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Artificial Intelligence in Construction

Discover how AI has the potential to revolutionise building processes.
A construction worker wearing a hard hat while working on a computer. Generative ai

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has the potential to revolutionise building processes. The construction industry is keen to take advantage of this opportunity, and 80% of construction professionals say mobile technology is a top priority. However, despite the advantages AI can offer, it still has the ability to present issues and alter risk profiles.  

AI opportunities within the construction industry

AI provides the opportunity to improve construction programmes and processes by leveraging data from supply chain resources, weather conditions, map technology, and energy origins. The construction industry is increasingly adopting a digital approach to improve efficiency by reducing costs and increasing safety. Predictive models can anticipate overrun costs by analysing subcontractor work, project timelines, work quality, or project manager track records. It is predicted by 2035, AI has the potential to increase profits in the construction industry by 71%.  

AI can also be useful for helping construction projects to satisfy environmental targets. To improve the sustainability of operations, AI can be tasked to increase output while using less resources. Additionally, machine learning can enable automatic identification of scenarios where less resources, energy, or space is required for certain tasks and operations to be completed.  

The internet of things (IoT) can provide ubiquitous connectivity by linking a diverse range of personal devices, building service systems, and control interfaces. By 2026, there will be over 64 billion IoT devices installed around the world. Allowing free communication between multiple devices can facilitate autonomous, self-learning operations that improve design builds and safety. 

AI challenges within the construction industry 

However, the introduction of AI into the construction industry is not without risks. Some AI systems, such as generative AI, will only be as reliable and useful as the information and data provided to it. Therefore, it is important to investigate how AI systems gather data and determine if it is from a sufficiently broad range of sources. AI responses should also be reviewed in line with regulatory changes to ensure responses do not violate updated laws. Additionally, it is crucial that systems in place effectively find the most relevant information and summarise their contents appropriately.  

Installing AI into construction practices and processes can alter risk profiles – particularly from a cyber perspective. It is critical that all systems are secured and protected from bad actors. As more devices are integrated into each project, the surface area for attack from threats like ransomware also increases. It is crucial this is mitigated to prevent breaches and hacks. Managing access and user permissions, as well as periodical reviews of network usage reports can help organisations keep on top of this.

For further discussion about the advantages and risks AI systems could have for your business, please contact your Marsh representative.