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The year ahead: Digitization, Site Safety, Sexual Harassment

As we move through fall into the holiday season, expectations for 2020 become more prominent in our thinking. We’ve seen the job predictions. Outlook for New York City construction is good. So the question is, are we up to the new challenges facing our local construction industry in the months ahead?

Several years back, McKinsey Consultants published a very interesting report titled “Imagining construction’s digital future.” The report challenged the construction industry head-on by suggesting that it was time for change. It pointed to poor productivity, delayed projects, low margins, increased competition, and poor business processes as driving forces for change. The article said the construction industry is ripe for disruption. Large projects typically take longer to finish and can be as much as 80 percent over budget.

The construction sector has been slow to adopt process and technology innovations. Reports indicate the industry is among the least digitized.

My point is, and I recommend our members take a look at how we do business. Can we do better within our individual companies to sharpen results? In 2020 investigate more digitization and the positive effect it can have on your profit. It can only benefit your bottom line.

In other matters, the compliance deadline for Local Law 196 of 2017 is upon us. It was already extended once so there is no reason to miss it. The Law requires workers at job sites that designate a Construction Superintendent, Site Safety Coordinator or Site Safety Manager must receive 30 hours of site safety training by December 1, 2019 and an additional 10 hours of training by September 1, 2020. Supervisors need 62 hours of training by the December 1, 2019 deadline. If you haven’t already addressed this, I strongly suggest you comply. Your association has already devoted a training meeting to this issue.

Another requirement that everyone must comply with is about sexual harassment. You must have had a policy for this in place a year ago, in October 2018, and all your staff must have had training by this past October 2019.

I would like to remind everyone that our annual Holiday Party will be held Tuesday, December 10th at the North Hempstead Country Club. This is one of our most anticipated social events of the year. I hope you can make it. It’s a wonderful opportunity to meet and greet your peers in a fun, relaxing atmosphere during “the most wonderful time of the year.” Please get your reservations in early.

I wish you all a happy and safe holiday season.

— John

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