Is It Time for Construction Companies to Rethink Business Travel?

Rethink Business Travel

Business travel for construction companies has changed in 2020. We couldn’t hop on a flight or drop-in anywhere without masking, social distancing, vaccination-proving, and concerns. The pandemic will eventually be over but there are threats of other contagious diseases for 2022. Virtual meetings and Zooms – things we did because we had to in 2020 – may have been the clue it’s time to change many ways construction companies work.

We need to rethink how we conduct business travel.

Digitizing Travel Technology for Construction Companies

All construction professionals can’t work virtually. You might be able to 3D-design a project, but you can’t rig the scaffolding or inspect the drywall without using your hands.

Travel expenses are higher for most construction companies because you can’t plan for unpredictabilities. You pay more when you don’t have time to plan ahead. Without the luxury of advanced planning, “Airline fares are typically higher for (workers in the construction industry),” said one travel professional. Construction companies pay 20% more for business travel than other industries.

Construction travel involves entering information into spreadsheets plus travel expense tracking and reporting by auditors and accounting. The average is 13.6 hours per trip just to process and document travel. Digitizing business travel can save time and money.

How To Leverage Technology for Business Travel

Digitizing…means eliminating things like paperwork and manual data entry…using online platforms that modernize and automate travel processes to help you get the most out of the travel dollars you spend.Industry Dive

Yes, we’re singing the software song again. You can DIY (do-it-yourself) or retain an agency to manage it for you. Leveraging travel technology for construction companies should include:

  • Allowing managers to book for employees or employees to book for themselves, even from the field
  • Benchmarks
  • Data from customizable, real-time reports so you can negotiate greater savings with hotels/airlines
  • Detailed information about unused tickets/travel credits, etc.
  • Device-friendly/easy use and easy/efficient implementation
  • Measurable ROI (return on investment)
  • Powerful dashboards, analytics/reporting
  • Flag employees that need travel policy attention/training
  • Request-a-call option to connect with a travel agent without “hold” time
  • Risk-management tools
  • Visibility to see how many employees are traveling at any time
  • Vital information in one place: job costing based on travel cost reports

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U.S. Construction Industry Expected to Expand in 2015

Recent data on construction employment suggests that improvements will continue and that the U.S. construction industry will expand even further in 2015.

construction workersIncreases in construction employment were identified in more than 250 metropolitan areas around the country between December 2013 and December 2014, according to data from the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC).

The AGC also reported that up to 80 percent of construction companies and contractors indicate that they intend to hire more employees in the coming year.

Increases in both private and public sector construction projects are fueling the boosts in construction employment. Favorable weather patterns in different parts of the country also contributed to the increase in construction projects and associated employment.

The AGC data showed that Texas was the most prolific area for new construction jobs in the year between December 2013 and December 2014. In the Dallas-Plano-Irving area, for example, more than 15,000 construction jobs were added. The Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown area of Texas saw an increase of nearly 15,000 jobs.

Other areas of the country that saw significant construction job growth were the Chicago, Joliet and Naperville areas of Illinois, with 11,000 jobs added, and the Seattle, Bellevue and Everett areas of Washington, with 8,700 new jobs.

The AGC also noted that construction employment decreased in 43 metropolitan areas and remained stagnant in another 39 cities.

Despite an overall positive outlook for the construction industry in the near term, industry sources warn that political gridlock or other issues that prevent government spending on infrastructure repairs and improvements could restrict the upward trend in construction employment growth.

Construction Monitor provides contractors, business owners, developers and other professionals with the most accurate and up-to-date information on housing starts, building permits and developments in the construction industry. Contact us today for more information on current trends in the U.S. construction industry.

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Crane Companies Are Looking to New Avenues of Business to Weather Economic Downturn

crane companiesLike many other segments of the construction industry, crane companies have been hit hard by the recent decline in building. While prospects for these companies are looking up, work isn’t always found in the traditional large building projects. The crane’s versatility and wide variety of uses has been keeping crane companies busy in some unexpected ways. Continue reading Crane Companies Are Looking to New Avenues of Business to Weather Economic Downturn