As a leading commercial construction framing subcontractor, Unique Building Group (UBG) keeps its finger on the pulse of the latest trends, news, and industry happenings. Due to the volume of large-scale projects we complete every year and our wide network of industry connections, our teams remain at the forefront of commercial construction evolutions and enhancements. It’s one of the ways that we remain competitive, continue to grow, and sustain our reputation as one of the very best large-scale framing subcontractors in the industry.
It’s hard to believe we’re already more than halfway through 2022, so we thought we’d take the opportunity to pause and review some of the topics currently trending in large-scale construction. Here is a list of 5 commercial construction topics on everyone’s mind:
Safety is and will always be the single most important topic and trend in commercial construction. This industry has more workplace accidents and deaths than any other, and the only way to improve outcomes is to keep safety front and center in everyone’s minds. Not only do construction accidents hurt the workers (and their families) that we depend on, but they also impact costs and operational efficiency.
We’ll continue to see a strong emphasis on safety training program enhancements and new safety-related technology across the industry for the remainder of 2022 and every year to come. This is one of the reasons why a commitment to safety is UBG’s number one priority and why we invest so much every year in improving the quality of our safety program.
2. New Technology
Technology improves construction efficiency and safety, and innovative new products hit the market every year. It’s in every subcontractor’s best interest to evaluate and use these tools where applicable to enhance output quality and project efficiency. When it comes to large-scale construction, we generally see technology advancements rapidly growing in three main areas:
- Safety And Communication – Quick communication and immediate incident response are essential for on-the-job efficiency. Tools and apps that help spread awareness about job size hazards, report incidents, and share important project plans and documents are improving the way we communicate and saving everybody time. We’re seeing more of these products hit the market as well as major enhancements and improvements to existing tools.
- Cameras and Imaging – It’s never been easier and more efficient to capture high-definition images of every element of a large-scale construction project. Through wearable technology, small cameras, and most importantly, drones, we’re able to capture every element of a project or job site with incredible detail. We’ve come a long way in terms of construction imaging.
- Project Management Software – End-to-end construction management software is a must-have, and these tools become more and more advanced with each iteration. This software can be used for estimating, sharing files, communication, budgeting, document storage, safety incident documentation, and dozens of other things. Using construction management software is essential for keeping projects on track.
At UBG, we use PlanGrid to help us track tasks and progress on every project, and Plexxis serves as our end-to-end project management platform. Both tools help give us a competitive advantage on projects.
Commercial construction companies that aren’t using the latest and greatest technology in 2022 will quickly fall behind. Investing in technology advancement is one of the ways UBG remains competitive and one of the reasons why GCs trust UBG to perform on every job.
3. A High Demand For Skilled Labor
There has been a general labor shortage in commercial construction since 2020, but that shortage is even larger when it comes to specialized large-scale construction. Finding high-quality talent is a real challenge. The shortage started when demand for new construction was at an all-time high; however, many expect this labor shortage will only intensify in the second half of the year even as inflation cools new development demand. The aging (and retiring) workforce is part of the driver behind the labor shortage, and so we expect to see more of a focus on training programs and education geared at attracting younger talent to the industry. Wage growth is also likely to occur industry-wide, which will ultimately impact overall project costs.
4. The Cost Of Materials
Building anything right now is expensive. Inflation and supply chain issues are taking a toll on commercial construction just like every other industry. The end result: more expensive building materials. This includes everything from concrete, drywall, steel, and aluminum. Being able to secure affordable materials is key to submitting competitive bids, so it’s no surprise many companies are scrambling.
5. Green Construction
Energy efficiency is top of mind for every developer these days, and green construction is now par for the course on commercial construction projects. Sustainable construction encompasses everything from building materials to technology solutions that help to reduce a building’s carbon footprint. Automated shading and lighting solutions, renewable energy sources, and incorporating green space onto rooftops are a few of the most common energy efficiency features we often see being worked into project plans today.
The effects of the pandemic are still having a major impact on the construction industry nearly two years after the outbreak began. Labor shortages, inflation, and the possibility of slowing growth are all top of mind for most companies. However, we expect companies that produce high-quality results, focus on safety, and invest in technology will come out on top. These are three areas that UBG has remained committed to year after year.
If you’re looking for a reliable commercial framing subcontractor who has a solid reputation and remains at the forefront of industry trends, contact us at UBG today. With some of the industry’s leading talent, no project is too large or complicated for our team.