The construction industry is one sector that has been hit especially hard by the difficult events of 2020. From a global pandemic to widespread unemployment, these events have resulted in project delays and cancellations, as well as workers being let go. Some have had to work in unsafe, unhealthy conditions because of the numerous environmental challenges.
As upsetting as these developments have been for individuals and their families, there are some ways that the construction industry has responded that could have lasting positive effects on workers.
Many people have had to rely far more on technology this year than they might have previously. Options like videoconferencing, artificial intelligence, drones and virtual reality can make sites more accessible and efficient.
Previously, contractors and others in the construction industry had been slow to embrace these solutions, often citing a lack of money and need. However, this year has seen a considerable shift toward technology.
Appreciating worker safety
This time last year, most people never gave a second thought to things like wearing masks and keeping safe distances from others. Today, those measures are nearly standard.
In the context of construction workers, this could mean there is a new appreciation for protective gear, especially when it comes to equipment like masks.
Focusing on specificity and planning ahead
Construction projects of every size are complicated. And unfortunately, miscommunications and oversights can lead to delays and serious accidents.
However, this year, there has been a trend toward planning more carefully for the future and unexpected events. Parties have looked at everything from supply disruptions to on-site rules that may have been ignored in previous projects. Today, they are more likely to see the value in careful planning and specificity.
Times of crisis can force people to take on a new perspective and find new solutions that improve how we do things. It will be interesting to see if these trends have a lasting – and positive – impact on the construction industry and those who work in it.