Saturday, Dec 12th, downtown Helsinki. I sit down in the barbershop’s chair. Despite the masks, I started chatting with the barber. He told me he considers starting university studies to move to a new industry. ”Which industry are you interested in? Have you considered the construction industry?” He hadn’t but a short chat about it made it an option for him. I said to him there’ll be available jobs also in the future, you earn well, and the industry will keep developing, as it is transforming into a technology industry. Walking home, I wondered how it is sometimes such small incidents that changes our paths. Maybe this person makes his choice to enter our industry. I felt comfortable making this recommendation, because the best days of the construction industry are still ahead of us, in Finland and globally. Our role as the problem solver for the society and the environment will significantly grow in the upcoming years.
We have entered a phase where work, solutions and business actions against the climate change are financially rewarded in an increasingly plentiful manner. This also applies to developing productivity and the ability for scalable services. We builders did quite well in our industry amongst ourselves, without external know-how or globalization. But this won’t be the case in the future. Builders, just like anyone else, can’t make significant changes alone. We need skilled people from various industries to join, also on an international level, to develop better solutions together. The role of new technologies, especially software, grows rapidly in our industry. In addition, new energy solutions and building materials, as well as ways to standardize technical solutions and activities grow in prevalence. This development is sped up with global investments that we can count in billions.
At Fira, we have persistently strived towards and invested in modularization and digitalization for a number of years. It hasn’t always been easy. We’ve made errors and paid their price, but we’ve also reached some great results. Someone may wonder, why not just build, or why can’t we find some other way to do business? Is there business for us outside the conventional, commercial construction world? For us at Fira, and for our partners, it is a great opportunity and honor to be able to build, to develop methods for how to build, and to turn this know-how into libraries, services, products and software code, making it a growing business.
The challenges of this development come from the fact that there is no silver bullet. No application alone is a solution, because this is about improving the entire system. The question is, what does construction 2.0 look like, and how can we gradually and continuously make it move forward?
During this year, Fira has moved forward faster than ever before. Construction projects have been successful, forecasts have been realized, technology has been a part of our everyday work, and the interaction between various professionals has been at a great level. And it keeps getting better.
The heart of our development is the hard core of construction, that is, the Fira production system. It contains the design, the used components and the construction site systems. The year has coupled us with important parties that share with us the same vision on the future of construction. During the new year, we will keep moving forward with our partners at a fast pace not only in Finland but also internationally. We’ll tell you more when the time is right.
I thank everyone for the past year and wish you all a very Merry Christmas!
Be well, and let’s keep in touch!