The construction industry has shown its mettle during the COVID-19 pandemic, and the bounce back is now well and truly under way – with Britain’s construction sector recently seeing its fastest rate of growth since 2014.
And that’s because the sector adapted quickly to new ways of working and delivering for customers after COVID-19 hit in March last year. Projects that used to be managed through multiple site visits now had to be overseen remotely. Construction leaders adopted flexible working, streamlined services and improved information management almost overnight.
Today, organisations are relying on digital collaboration tools more and more, and project managers are increasingly putting down their hard hats and picking up smartphones and laptops to oversee multi-million-pound projects remotely.
Domestic and commercial premises are integrating gigabit technology into their projects at an early stage. And this means that workers and residents can get online in a heartbeat and the building itself can send real-time data on air quality and occupancy rates.
Whether it’s using drone technology to give 360-degree progress reports or interactive online design tools to give customers a virtual tour of their future offices and homes, some of the UK’s most exciting digital projects are happening in the construction sector.
To understand just how important digital investment is to the UK construction sector and nation’s rebound from COVID-19, we partnered with the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR) to explore how the UK economy could benefit from continued investment in digital change.
Our research found that, across both private and public sectors, investment in transformational digital technology could increase UK GDP by £232bn, or 6.9 per cent, by 2040.
And this would mean a £3bn uplift in the construction sector alone – a gain of nearly 2 per cent that would take the industry to £167bn by 2040.,
The UK construction sector now has a once-in-a-generation opportunity to invest in transformational digital technology and seize this potential.