In this month’s edition of “What’s Trending in Construction,” we continue our coverage of the COVID-19 pandemic, and how it’s been impacting our industry.
We’re five months into what appears to be one of the largest worldwide health emergencies in history. While there isn’t necessarily an end in sight, we are seeing construction managers across the country and the world work to make the most of the current situation.
Here are some articles worth reading about:
Cash and the Coronavirus: 4 Ways Contractors can Collect and Borrow
ConstructionDive (@ConstructDive) has recently shared an article meant to help construction contractors alleviate some of the financial burdens that have come as a result of the Coronavirus. As we all know, there has been a massive slowdown in business since the start of March, and it’s left many companies wondering how they will be able to stay afloat.
The author of the article covers four different ways contractors can impact their cash flow and their bottom line right now so that they can protect their assets and livelihood. Tips, like prioritizing payment collections and building stronger relationships with suppliers, can help ensure that contractors will better be able to pay the bills as they await projects to get up and running again.
Contractors, Army Corps of Engineers Transforming Buildings into Makeshift Hospitals
Also from ConstructionDive (@ConstructDive), is an article highlighting some of the more positive construction projects that are currently popping up around the country. As the need for more space to treat Coronavirus patients arises, contractors and the Army Corps of Engineers are teaming up to repurpose existing buildings as field hospitals.
By transforming convention centers and other similar spaces, they’re making a major difference in our country’s efforts to flatten the curve. Buildings located in some of the hardest hit and population-dense areas in the United States are now providing local medical facilities some much-needed relief by offering additional space for medical staff and patients. It seems to be a similar approach to China’s efforts to expand healthcare facilities earlier this year when they had experienced the initial wave of COVID-19 cases.
Paycheck Protection Loans Preserve Construction Jobs as Project COVID-19 Cancellations Rise
ForConstructionPros.com (@4ConstructnPros) shared their thoughts on the results of a survey conducted by the Associated General Contractors of America, an organization for which we here at Gadzoom are proud members and supporters. The survey asked contractors about federal loan funding and the impact it’s made on their businesses.
Overall, just over 44% of survey respondents reported that they had received loan funds under the new federal Paycheck Protection Program, allowing them to rehire or retain their employees at least for another pay cycle. With that news, however, also comes the worry of an unstable future. 67% of survey participants mentioned encountering project delays or disruptions as a direct result of the current economic climate, and that number may continue to rise in the coming months.
Asian Market can Still Absorb Construction Cost Pressures
In an interview with Glenn Lutz, Asia CEO of engineering and consulting firm Arcadis, CNBC (@CNBC) dives into the ways Asian construction companies are dealing with COVID-19 and the cost pressures associated with the outbreak. The recent pandemic erupted at a point when much of the continent was in the middle of a construction boom. Companies had more business than ever before, and countries like China had entered the age of modernization.
Now with the extra challenges contractors need to navigate, it’s taking some innovation to maintain the pre-virus momentum. Lutz says that we can expect to see the adoption of more pre-manufactured and modular builds as a result, which could very well find its way into American construction trends in the near future as well.
OSHA Issues COVID-19 Return-to-Work Guidance for Retail, Construction, Manufacturing and Package Delivery Industries
For our last article, we turn to a piece by Occupational Health & Safety (@OccHealthSafety), which covered OSHA’s release of return-to-work guidelines for the construction industry, amongst others. They represent common guidance for workers as their employers prepare to resume operations during the post-coronavirus era as states around the country are weighing the decision on whether or not to reopen the economy.
Tips for construction personnel include avoiding physical contact with other coworkers and increasing training on how to properly use personal protective equipment on the job. The goal is to slowly get Americans back to work without negatively affecting the progress made by social distancing and other counter COVID-19 efforts thus far.
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