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Navigating the future is no easy task, which is why Teletrac Navman launched an in-depth survey and report on where construction fleets are today and what they think will impact their businesses in the near-term. The 2017 Telematics Benchmark Survey: Global Construction Edition gives great insight into construction market trends, like top business challenges, economic optimism, staff shortages and technology disruption. With the global market expected to grow to $15.5 trillion worldwide by 2030, it’s critical that construction fleets start considering how to adjust to new market realities and what they need to do to take advantage of new opportunities and advancements that will continue to re-shape the industry.

Market optimism remains high

It’s always a sign that business is good when overall investments are on the rise. The report found more than 90 percent of companies plan to invest in their business in the next year by upgrading fleets, finding, retaining and developing talent, and/or integrating new technologies and systems. Additionally, more than half of organisations plan to increase their fleet size and add equipment as a result of greater demand. Investments like these are critical to success and a true advantage to any business as the construction segment grows.

Technology investments lead to more efficiencies

With the increase in demand, and new service expectations, comes pressure to do more with fewer resources. That’s why more companies are turning to new and emerging technologies to help them maintain business profitability and improve margins. For example, telematics and features like GPS fleet tracking help fleets improve efficiency and reduce fuel consumption – with half of organisations using telematics seeing up to 40 percent reduction in fuel costs.

Technology has truly become a competitive advantage, and organisations at least owe it to themselves to explore the wide range of technologies available to them that can help them grow their bottom line.

Safety management through technology

Businesses today are under pressure to increase profits, but maintaining the safety of workers is equally critical (no matter the size of the employee base). Nearly one-third of those surveyed listed driver/operator safety as a top concern for construction companies. There is no room for error when it comes to safety, and that’s why many organisations now turn to technology to help curb the threat of workplace injury. Modern technologies can provide insight into everything from workers’ alertness to workers’ on-the-job performance, both of which often result in fewer safety violations and accidents. As technologies advance, safety measures will as well.

Industry solving for skilled staff shortages

Talent acquisition and retention is a top business challenge for a quarter of survey respondents. However, there are a number of different ways the industry is trying to solve the labor shortage. Most common tactics are increasing pay and offering better benefits, as well as developing more educational and training programs to help workers upskill. The increase of freelance work is also abetting the talent shortage.

Proliferation of emerging tech

While there has certainly been a lot of excitement around the idea of autonomous and self-driving vehicles, it looks as though there is a little ways to go before that is a top of mind emerging technology. The technologies upon which organisations have their finger on the pulse today are fatigue monitoring, machine vision technology, drones and big data analytics.

Rachel Trindade is a Global Vice President of Marketing at Teletrac Navman.

Rachel is responsible for leading the company's global marketing efforts, including brand strategy, anticipating market trends and demand generation.