The Economic Benefit of The South African Construction Industry in 2014 (Part 3 of 3)

Posted by MDA Projects on Wednesday, March 12, 2014 with 1 comment
There are numerous challenges with which the construction industry is faced. If not adequately addressed these could have a serious negative impact on the future of the industry and South Africa in general. Each construction project is unique and has different key criteria that must be addressed and overcome in order for it to be considered a success. One of the major issues hampering industry advancement is workforce training. Those that have been in the industry for a length of time have witnessed the gradual reduction in the skill level of all participants in the industry.

Other challenges include:

• Failure of government to deliver on its infrastructure spending programme in a managed way
• Changes in market sentiment, both locally and abroad
• Availability of fast internet and cheap data storage
• Failure of the industry to implement just and fair equity employment
• Failure to implement sustainable building projects
• Continued loss of skilled labour and graduates to   competing and ‘less challenging’ industries
• Global competition and its impact on the erosion of margins

The way forward

At MDA, we believe future project managers in South Africa will be expected to deliver quality projects with less money and less resources. This will be compounded by a steady increase in professional competition. Still, we are confident that while the overall volume of work appears stagnant for the near future, there are sufficient projects, new and repeat business, for true project management providers. In order to take advantage of the opportunities that will present themselves project management companies will need to continuously adapt processes. Part of this will include the provision of a solutions driven mindset to retain highest order confidence by the authorities and provide a value added service of international quality. By following these principles the local construction industry can begin to regain its pre 2010 World Cup image.

Automation, innovation, infrastructure

One of the methods to achieve this is by process automation. This will significantly save costs by reducing time and effort wasted on activities that have little or no impact on project quality. Moreover, with the projected decrease in private investment in large-scale projects and a government focus on infrastructure, project management companies need to reassess their skill set. They also need to invest in training to equip managers for future developments both in South Africa and beyond our borders. Without a doubt the construction industry and project management professionals in particular face difficult challenges in the next couple of years. Notwithstanding the serious challenges highlighted in Part 1 and Part 2, in a subdued economic environment, South Africa needs innovative thinking to pull up the country by the boot strings.

Part 1 of 3
Part 2 of 3