After a difficult 2023, the construction sector seems primed for a stronger year ahead. What can we expect as we go into 2024? Sustainability, tech, and workforce demand all rank high on the list. Read on for key insights to help you prepare.
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Where are we right now?
The construction industry, like many others, faced adversity in 2023. The prevailing sentiment has been one of adapting to short-term challenges, such as optimising costs within the current market conditions. However, the outlook for the next 12 to 24 months is marked by significant change.
Anticipate a gradual recovery in the housing market, with higher demand for residential building projects expected in the second half of 2024. Changes in how we approach offices are influencing office developments, leading to an uptick in refurbishment projects. Additionally, the surge in online retail is driving continued demand for warehousing and logistics facilities. [Source]
Amid these changes, there is a growing emphasis on sustainability and improved safety. The industry is witnessing calls for more sustainable buildings, pushing for new approaches to planning and execution. This shift is indicative of a broader movement towards greener and safer construction practices.
What can you do to keep up?
In order to succeed in this dynamic market, construction companies and professionals are looking to focus on three key trends.
- Heightened focus on sustainability
Sustainability remains a business imperative for the construction industry. Companies are challenged to adapt to evolving market trends, environmental regulations, and customer demands for greener buildings.
Strategies include reducing embodied carbon, incorporating passive design principles, and embracing sustainable materials.
In addition, there are growing opportunities within many projects to retrofit and update buildings according to new legislation and guidelines. An increase in these kinds of projects means there will be a need for more specialists in green and sustainable design.
- Technology and digitisation
In order to be successful, companies need to offer value and be more efficient. And in order to achieve peak efficiency, they need to embrace technology.
Investments in CRM systems, workforce management tools, marketing platforms, and project management systems are becoming non-negotiable. In the year ahead, we expect to see a stronger emphasis on AI-powered and digital tools, like drones, autonomous vehicles, and robotics.
Not only will these types of tools increase efficiency on site, but they will also ensure better safety standards.
Skills requirements will inevitably change to align with these new ways of working, and hiring teams need to stay up to date on what is happening in the wider market in order to attract the right people to their business.
- Access the right talent
The construction industry’s qualified workforce has been steadily shrinking since Brexit, meaning increased pressure on workload and skills availability. In order to counter this and to be able to meet deadlines and win projects in the new year, companies need access to the right network of candidates. Recruitment, training, and talent retention will emerge as key themes for the year ahead.
Prioritising worker safety, offering competitive compensation and benefits, and leveraging automation are just some of the steps you can take to ensure happier teams.
Navigating the construction industry in 2024 requires a proactive approach. Working with a specialised recruiter who knows and understands this industry is key in order to reach these goals – and we’d be happy to show you how we can help. Interested in learning more? Get in touch here.