McKinsey believes the sector is finally heading for revolution
However, as Zak Garner-Purkis writes in Construction News, even the lead authors of McKinsey’s new (June) construction report were surprised by the findings. The scale and speed of the disruption predicted by the global consultant is unprecedented.
Solving the offsite conundrum
It’s Not 1%
Speed of Delivery
Pandemics Positive Impact
Both experts believe that the impact of the coronavirus pandemic is likely to continue to increase the importance of speed.
Nine shifts to radically change the way construction is done
Product-based approach: In the future, an increasing share of structures and surrounding services will be delivered and marketed as standardised “products”.
Specialisation: To improve their margins and levels of differentiation, companies will start to specialise in target niches and segments, such as luxury single-family housing, multi-storey residential buildings, hospitals or processing plants, in which they can build competitive advantages.
Value-chain control and integration with industrial-grade supply chains: Companies will move to own or control important activities along the value chain, such as design and engineering, select-component manufacturing, supply-chain management, and on-site assembly.
Consolidation: Growing needs for specialisation and investments in innovation—including the use of new materials, digitalisation, technology and facilities, and human resources—will require significantly larger scale than is common today.
Customer-centricity and branding: With productisation – that is, turning development, engineering, or construction services into easy-to-market products or solutions—and specialisation in the industry, having a compelling brand that represents an organisation’s distinctive attributes and values will take on added importance.
Investment in technology and facilities: Productisation implies a need to build off-site factories, which requires investments in plants, manufacturing machinery and equipment, such as robotics to automate manufacturing, and technology.
Investment in human resources: Innovation, digitalisation, value-chain control, technology use, and specialisation in end-use segments all increase the importance of developing and retaining in-house expertise, which will compel players to invest more in human resources.
Internationalisation: Greater standardisation will lower the barriers to operating across geographies. As scale becomes increasingly important to gaining competitive advantages, players will increase their global footprints.
Sustainability: While sustainability is an important decision factor already, we are only at the very beginning of an increasingly rapid development.
We’re Already Underway – “Sustainably”
Part of creating sustainable, energy efficient, sustainable buildings involves keeping pace with the IoT (Internet of Things). Incorporating this into design detail is an important part of what we offer. Modular Off-site MMC SIP & Timber Frame structures provide excellent flexibility to do this. Working with architects, planners and environmentalists to satisfy all types of design, we are already well on the way to implementing what McKinsey are predicting. Additionally, ‘Volumetric’ and ‘flat pack’ modular building solutions can ‘tread lightly on the earth’ and we adapt our business innovations and developments to your environmental needs.
For example, standard designs from our very low rise ‘SolidLox’ brand enable us to provide buildings that do not require massive foundations and which can avoid harming tree roots while delivering on time and within budget. Such projects require a systematic, solution driven approach which brings discipline to the process, sharing information and communications. Applying DfMA (Design for Manufacture & Assembly) defines the process of taking these to the next level; a welcome change in the overall approach to project management and development – and to those who just ‘talk about it’!
Partnering for Modular Progress
All of this entails a shift in thinking to that already practiced by established ‘Off-Site’ MMC manufacturers. It can be quickly and easily incorporated into procedures and processes of building and development. Better still, you can make partnering arrangements with such manufacturers to gain all round benefits.
Greater Speed, Accuracy, Quality and Lower Costs
Greater collaborative ‘partnering’ between architects, builders and manufacturers will deliver these. The greater speed, accuracy and quality that can result from manufacturing components in a dry, controlled factory environment, together with the ability tom incorporate (yet to be invented) ‘Smart Ware’ gives home builders perhaps the only way of achieving this, together with improved on-site build quality AND controlling costs.
While resistance to the change to DfMA has been the norm, the wish of most UK Builders to deliver excellent customer service and top notch homes is now driving an increasing number to choose Off-Site for their developments. Also, as ‘OffSite Hub” note, architects and designers are moving toward DfMA, something we have been encouraging for over 20 years. The emergence of LA Developers will only speed up this process.
Easy Timber Frame
To assist them in doing so our “Easy Timber Frame “ now offers standard size modular timber frame elements for them to use as a design base, cutting down on technical design and engineering to produce win-win results. This virtually provides any housebuilder or architect with their own bespoke design factory facility.