COVID-19 had led to school closings, event cancellations, state-of-emergency declarations and other major social-distancing measures. These responses are unlike anything we’ve seen before in recent history.
The construction industry has seen a wide range of responses as well. Some cities have continued on with construction projects. Others have shut construction down completely. Here in Ontario at the DOZR head office, only essential services such as hydro, sewer, plumbing and electric work as well as a small selection of other project types are permitted to continue. It’s a slowing of the industry that is unprecedented.
No matter what the local response is, it’s clear that “business as usual” doesn’t have a place in our current reality. Contractors in essential projects are working extremely hard to continue moving in a world that seems to be shutting down around them. Supply chains have halted and social distancing is making it more difficult than ever to keep up with the demands of a construction industry that simply can’t stop.
The ability to obtain permits, have inspections done and find the materials needed to do so are affected by everything outside of the industry, so how can we keep everything moving?
Image borrowed from Field Wire.
Tech: A Contractor’s Best Friend
For many of us in the industry, this adjustment to a socially distant world largely involves figuring it out as we go. The challenge that continues to grow across every industry is the need for isolation – or at least 5 feet of distance – while somehow maintaining business operations.
Twenty – or even ten – years ago, this situation would look much different than it does today. Modern technology, in a sense, is the real saviour in the time of COVID-19.
Sourcing equipment is one part of the job that can cause contractors stress at this time. With offices closing down and people staying home from work, how do we find the equipment we need to get the job done when we can’t visit a rental company’s front desk to order?
Image borrowed from Sana.
E-commerce solutions have risen as a way to keep people going in many ways. Grocery delivery services are almost overwhelmed by the number of online orders, and Amazon has reported the need to hire almost 100,000 more workers to keep up with the demands of online shopping. The online world is booming. This is true in construction, as well.
E-commerce equipment rentals are offering a solution for businesses to keep moving forward. It may seem small – the ability to rent heavy equipment during a time of isolation and closures – but it speaks to the ability of technology to solve real problems and to keep our world moving in times of crisis.
Many of these essential services rely on the ability to get the equipment and resources needed to actually complete a project. Technology plays a big part in this as a whole. The DOZR team, for example, is able to work remotely – because of technology – to help contractors rent equipment online – through technology. As so much around us becomes shrouded in uncertainty, the decisiveness of an online connected world is something that we can all find comfort in.
Adaptation has been a key message throughout the past few weeks. We have all been forced into it and encouraged to embrace it. Technology is a huge reason why we are able to adapt so quickly.
We’re grateful for the technology that allows us to keep DOZR.com running smoothly. We are grateful for the technology that is helping our medical workers stay safe and to save lives. We are grateful for the technology that allows construction crews to complete projects that keep us safe as we practise social distancing and isolation at home.