Keep Constructing, But with New Safety Procedures

May 26, 2020 Karli Langner

According to Construction Dive, COVID-19 has caused 25% of US contractors to reduce staff, while nearly 60% have reported not reducing their team at all.

This is a good sign that the construction industry is surviving the pandemic, but everyday brings new information and reason to stay on our toes. To keep business going, certain restrictions are in place and are expected to be followed so that we can continue to push projects forward. 

In just two months, COVID-19 has completely shaken up our industry – and many others – and the way we do business may change forever. Let’s look at how COVID-19 has altered our sector:

  • A new focus on worker health and safety: Jobsites and offices will be equipped with more hand-washing stations located across the site. Some businesses require employees to wear masks and gloves, have their temperature checked, and everything from tools to trucks to be disinfected. A cleaner, less crowded work environment, with social distancing in place, will protect workers.
  • Management teams are feeling the need to be more flexible and creative as to how specific tasks are performed. If predictions are correct that the virus will be here for a year or more, employers need to have policies and procedures and a business continuity plan in place to keep their businesses running.
  • The new normal is that specific safety policies will continue after the outbreak subsides, especially the safe distancing one, to mitigate risk on jobsites further. Limiting the handling of paperwork, for example, is a policy that improves safety and will continue to be a major effort going forward. 
  • There is an increased need for a supply chain network to connect the entire construction ecosystem, from contractors and DOTs to haulers, producers, and suppliers. A connected ecosystem of supply chain participants brings visibility up and down the supply chain, allowing each business to see what is happening and to uncover any bottlenecks that can slow a project.
  • The priorities of completing construction projects is different as hospitality, retail, and entertainment projects take a back seat to healthcare-related projects. Demand for warehousing space will increase as companies will hold more inventory to keep customer service levels up. Manufacturing projects will also grow as well as many companies relocate to North America to keep transport costs down and ensure product supplies are available. 

New technologies and construction methods will take priority in the near future as labor costs keep going up due to these increased health and safety regulations. The industry was already suffering from the labor shortage problem, and COVID-19 has exacerbated matters even more now. New tech solutions to reduce the demand for physical labor will become the new norm.

Command Alkon's CONNEX Jobsite suite of solutions can fill the gaps that the labor shortage creates when personnel on the jobsite is slim. Schedule a 15-minute call with us to get the scoop on CONNEX Jobsite!

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