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Tackling the construction labor crisis: Why tech is the answer

FAE Contractor 1

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The construction industry is facing many hurdles, and topping that list is the issue of labor shortages. This dilemma is amplified by an aging workforce; one in four construction workers is over the age of 55, setting the stage for 25% of the current workforce to retire within the next decade.

Add to this the lack of new talent entering the field, and you have the perfect storm of challenges for staffing and knowledge transfer. As the labor issue shows no sign of declining in the near future, finding an alternative solution is critical to sustain productivity.

This is where technology steps in; more than just a tool, technology is proving to be a vital pathway for training the workforce and making each worker more productive.

Redefining the standards of productivity and safety with tech

In short, technology enables construction teams to achieve more and ensures the quality of their work for less errors during the build. This efficiency not only boosts productivity but also upskills the labor and keeps projects on schedule.

Why is this significant?

Rework can consume up to 30% of all onsite activities, significantly draining time and resources.

Innovative tech solutions such as augmented reality (AR), virtual reality, building information modeling (BIM), 3D printing, robotics and automation, are already making an impact in the sector.

Leading the way is our Engineering Grade AR™ solution, the Atom™ – the world’s only Engineering Grade AR headset designed and certified for construction. It enables workers to achieve accuracy from the outset, eliminating rework and freeing up valuable labor resources.

Less rework means less activity & less risk

Cutting out rework also relieves the pressure on onsite teams constantly facing tight deadlines, minimizing the chances of rushed, error-prone work that could lead to unsafe conditions, putting the already limited workforce at risk.

Combating labor shortages in engineering & management

Labor shortages aren't just an onsite issue, they’re affecting engineers and managerial teams in the office as well. The prevalence of rework not only increases tasks onsite but burdens the rest of the team with a higher workload, requiring additional staff.

For example, due to rework, quality assurance engineers have to review systems multiple times, foremen are responsible for overseeing the corrective work, and quantity surveyors must identify errors, adjust pricing, and potentially file for compensation.

Simply put, reducing the extra rework can also significantly cut down on these associated costs.

By leveraging tech and fostering a culture of efficiency and accuracy, we can maximize the output of existing workers and simplify administrative processes.

The advantages of wearables and BIM

Wearable tech like our Engineering Grade AR headset, the Atom, offers unique advantages in a construction setting when compared to other technologies, notably in terms of mobility and ease of use.

The Atom’s spatial computing capabilities empower construction teams by overlaying 3D BIM holograms onto the build site, enabling verification and validation of installations in real-time.

Our advanced data and analytics platform empowers builders to accurately gauge the progress of a project and identify potential delays or reworks in real-time. The digital Building Information Modeling (BIM) model, delivered through the headset, enhances efficiency and precision for construction teams on-site. By aligning real-world construction with the BIM model, we reduce errors in the field, ultimately improving overall labor efficiency.

Another strong point of the XYZ Reality offering is that it’s available as a fully managed service.

This includes field application engineers (FAE) and planners, who support the tech’s deployment onsite – seamlessly integrating it with your existing systems. The on-site team also provides training, effectively bridging any existing skill gaps and allowing the builder to reap the tech’s full benefits.

At XYZ Reality, our mission is to help our customers to Build Right First Time, On Time. By providing the tools to accomplish this mission, we enable the customer to complete their project under budget and increase the morale of onsite personnel by minimizing rework.

Enticing the next generation into construction through technology

Attracting the younger, tech-savvy, generation to the construction industry is vital for the sector’s long-term sustainability. The younger generation has grown up in a tech-rich environment, setting an expectation that their chosen professions will be equally tech-forward.

It's crucial to speak their language and meet their expectations for a modern workplace by highlighting construction tech advancements. They expect immediacy and efficiency in their work environments – interactive, engaging processes – and want routine and labor-intensive tasks to be automated.

By embracing the latest technology, the construction industry can become a compelling choice for the next generation, ensuring a more innovative and sustainable future for the sector.

Overcoming the challenge of tech implementation

While introducing new technologies into the construction sector has its challenges – it has long been thought of as a sector resistant to change – we at XYZ Reality have had a different experience.

We’ve found that when we demonstrate the Atom and its benefits, it’s consistently met with enthusiasm.

Once users experience the Atom’s capabilities, its remarkable impact on efficiency and cross-trade collaboration — and its seamless integration with BIM technologies — they quickly grasp the transformative power of accomplishing more with fewer resources.

A shift towards efficiency, safety, and better outcomes

There's no question that technology is redefining the future of construction by addressing a range of critical industry issues, including today’s labor shortages.

Innovative solutions like Engineering Grade AR are spearheading this sector transformation, elevating productivity, quality, and safety onsite, while simultaneously revolutionizing efficiency in the office.

We are excited to see how tech develops over the next few years and will continue to push the boundaries with innovative solutions to benefit all the construction sector.

To learn more about XYZ's Engineering Grade AR solution, reach out to our experts. Or book a demo today.



John Haddick