According to CB Insights, the construction industry is one of the last industries to be digitized. So, what does this mean for contractors and their business?
The evolution of manufacturing is a helpful analogy, as that industry’s adoption of automation, lean processes and high-end data analytics have significantly increased efficiencies—driving profits. As construction projects become more complex, owners more demanding and competition more aggressive, technology is the key differentiator—enabling companies to compete at these new levels.
For any company, adopting new processes and technologies is a huge and uncomfortable challenge. And to make the leap, companies must put in place the right people to carry out this vision. The digital revolution in construction is coming and companies that invest in the processes, people and technology first will come out on top.
With the current market experiencing so much change, there has been a polarization between companies who have innovated around technology to keep up with market challenges and those who have not. At Pillar, we have worked with both and have found there to be a distinct difference.
One of the biggest challenges we have faced as a technology provider to the industry is the investment required from the contractor to actually learn how to use these tools properly, especially in these early stages where new tools are being introduced for the first time onto the jobsite. Our customers who have actively invested manpower and time into learning have seen far more return on investment. In turn, these tools have helped improve onsite processes and increase day-to-day efficiency.
One thing is certain, technology on the construction site is here to stay. Whether driven by margin, regulation or necessity, our industry is seeing a wealth of investment going into technology to support the future demands of the built environment. From what we have seen at Pillar, contractors that take risks on new technology will have a large competitive advantage in their future.
Alex Schwarzkopf is cofounder and CEO at Pillar Technologies.