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Technology helps solve the affordable crisis in US cities




US cities are in the midst of an affordable crisis. Between May 2020 and May 2021, home prices showed the largest annual rise in more than 20 years, with construction material prices rising 24%. Rents have risen faster than the lessor’s income for 20 years. Construction needs to play an important role in solving these pressing issues, but is the industry ready?

The construction industry is a $ 10 trillion global industry and employs more than 200 million people worldwide. However, despite its size and importance, the industry’s annual labor productivity has increased by only 0.1% each year since 1947.

Since 1947, we have witnessed amazing advances in technology and science. Industries such as agriculture, manufacturing and retail can dramatically increase productivity by improving yields with improved bioengineering and introducing state-of-the-art logistics to bring affordable consumer goods to the mass market. Did. Labor productivity in these industries increased more than eight times between 1947 and 2010, compared to one in the construction industry.

With these advances and innovations, why do millions of US construction workers have to rely on manual pen and paper processes for important parts of their work?

We are significantly underinvesting in technologies that can help us save us from the crisis we are facing. Historically, entrepreneurs, engineers and investors haven’t spent time understanding the specific needs and workflows of the construction industry.

Today, more than $ 800 billion is spent annually on commercial construction, only a small portion of which is spent on construction technology. In recent years, the construction industry has been ranked the lowest of all industries in terms of technology spending, with revenues averaging 7.2% across industries, not to mention banks and other industries 3.3. It is just 1.5% below%.

Most of that annual spending is spent on construction materials over $ 250 billion annually. And they are just getting more expensive. Materials make up about one-third of project costs, but most contractors have to rely on manual workarounds created long before smartphones were invented to order materials.

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As a result, both field and office workers are burdened and spend too much valuable time on paperwork, material tracking, and error correction.

The office team receives hundreds, if not thousands, of material requests from the field, all in different formats, including requests marked with markers on pizza boxes. Convert handwritten requests to purchase orders manually sent to suppliers via email, spreadsheets, PDFs, re-enter order information into the accounting system, tag with suppliers and field teams by phone, and place orders You need to know the status.

Unfortunately, all that confusion often leads to mistakes, lost opportunities to buy at the best price, and project delays.

The turmoil continues for accounting teams who don’t have an easy way to match invoices and know if they’re paying the right amount, not to mention tracking rebates and payment terms across different vendors.

On the other hand, foremen who spend more valuable time than ever on the pressure of the current workforce often spend less than 30% of what they are best at, building. Without an easy way to select the exact material you need and track it to delivery, it’s too common for the wrong material to appear at the wrong time, causing the project timeline to go off track and mass. Will be wasted.

Technology makes ordering and managing materials much easier, allowing field and office workers to focus on other important tasks. It also helps contractors catch common errors before derailing a project and build it in a more environmentally sustainable way.

Buildings are more than bricks and mortar. They are hospitals, schools, homes and small businesses. The buildings that surround us literally shape our lives. Our community needs places where we need places to meet, learn, play, and heal. Imagine what we rely on to create a vibrant community, if it didn’t cost money to fix it, or if it was quick to build.

A new generation of workers who grew up with their mobile phones in their pockets are now joining the construction industry and looking forward to change. Repairing a broken supply chain can make construction faster, cheaper, and more efficient.

We advance and solve the most urgent needs of society, from the construction of affordable homes to the restoration of national infrastructure, to make cities more affordable and accessible to all. I can.




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