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Tech can help solve US cities’ affordability crisis – TechCrunch

US cities are in the midst of an affordable crisis. Between May 2020 and May 2021, home prices Maximum annual increase Over 20 years and Building material price It increased by 24%.Rents rose faster than the lessor’s income 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.But despite its size and importance, the industry Annual labor productivity Since 1947, it has increased by only 0.1% each year.

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 have significantly under-invested 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.Construction in recent years Rank at the bottom Of all industries as a percentage of revenue, technology spending is only 1.5%, well below the industry average of 3.3%, not to mention 7.2% in banks and other industries.

Most of that annual spending (more than $ 250 billion a year) is spent on construction materials.And they are just getting Higher.. Materials make up about one-third of the cost of a project, but most contractors need to rely on manual workarounds created long before smartphones were invented to order materials.

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.

Foreman — that time is more valuable than it is now Labor squeeze — Often, what we do best is less than 30% of the time we spend 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 they derail the project and help us 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 them — we need a place to meet, learn, play, and heal. Imagine if what we rely on to create a vibrant community is cheap to fix or fast 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.

From the construction of affordable homes to the restoration of national infrastructure, we can advance and solve the most urgent needs of society, making cities more affordable and accessible to everyone.

Tech can help solve US cities’ affordability crisis – TechCrunch Source link Tech can help solve US cities’ affordability crisis – TechCrunch

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