While 2022 got off to a strong start for transportation and construction, challenges ultimately arrived in the form of rising costs, continued supply chain disruptions, and labor shortages.
Indeed, each new year in any industry brings with it a healthy mix of hopes and goals, challenges and changes. Some variations are small and quite manageable, while others are longer lasting, and ripple through the industry with troublesome persistence.
However 2022 ultimately shakes out for companies in transportation and construction, the industry will continue to grow and innovate in 2023. Clients will demand more options, have higher expectations, and the market will continue to get more competitive.
Modular design, green building, design technology, remote worksites, and a shrinking workforce are trends that will both continue and evolve in 2023 and beyond. Artificial intelligence, connectivity, renewable energy, and alternative materials will also have a dramatic impact on construction and transport in the immediate and long-term future—with some already incorporated into workplaces, while others remain on the precipice.
While many of those trends will affect the industry as a whole in time, it’s the micro details that we tend to focus on within our day-to-day operations. And to that end, we’re looking ahead at 2023 with a keen eye towards advocacy and opportunity.
“I’m looking forward to the challenge of making sure our current and new NBIS insureds utilize the risk management team and all the tools offered to them through NBIS,” emphasized Keith Adolf, AVP Risk Management. “The recommendations we give on a visit are only to help run a safer, more efficient company and limit your exposure. The team consists of industry professionals from the crane & rigging, heavy-haul, and concrete pump fields.”
Adolf is particularly focused on NCCCO (National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators) and its program upgrades. “They’ve been changing all of their programs in an effort to go electronic with their written practical tests,” he explained. “The process will be rolled out in the near future and local unions and training facilities that train and give practical and written examinations should attend these CCO meetings and get in front of what is coming down the road.”
Also coming soon is one of the biggest showcases in the world for any crane & rigging professional—CONEXPO 2023—and Adolf can’t stress the importance of this event enough. “It never fails to show the connection between technology and the crane industry, and how set up of a mobile crane can be done faster, safer, and more efficiently with technology,” he noted. “CONEXPO is simply the latest and greatest in crane manufacturing technology.”
A Robust Return
Bill Hebron, Specialized Transportation Program Manager at NBIS, agreed with Adolf. “The last event had unprecedented challenges with the beginning of Covid, limited vendor participation, and the abrupt shutdown,” he pointed out. “This CONEXPO is looking like it could be as robust as the pre-Covid years.”
Hebron also pointed to Breakbulk (Americas) 2023 as an event to plan for. “We noticed significant growth in this year’s BreakBulk compared to last year,” he said, “and I expect the participation to continue to grow—and I’m optimistic that in a few short years, BreakBulk will be at pre-Covid attendance.”
On leadership side, Hebron was recently appointed to the SC&R (Specialized Carriers & Rigging Association) Transportation Safety Committee, and is looking forward to progress he can help to cultivate for both SC&RA members as well as the greater industry. “We have already voiced our support and opposition to proposed changes to regulations that affect our industry.”
Kyle Rask, NBIS Concrete Pumping Program Manager, is keeping operator certification on his radar for 2023. “I’m really excited for the focus on additional certification for the concrete pump industries,” he maintained, “and I’m looking forward to working with the industry and ACPA members on the NCCCO developments.”