Now that 2016 is over the focus shifts to 2017 at least as far as Africa’s construction industry is concerned.
In 2016 according to Deloitte most Africa countries spent a lot of money in the construction related matter and in 2017 we expect an economic growth of over 5% in the construction industry and that’s according to the last Deloitte report on Africa’s construction industry report 2016.
Despite the fact that we expect the industry has a positive forecast, a feeling of uncertainty continues to loom over the industry. This is after Construction Review interviewed some of Key decision makers in the industry.
Here are the top five trends to watch in 2017:
1. Collaborative project delivery methods will become more popular
The days of design-bid-build domination might be winding down, as experts expect collaborative approaches to become more common for projects.
Design-build, public-private partnerships and integrated project delivery are three of the most
2. Skilled labor shortage will continue to plague the industry
This has one of the trend that has been affecting Africa’s construction industry for a while but no doubt that it will still hit the industry come 2017.
Its recently when Construction Review featured an article about the lack of skilled labor hence putting the continents’ contractors into another stress to use extra coins to import labor from other countries.
This trend is lingering after a huge chunk of the construction workforce were forced to leave the industry for other jobs during the recession when their work disappeared.
Aside from the long-term implications of a dwindling labor pool, firms are feeling the immediate impacts of the worker shortage, as it can lead to higher costs and longer project schedules.
3. Modular construction will gain a stronger foothold in the market
In the early year modular construction was not a big deal in Africa and with time most of the countries across the continent have started embracing it and we believe that will continue in 2017.
Offsite construction, also called modular or prefab, isn’t new to the industry. However, experts predict the building method will grow in 2017 as quality, time and labor concerns make alternatives to traditional construction methods more attractive.
4. Construction costs will rise due to materials and labour
One of the most common concerns industry experts cited for 2017 is the escalating cost of doing business. With rising material and labor costs, firms will likely struggle to maintain their margins in the coming year.
Contractors have been expecting an impending bump in material costs after several years of relatively flat growth. The Associated Builders and Contractors called the most recent decline in material prices “the calm before the storm.”
On the labor side, the skilled-worker shortage has led to employers raising average pay higher than the national average. Experts say that increasing workforce costs — which include recruiting and wage costs for current employees — will cut into contractors’ bottom lines.