How can you become the post-pandemic winner in the engineering and construction industry?
Projects are being delayed, and fresh possibilities are being halted worldwide in the engineering and construction sector. This momentary lull in inactivity means you have the opportunity to focus your personnel on speedy business improvements while preventing layoffs. If you have available human capital or alternatively you can hire a workforce through an employment agency like Primus Workforce, now is the moment to invest in your company's future.
COVID-19 is forcing individuals to reconsider where they live, how they commute, how they work, how they design, how they build, how they source, how they run, and how they maintain.
Before COVID-19, major cities' populations were already declining, and the pandemic could hasten this trend as individuals consider relocation to less heavily populated places.
The trend will accelerate with Millennials and Generation Z. To that end, they will seek smart home upgrades such as improved connectivity, infrastructure, and workspace.
More quick insights will become very significant in the field of managing employee health and worker safety post-COVID-19.
The Port of Antwerp, for example, is testing smartwatches that buzz if workers are too close, enabling the needed social separation of 1.5 m. We also predict increasing automation and robotics in intelligent EC&O workflows after COVID-19, with less human-to-human interaction to limit disease transmission.
The current situation has disrupted supply chain ecosystems, limited logistics, and exposed mid-market suppliers and subcontractors.
Competitors Can Capture Market Share
Construction, as a project-driven industry, is anecdotal. Market leaders are decided more by the performance of many projects and the capacity to preserve project margins than by any long-term intellectual property or supply chain advantage. Recently, it has been reported that the construction industry is primed for disruption by challenger enterprises willing to go to market in novel ways. Construction and engineering respondents were almost three times as likely to believe they had a chance to dislodge the market leaders in their field than, for instance, small manufacturers.
According to PWC, 71% of contractors are concerned about the financial consequences of the pandemic, including operational efforts, future periods of liquidity, and capital resources, and 64% are concerned about a worldwide recession. Massive corporations participating in large projects could be effectively stifled, allowing aggressive innovation construction rivals to move in.
This implies that a construction challenger business, with the correct investments in process and technology, is now in a good position to ascend through the ranks of the leading contractors by delivering projects faster, on schedule, to a higher quality, and at a lower price.
How To Win Over?
- By enhancing productivity and lowering costs by streamlining and automating project and subcontractor management procedures, the organization gains greater control and predictability, allowing for better, more informed decisions and the maintenance of higher project margins.
- Using modular or offsite construction delivery methods; utilizing new technologies such as BIM, automation, robotics, and IoT; actively managing risk to avoid surprises and delays; and becoming the most predictable, innovative, and trusted contractor, commanding higher contract values and increasing pipeline and opportunity win rates.
- Increasing revenue by offering contracts for maintenance and facility management
- Boost your firm's brand, pipeline, and bid success rate by implementing a world-class proven, predictable project delivery strategy that proves your company is an innovative industry leader.
- Being a successful, creative employer allows you to attract the greatest talented individuals and sustain high staff retention, which protects you from potential skill shortages caused by an older worker.
EC&O Firms Response to COVID-19
Respond, recover, and reinvent are the three steps EC&O firms are doing to fight the battle and manage the trip back to operational stability while preparing for the future.
We anticipate that the future of EC&O will be considerably more digital, with faster adoption of Industry 4.0, circularity, and the usage of distinguishing business networks.
First step: Response
Businesses are taking steps to respond to the COVID-19 challenge. Companies in the EC&O industry have prioritized community and labor health and safety. New collaborations have begun. Its goal is to "provide fresh, anonymous open data to scientists and public and commercial groups to study behavior in France and its impact on the epidemic's dynamics over time."
What Can E&CO Companies Do Immediately To Address The Immediate Effects Of COVID-19?
1. Safeguard and assist employees and stakeholders as they transition to new working modes and ecosystem collaboration.
2. Maintain IT stability, manage project risks, and ensure the availability of vital equipment, materials, components, and personnel.
3. Identify and modify important parts of the enterprise operating model, such as project delivery, resource mix, and processes, to accommodate new working methods.
4. Assess risk about demand, supply, projects, and other financial parameters. Allow scenario modeling to be used to control risk in a volatile environment.
Second Step: Recover
After surviving the initial shock and assessing the scope of the pandemic's impact, businesses should plan for a quick restart.
- Promote cost optimization via sourcing, SG&A, enhancing productivity, and cost-of-failure, workforce, and IT reductions. This modifies the process of CapEx/OpEx plans to free up cash.
- Create a new and updated digital asset lifecycle services model in line with the new normal. One example would be to facilitate tighter collaboration among strategic suppliers, customers, and partners to get through the existing environment.
- Promote operational excellence within the redesigned processes and resource mix. Adapting to new ways of working. Adoption of the connected built environment platform, which connects key project stakeholders throughout the asset's lifecycle to reduce the cost of failure, results in savings of up to 10% of the contract value. The DigiPlace effort in Europe, for example, is working toward a European digital construction network.
- Look to develop the basic competencies needed for the new revenue and operating model. One example is the requirement to develop a future talent model that includes secure knowledge, abilities, and other distinguishing characteristics.
- Identify and build foundational capabilities required for the new revenue and operating model. An example of this includes setting a future talent model with secure knowledge, skills, and other differentiating capabilities.
- Allow for data uniformity and "platformization" for internal and external use.
Third Step: Reinvent
In the long run, EC&O firms will need to align with next-generation business models by embracing new technologies and capitalizing on their core competencies to prosper post-pandemic.
1. Put structural solutions to accommodate new ways of working in a changing normal throughout the company, supply chain partners, and customers.
2. Create and use intelligence for efficiency improvement and serious analysis on top of data and other business service platforms.
3. The capacity to compete with differentiated competence and the lowest cost to service COVID-19 will be managed. The economy will resume operations. However, to satisfy the needs of a changing world, life and business must evolve. Companies that adopt cautious short- and long-term decisions now will be better positioned to emerge better and stronger from the current crisis.
Your rivals are as low as they will ever be right now. And now is the time to focus on re-engineering your construction or engineering business.