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Unlocking construction productivity

Construction productivity is a key issue for our industry, or more specifically the lack of it.

The lack of construction productivity within our industry stifles innovation, raising costs, adding risk and waste across project life cycles and hinders our ability to improve the value realised from our built environment.

But why? What causes the lack of construction productivity in our industry?

Constructing Excellence recently asked its membership what they considered to be the barriers to unlocking construction productivity.

The survey was designed to gather industry perceptions on the barriers to innovation, and hence construction productivity, and to provide some insights into the root causes of – and potential solutions to – those barriers.

The findings of this report (Unlocking Productivity) show that for our sector, the real challenges to improving construction productivity remain at a more fundamental level.

This will come as no surprise to seasoned observers and the issues we still face have been recognised across the sector for many years. Improving collaboration across the supply chain, addressing the way in which we procure projects, clients being able to demonstrate leadership to foster innovation and addressing the ‘cultural and behavioural’ issues which undermine progress are challenges we have been grappling with for decades.

Not only do these grass roots issues require collective collaboration across the sector to finally resolve them, but also completely new skills are to be developed urgently if we want to increase our industry’s data literacy in order to realise the immense opportunities brought to us by data science.

The burning platform that our industry has had for decades burns brighter than ever and as the report states If we can do this, our industry can play a central part in delivering the possibilities of the fourth industrial revolution.

We at Invennt have championed Constructing Excellence for many years and it was a pleasure to finish my 2 years as co-chair of G4C being asked to contribute to the reports forward. Like CE we believe in a better way of doing things and believe that our industry has the potential to exceed excellence and become the industry that we are proud to be part of and the industry that everyone wants to be a part of.

We have and will continue to contribute to the movement as we believe that it is the platform that can work with government in a collaborative way to overcome these barriers and meet these challenges head on.

These are exciting times for our industry with the digital revolution providing us an excellent opportunity to improve productivity within our industry. BIM, the internet of things, smart cities, VR, AR, 3d printing, the list is endless in terms of the tools that are at our disposal but as of yet are not being fully utilised.

Ben Pritchard is a consultant at Invennt and past co-Chair of G4C.