Four years after the National Institute of Building Sciences Off-Site Construction Council (OSCC) conducted an initial survey to gain an understanding of how the U.S. construction sector is using off-site construction techniques and technologies, the council issued a follow-up survey to see how the industry’s use has changed. Last week, the OSCC released the report compiling the 2018 industry survey results during Building Innovation 2019: The National Institute of Building Sciences Seventh Annual Conference and Expo.
Key findings from the Report of the Results of 2018 Off-Site Construction Industry Survey include:
- Most respondents (87.62%) indicated they had utilized off-site fabricated components to some degree over the past 12 months, while 81.63% expected to utilize off-site construction more often or the same amount in the next 12 months.
- The participants (who could select multiple categories) are using off-site elements for commercial construction, industrial, healthcare, education, multi-family, hospitality, single-family and data center construction.
- Respondents indicated that although off-site construction requires moderately or significantly higher levels of engagement, the increased integration and collaboration throughout the delivery process can result in higher quality and reduced changes throughout construction.
- The respondents identified the primary benefit of off-site construction to be a reduced overall project schedule, and specifically, the duration of the construction phase. Other realized benefits included quality of the product and cost effectiveness.
- Construction culture and late design changes were the most significant barriers recognized.
- The survey also pinpointed that the construction manager or general contractor is the one most often to implement off-site construction.
- The survey indicates that additional education is needed for current decision makers and owners, who have the potential to demand the use of off-site construction.
The OSCC plans to distribute more industry-based surveys to obtain additional data on the state of prefabrication in the construction sector.
A total of 205 participants from around the country responded to the 2018 survey. The respondents came from across the building industry, representing the diversity of stakeholders involved in the decision making and implementation of off-site construction. They included construction management and general contractors, engineers, trade contractors, architects and owners/developers.