Throughout 2021, we saw how strong the construction industry really is as our teams worked through staffing shortages, rising costs, project delays and more. GlobalData projects 3.2% growth for the construction industry worldwide. Even though we are happy to see things moving in the right direction, it’s important to note that this is the slowest growth predicted in a decade. But despite this slow growth, the industry is still hopeful and ready to tackle any challenge. A recent study from the Associated General Contractors of America and Sage Construction and Real Estate found that the majority of construction companies (75%) plan to expand their workforce this year.
With that being said, the construction industry is moving forward cautiously. In that same study, about a quarter of respondents said they expect to face some hiring challenges in meeting this hiring goal. To combat these expected challenges and continue to move the industry forward in 2022, innovations will be critical.
Luckily, there are some exciting advancements in sight. Keep reading for the top 5 trends to look out for this year.
- Modular Construction
This production trend is growing in popularity, and it’s easy to see why. Modular construction takes the building process off-site before transporting the completed pieces to the jobsite to be assembled. This new take on construction cuts costs and shortens the construction timeline. People worldwide are moving to this construction style, with many estimating that the modular construction market worth will climb to nearly $160 billion by next year.
- Sustainable Solutions
Over the past few years, we have seen the shift to more sustainable building practices as people everywhere share the same concern for the future of our environment. And, we anticipate this to continue well beyond 2022, thanks to incentives like eco-friendly designations and tax credits. What will change this year is the new types of sustainable advancements. There are more options for sustainable building than ever before, with more being developed every day. For example, the new brick “K-Briq” brings the best functions of traditional brick with a sustainable twist. K-briqs are made of 90% recycled construction site and demolition materials. We can only imagine how the trend to sustainability will encourage fresh innovation this year.
- Redesigned PPE for Women
As more women join the construction workforce, it’s become clear that modifications to existing personal protective equipment (PPE) is necessary. Construction PPE has historically been designed for the male body type, leading to female workers wearing loose-fitting, uncomfortable gear that don’t support her safety. We are hopeful that construction companies throughout Ohio will provide proper PPE for all body types and needs this year. This trend will help encourage a more diverse group of people to join the workforce and fill in our growing labor gap.
Speaking of outerwear, we expect to see an influx of exoskeletons this year. Exoskeletons support construction workers through the most strenuous activities, from power gloves that aid grip strength to full-body suits that amplify strength while diminishing strain. Adopting exoskeleton support will help workers push back retirement and, in the end, prevent the labor shortage from worsening.
- Cost-Effective Technology
After an expensive year last year, we anticipate organizations everywhere will seek out cost-saving opportunities. While no one can influence the cost of materials, leaders can look for solutions that cut back on time spent. After all, time is money. Investing in something like drones can help capture the jobsite faster than other methods. With new technology being developed daily, it will be up to individual organizations to determine which solutions are worth spending hard-earned money to save in the long-run.
These are just five of the top construction trends for 2022. If you are a construction professional, we want to hear from you: which trends are you excited for this year? Share in the comments below.