supply chain. Drones usage has increased every year and 2022 will be no different. Not only does it provide aerial photos and video but is also being used for mapping large areas in real-time. Personal safety and equipment loss still be the most important liabilities in construction. Drones can perform jobs in place of human workers to prevent injury, such as jobs requiring scaling supertall structures. As on-site security tools, drones can be leveraged to reduce labor costs and minimize the risk of theft, keeping projects on schedule and minimizing hiccups.

Augmented Reality (AR)

AR increases efficiency for project staging and provides a visual experience for buyers and tenants. For builders and developers, AR facilitates 3D visualization of forthcoming projects on their surrounding environment, measurings, architectural and structural changes, and safety training and hazard simulations

Need for Laborers

One of the most evident construction trends of the past few years is a vast increase in the demand for labor. Good labor is in short supply making it expensive and competitive. Thankfully, more high school-aged kids are showing interest in the trades and choosing alternative educational options. This should hopefully translate to a wider pool of skilled laborers to pull from. Don’t be surprised to see construction firms take up residency at area job fairs.

Working Remotely

COVID-19 mandated that teams continue to collaborate without physical access to materials, spaces, or even other team members. Mobile applications in the construction industry allow worksite access like never before, including real-time inspections, on-site accountability, and accurate measurements taken from a mobile phone camera. Without the ability to connect remotely, will put you at a huge disadvantage.

Materials still on the Rise

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the Producer Price Index for construction goods increased by 17% in 2021. Growing interest rates are conceivable to increase all types of costs, resulting in further pressure on the industry. While technology may push up costs further, innovative materials like transparent aluminum, light-generating concrete, and invisible solar cells will result in big savings down the road.

Green Building

Green construction is the desired standard for end-users. The problem is most sustainable and eco-friendly features remain a luxury, despite their long-term savings — though this will change over the next decade as Ecotech and sustainable construction become more mainstream. Fiorilli has worked on many projects that have achieved LEED certification. With LEED Accredited Professionals on staff, we are a knowledgeable resource for LEED planning, design, construction, and certification process.

Modular and Offsite Construction

Prefabricated or prefab construction has been gaining huge momentum and doesn’t show any sign of stopping in 2022. Coupled with a labor shortage and cost savings, the modular construction market is predicted to maximize in value to almost $110 billion somewhere around 2025. These construction industry trends are rapidly changing the global market — increases in prices and experienced labor shortages are probable to continue for the foreseeable future. Embracing new approaches, leveraging new technologies, and investing in new projects will enable companies like us to reduce risk, win more contracts, and hopefully at the end of the day – increase profitability. Cheers to a healthy and profitable 2022!

The Fiorilli Construction Family