Recent Articles

  • Nonresidential Spending Retains Momentum in September

    Key Takeaways

    • Nonresidential construction spending, which totaled $767.1 billion on a seasonally adjusted annual rate for September, fell 0.3% but remains historically elevated and increased 8.9% on a year-ago basis
    • August’s estimate was revised almost a full percent higher from $762.7 billion to $769.1 billion, the highest level in the history of the series.
    • “Unlike previous instances of rapid construction growth, this one is led by a neatly balanced combination of private and public spending growth.”

    Press Release from Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc.

    WASHINGTON, Nov. 1— National nonresidential construction spending fell 0.3 percent in September but remains historically elevated, according to an Associated Builders and Contractors analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data released today. Total nonresidential spending stood at $767.1 billion on a seasonally adjusted, annualized rate in September, an increase of 8.9 percent on a year-ago basis.

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  • Construction Adds 23,000 Jobs in September

    According to data released last month by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the national construction industry added 23,000 net new jobs in September, following 23,000 in August, 18,000 in July, 13,000 in June and 29,000 in May.

    Press Release from Associated Builders and Contractors, Inc (ABC)

    Full release

    Construction Industry Adds 23,000 Jobs in September, Says ABC

    WASHINGTON, Oct. 5—The U.S. construction industry added 23,000 net new positions in September, according to an Associated Builders and Contractors analysis of data released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

    During the last 12 months, the industry has added 315,000 net new jobs, an increase of 4.5 percent. Nonresidential construction employment expanded by 18,600 net jobs on a monthly basis, while the residential sector added just 4,400 net positions.

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  • Construction Will Hold Steady in 2019, Says Dodge

    Article written by Alisa Zevin and appears on enr.com

    U.S. construction starts will hold steady in 2019 after a modest 3% uptick in 2018, according to the 2019 Dodge Construction Outlook. Starts are expected to hit $808.3 billion, only 0.2% higher than 2018’s $806.8 billion.

    “Over the past three years, the expansion for the U.S. construction industry has shown deceleration in its rate of growth, a pattern that typically takes place as an expansion matures,” says Robert A. Murray, chief economist at Dodge Data & Analytics.

    For the non-residential sector side, the volume of commercial work is expected to drop 3%, with rising vacancy rates in the coming year slightly dampening construction, says Murray, who provided the 2019 market update in National Harbor, Md., on Oct. 25.

    Retail construction continues to decline, largely due to the shift to online shopping, while hotel construction will slow following a 10% boost in 2018. Office and manufacturing buildings, however, will see small increases, at 1% and 2%, respectively. Institutional building, such as educational and healthcare structures, will rise 3%.

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  • 6 Ways Contractors Can Save Money with Technology

    Article written by Andy Holtmann and appears on the Viewpoint blog

    Save money on your construction projects with these six cost-saving methods that use technology.

    If there’s one thing all contractors are interested in, it’s cutting costs. Construction projects all too easily run over budget and behind schedule, and in an industry with thin profit margins, that can be a big problem. Luckily, the construction industry is beginning to innovate by introducing new technologies which help increase productivity, reduce costs and provide sound ROI.

    Find out how your construction contracting business can benefit from today’s popular and up-and-coming technology tools with these cost saving ideas for construction companies.

    1. Improve Project Planning and Execution with BIM

    Building information modeling (BIM) is growing increasingly popular in construction, and for good reason. This 3D modeling tool establishes one master design for everyone to work from, all the way from the planning stages of a project through execution. BIM can even help building owners with maintenance down the road.

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  • How to Hire Good People During the Labor Shortage

    Article written by Andy Holtmann and appears on the Viewpoint blog

    Practical tips for hiring construction workers who will stick around, plus advice for employee retention

    We’ve been discussing the construction labor shortage here at Surveyor for a while now. Many contractors are struggling to find skilled workers, which is especially challenging during a time when there’s no shortage of work to do. Construction also faces high turnover rates, so even when contractors do find good workers, retaining them isn’t always easy.

    So how do you make your company stand out to attract good workers? We’ve compiled a list of tips for hiring and keeping the best construction employees.

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  • Best Practices for Construction Document Management

    Article written by Andy Holtmann and appears on the Viewpoint blog

    Find out how to centralize your construction document management system and make it easily accessible to your teams.

    Document management might not sound glamorous, but effective document management is critical to the success of construction projects. As contractors move from pen and paper to digital, paperless operating environments, they have found a variety of solutions for document management available to them, some more sophisticated than others.

    Still, many contractors use a mix of paper and digital documents, and even if they’ve gone fully digital, they may rely on a mix of software applications. A survey of the Viewpoint community found many contractors still rely on basic digital tools like spreadsheets to manage their projects. (Last year’s Construction Technology Report from JBKnowledge reported similar findings).

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  • The Kahua Network will improve construction cost visibility and efficiency, thus enabling Prologis to make data driven decisions and drive new development advantages for their global clients.

    San Francisco, CA and Alpharetta, GA – September 18, 2018 – Prologis, the global leader in logistics real estate, announced an agreement with Kahua, the provider of the world’s leading collaborative network for real estate and construction project management, whereby Prologis will manage projects across its global portfolio on The Kahua Network.

    Prologis is a global provider of logistics and industrial development services, operating in 19 countries across 4 continents in the Americas, Europe and Asia. The agreement with Kahua reflects a commitment to investment in new technology that streamlines the development process and optimizes the construction of new projects.

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  • 10 Benefits You’re Missing Out On If You’re Not Operating in the Cloud

    In today’s construction environment, your projects demand real-time access to data and process workflows in order to keep them moving and profitable. That’s why more and more contractors are moving their operations and organizational management to the cloud.

    So, why should your construction company consider migrating to a cloud-based, subscription software operating environment sooner rather than later? Here are 10 reasons:

    1. Access Data AnyWhere, Any Time

    With web-based software from Viewpoint, you’re no longer tied to a physical workstation in the office when you need to access or enter data. Securely use your laptop, tablet device — even smart phones right in the field to get the information you need, when you need it.

    2. Work From One Set of Data

    A fully-integrated, cloud ERP platform ensures that data is standardized across your office, the field and all your project teams. No more wasted time translating data from one software program to another or trying to manage bolted-together systems.

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  • How Spectrum Business Intelligence Helps Mitigate Financial Risk

    W. Soule & Co. is a multi-trade industrial contracting firm specializing in process piping, custom metal fabrication, millwright services and HVAC services. The company has been around for more than 70 years, with five locations in Michigan (headquartered in Kalamazoo, Mich.) and one location in Lakeland, Fla. W. Soule’s work is primarily in the food/beverage, life sciences, chemical and paper industries.

    Study Summary

    CHALLENGES:

    • Desire to achieve greater organizational efficiency
    • Need to gain more insight into projects
    • No method to pull more relevant reports/data analytics needed

    SOLUTION:

    • Became early adopter of Spectrum Business Intelligence
    • Provided customizable report building & data analysis tools
    • Simple to use with instant drag & drop data analysis

    RESULTS/ROI:

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