Blayney Chronicle

How construction companies have returned post-lockdowns

How construction companies have returned post-lockdowns

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It's no secret that almost all industries have suffered through the unpredictable period of Covid-19 lockdowns. Construction companies are no different.

Construction came to a screeching halt when worksites became a close contact grey area and the supply of materials and tradesmen diminished as the world and country pivoted under new rules and lockdowns. Now, years later and at a time of more stability, construction companies have returned with strength post-lockdown.

Let's take a look at the many ways the construction industry has shown innovation in the face of change.

Consumable cabinets

Technology like the CribMaster consumables cabinet has truly revolutionised the industry. They enable the site to contain and dispense tools and equipment through a cabinet.

This device can be locked, accessible with or without a pin, and can be transported to different worksites. If there is a school being constructed, a consumables cabinet can be onsite and each day the workers tasked with a project can access a fresh mask, tools, high-vis, a hard-hat, or any other item that the construction manager chooses to add to the Cribmaster consumables cabinet.

This has significantly reduced the double-handling of items, and there are fewer people onsite managing tool distribution.

Inventory management

In years gone by, there was a dedicated role and often a department, that would be tasked with managing the inventory on-site. Now, in a post-Covid world, there is a technology that can take this off the plate of a construction team.

How it works is that every tool and piece of equipment is tracked through an RFID chip, and rather than manually logging these items in and out, the chips will be read through an RFID point to track them automatically. From here, management and the greater team can see when each item was taken from a store room, when it was returned and how many left are being used.

When tradesmen can simply grab the tools they need, work, and not have to bother with inventory management administration. This means that there is less risk of close contact and time wasted. This has the added benefit of tracking dangerous or expensive tools that are only to be used by specific professionals.

Now you can have very detailed usage reports should they be required. RFID inventory management has been the gift that keeps on giving for many project managers.

Greater opportunity for Australian business

Supply and demand have been absolutely overhauled during Covid, and the situation has not changed as the pandemic has stabilised. This has made room for Australian businesses and brands to capitalise on the circumstances and place their products and services front and centre.

Sure, Australian goods come at a premium cost when compared to offshore suppliers and manufacturers, but therein lies the opportunity for Australian manufacturers who can bridge the gap in the market and exhibit their expertise.

There will always be a reliance on offshore manufacturing, but Australian manufacturers have risen to the occasion through this period of instability, and hopefully, they can retain that market share as things return to normal.

There is also the consideration of Australian workers getting a 'fair go' with fewer international workers in the country and being available to work. The lockdown literally locked down the borders and eliminated the opportunity for skilled workers to migrate to enter Australia.

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It will be interesting to see how the construction industry continues to recover post-Covid, and what that will mean for our society. Changes are common for builders and so harnessing these circumstances into a tenable, and perhaps improved landscape will keep construction on track regardless of the external pressures.