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Home - News - Machine control key solution to labor crisis: Study

Machine control key solution to labor crisis: Study

June 26, 2023

A recent survey conducted by Topcon Positioning Systems among 1,000 decision-makers in European construction firms revealed that 77 percent of respondents consider machine control to be a crucial factor in attracting workers. However, despite its perceived importance, the use of machine control on construction projects across Europe remains limited.

According to the survey, machine control is currently employed in only 34 percent of construction projects on average, with the majority of respondents (72 percent) using the technology on less than half of their projects. Only 1 percent of respondents reported using machine control without exception.

The survey respondents identified several barriers to the wider adoption of machine control in the construction industry. The top barriers included:

  1. Lack of governmental initiatives/support for technology adoption (27%): Many decision-makers feel that there is a lack of support or incentives from government bodies to encourage the integration of machine control technology.
  2. Lack of buy-in from senior decision makers (26%): Senior decision-makers within construction firms may not fully understand the benefits or be convinced of the value of machine control, leading to a lack of support for its adoption.
  3. Time and resources required for training/adoption (25%): Implementing machine control technology requires training employees and allocating resources for the adoption process, which can be perceived as time-consuming and resource-intensive.
  4. Incompatibility with current machinery/technology (25%): Some construction firms may already have existing machinery or technology that is not compatible with machine control systems, making integration more challenging.
  5. Lack of mandates/regulation for technology adoption (24%): Without regulations or mandates in place to enforce the use of machine control technology, some firms may be less motivated to invest in it.
  6. Fear of new technology (24%): Resistance to change and a fear of new technology can prevent decision-makers from embracing machine control and exploring its potential benefits.
  7. Upfront investment in technology (22%): Implementing machine control technology requires an initial investment, which some firms may find financially burdensome or risky.

These survey findings highlight the need for greater awareness, support, and education regarding the benefits of machine control technology in the construction industry. Addressing the identified barriers, such as government initiatives, senior-level buy-in, and training resources, can help promote the wider adoption of machine control and close the skills gap in the European construction sector.