Contech Trends in 2023

Contech Trends in 2023

Surety Bond Professionals is a family owned and operated bonding agency with over 30 years of experience. With access to a broad range of surety markets, our expert agents are ready to assist with all of your construction bond needs.

Technology Drives Progress

In every field of human endeavor, technology drives progress. It’s hard to think of any new development in construction technology that has failed to increase efficiency, productivity, and/or quality. It may, however, take some time for construction businesses to embrace and adopt new technology. The benefits of doing so must be clear enough for companies to make the necessary investment in new technology and reap the rewards. And sometimes, it takes a major challenge for the benefits of investing in construction technology to become readily apparent.

Challenges Driving Technology Adoption in Construction

For many construction firms, the global Covid-19 pandemic was probably the greatest such challenge to arise in recent years. The shortage of skilled construction workers has been and remains a major challenge. Other key challenges, some directly linked to the pandemic, include:

  • the need to compete against construction companies with a high rate of technology adoption, 
  • supply chain disruptions and the resulting materials shortages and high materials costs, 
  • the need for cybersecurity, 
  • cash flow issues, and more.

And sometimes, technology adoption is driven by opportunities for improvement that are simply too good to ignore. This is certainly true of the projects receiving funding through the Infrastructure Improvement and Jobs Act (IIJA). In fact, IIJA is incentivizing technology adoption by construction companies by providing $100 million specifically for that purpose.

Contech Can Address Labor Shortages

Many contractors, especially smaller companies, are scrambling to hire enough skilled laborers to keep up with their current workload, let alone establish the capacity to handle larger projects or more projects at the same time. Some construction tasks can be performed by specialized machines and, in the near future, by robots. Drones can cut down on the time it takes to map job sites, perform inspections, and maintain security while improving the accuracy of the results. One skilled drone operator can eliminate the need for multiple “boots-on-the-ground” workers to perform such time-consuming tasks. Additionally, software can optimize scheduling workflows and worker deployment and management. 

Contech Makes Contractors Less Vulnerable to Cybersecurity Threats

Digital security is a concern for most business organizations, and small to medium-sized contractors are prime targets for ransomware attacks and email breaches. The security may be greater for contractors that have implemented BIM, but encryption programs can provide a large measure of protection.

Contech Enhances the Ability to Share and Manage Data

BIM is at the heart of the digital transformation of the construction industry, providing a centralized dataset supporting collaboration among all parties involved in a construction project. With all parties having real-time visibility into design and build information, plans, and schedules, on-time, within-budget project completion is far more likely through early conflict detection and resolution, greater operational efficiency, and improved quality.

Implementing and integrating financial systems also leads to better management of construction projects and prevents unanticipated cash flow problems. Contractors lost $208 billion in 2022 due to late payments—a problem that can be addressed successfully by integrated financial systems that handle payroll, accounting, billing, invoicing, and nearly every other aspect of financial management in construction.

Additionally, adopting and integrating advanced data systems can help resolve supply chain management issues. It also can enhance worksite safety (through worker location tracking), support accurate cost estimation, and provide the basis for learning from what did and did not work well on previous projects. The ability to manage Big Data is essential for continuous improvement.

Contech Supports Building Contractors’ Bonding Capacity

A key consideration for surety bond providers is how well a contracting business is managed. A surety’s underwriters want to see on-time project completion, projects that have come in under or at least within budget, no project defaults or successful claims against a contractor’s performance or payment bonds, a clean safety record, and other sure signs of construction experience and financial strength and stability.

Construction technology can make a positive impact in all of those areas, making it easier for contractors to build their bonding capacity in terms of the amount they are willing to guarantee per bond and in the aggregate for all of a company’s construction bonds.

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