London, United Kingdom – February 2020 – Invennt, the leading specialist management consultancy for construction, today announced the findings of seminal research published in a whitepaper titled, Is Construction Ready for Industry 4.0. Surveying hundreds of leaders in British and Irish construction businesses, the whitepaper seeks to answer why the construction industry has been slower than other sectors to embrace the emerging technologies and business models of the fourth industrial revolution. In addition to uncovering the barriers to adoption, the paper reveals the priorities of businesses concerning industry 4.0 and make recommendations for the future.
The research found that nearly a third (31%) of businesses report excessive costs or unclear return on investment as a significant barrier, with a further fifth (19%) citing a lack of skills and knowledge as a major factor. Most businesses consider flexible working alongside tracking and monitoring as the most important benefit of industry 4.0 technology and are positive about its potential, while recognising that legacy issues prevent the sector from embracing it.
Tim Fitch, director and co-founder, Invennt, commented: “the technology underpinning the fourth industrial revolution is central to the success of construction businesses in a digitised industry that is increasingly under threat from disruptive new entrants with enviable financial backing. If incumbents are to weather this changing landscape they, need to act now to protect their competitive position.”
In the current climate, companies must consider not if, but how they will implement these technologies and business models, and boards must be fully committed, to realise the benefits they offer. However, all of this is contingent on confronting the residual issues holding the industry back. These range from thin margins arising from a lack of meaningful differentiation in the sector to organisational structures that stymie innovation and experimentation.
Culturally, the historic focus on value engineering – whilst yielding noteworthy incremental improvements – has stymied what management theorists term ‘architectural innovation,’ or in common parlance radical innovation that pairs new technical competencies with a new business model. So looking to the future, new technology will continue to be a key determinant of corporate performance but it must be married with a root-and-branch rethinking of traditional business models to overcome existing issues and find new ways to create value.
A full link to the full report is here.
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Invennt is the UK’s leading specialist construction Business Consultancy. The business was founded by Tim Fitch and Brendan Morahan to help the construction industry get greater value from their investments. The company’s services include business strategy development, productivity & operational improvement, business development and marketing, collaboration and R&D tax credit claims.