The construction industry has long been known for its reliance on manual labour and mechanical technologies. However, as the world becomes more digitalised, companies in this sector need to integrate more advanced technologies into their processes to increase their efficiency, productivity, and profitability. Cloud computing is becoming an essential tool for the construction industry and is helping companies to unlock their digital potential. 

What is cloud computing? 

Cloud computing refers to the provision of IT infrastructure and platform services to deliver a flexible, scalable, and on-demand IT environment. It is now the dominant model for delivering and maintaining enterprise IT resources, including hardware, software, platforms, and tools for application developers. Key segments for the construction sector include cloud services, specifically software as a service (SaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), and infrastructure as a service (IaaS). 

According to GlobalData forecasts, the global cloud computing industry was worth $421.7bn in 2019. By 2026, it will have grown at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16% to $1,158.8bn. In the construction sector alone, cloud computing revenues will reach $44.6bn by 2026, up from $14.8bn in 2019. 

Construction has been slow to digitalise 

The construction industry has been generally slow to digitalise and adopt new technologies. However, as costs decrease, digitalisation will increase. The key barriers to the uptake of more advanced technologies such as cloud computing are the high upfront investment costs and complex technical requirements. Despite this, the benefits of disruptive cloud computing for the industry in the long term are becoming too significant to ignore. 

Cloud computing can enhance all project stages 

Companies should invest in cloud computing measures across all stages of a construction project, from design to site operations. In particular, the use of cloud platforms for project management has significantly improved productivity across the entire project timeline, streamlining communication between stakeholders, mitigating risks, decreasing budgets, and helping to meet schedules. 

One of the significant benefits of cloud computing in the construction industry is the enhanced utilisation of emerging technologies and innovations that continue to transform the industry. Drones, robotics, virtual reality, 3D printing, and artificial intelligence are some of the technologies that are becoming increasingly important in construction. The use of cloud computing makes it easier to integrate these technologies and leverage their benefits in a project. 

An essential tool for digital transformation 

Cloud computing has become a vital tool in the construction industry’s digital transformation journey. Its disruptive benefits, including increased efficiency, productivity, and profitability, are becoming too substantial to ignore. Companies that invest in cloud computing measures across all stages of their projects stand to benefit significantly from the technology.  

As the industry continues to embrace digitalisation, cloud computing will undoubtedly become an increasingly essential part of the construction landscape.