Lean construction + Mobile Tech offers a powerful business strategy for subcontractors
The demand for construction is currently on an upward trend, and it isn’t expected to decline anytime soon. However, it is important to analyze how well the construction industry is meeting this demand. According to the United States Bureau of Labor statistics, they aren’t meeting it as well as they used to.
Since the 1960’s, trends have shown that productivity within the construction industry has been declining. One reason for the decline lies in the shortage of skilled workers in the construction industry. With unskilled workers performing the job, it’s no wonder that productivity isn’t at its fullest. The decline in skilled workers is mostly due to the baby boomer generation retiring, leaving millions of construction jobs unfilled. To further the problem, the younger generation doesn’t have much of interest in filling those jobs. Fortunately, there is a simple solution. Subcontractors can increase the skillset of its current workforce and attract new workers by implementing revolutionary business practices and technologies such as lean construction and mobile software.
What is lean construction?
Lean construction is a productivity-boosting business practice used to reduce waste, prevent delays, and ultimately raise profits and productivity. Construction workers are not tapping into their full labor potential causing a waste of time, money, and skills. Lean construction fixes this problem by helping employees tap into their full potential so that they can be twice as productive. According to the Alexandria Engineering Journal, lean construction follows five key principals to achieve this.
1. Specify value– Identify each activity that generates value for your end product.
2. Identify the value stream- Eliminate anything and everything that doesn’t produce value. If something is going wrong, stop production and correct it as quickly as possible.
3. Flow- Supervise the entire supply chain to ensure that the process flows smoothly and generates value consistently.
4. Pull- Use pull instead of push. Pull refers to producing precisely what your client wants when they want it. You also must be prepared to change course if the customer changes their mind.
5. Perfection- Deliver a product on time and on the budget that meets and/or exceeds every expectation. Don’t settle for defects, mistakes, or inadequate materials. This step is only possible if the first four steps are followed as well.
Implementing lean construction principles is only part of the solution though. Utilizing a powerful construction management platform such as eSUB that’s workflows support lean construction principles will help you accelerate your company’s growth to the absolute fullest. If work ever slows down there is no need to worry, eSUB helps subcontractors stem declines by generating higher profit margins on every project. Mobile construction technology also helps you do less re-work and more work with the same number of people. This translates into more money, less time and greater growth!
It is clear that combining the powerful business strategy of lean construction and a mobile technology platform such as eSUB, is the best way to promote growth. Now it is up to the construction industry to implement them. Lean construction and mobile technology are the way of the future. Once subcontractors realize and utilize this strategy, they will be on the path to success.