Construction Week: Leaders in Construction UAE Summit 2019

10th Leaders in Construction UAE Summit 2019
September 17, 2019, Dubai

Challenges, opportunities, insights and candid conversations kept the 200+ senior construction professionals engaged at the Construction Week 10th Leaders in Construction UAE Summit 2019.

The Summit featured keynote address by Eng Anwaar Al Shimmari, Director of Design and Chief Innovation Officer, Ministry of Infrastructure and Development. The economic overview and state of the construction industry was presented by Deloitte and 4 panel sessions focused on:

– Controlling Costs When Cash is King
– Potential for Profit – Identifying Diversification Opportunities
– Attracting Accomplished Leaders to Drive Expansion
– Payments, Insolvency and Dispute Resolution

The industry slowdown, persistent challenges related to cash flows and talent shortage, need for technology adoption and diversification and mitigating disputes were discussed and debated by industry leaders at the event.

Key takeaways from the Leaders in Construction UAE Summit 2019:

# Innovation Strategy has shifted to focus on human and their needs – Green Power, Mobility, and Technology to serve humankind, Future skills, Quality of health, Living and life, exploration

# AI has impact on construction, however, both transport and logistics and building materials are lower on the AI index with regards to dedicated investments to develop this technology for creating greater impact either in assets, usage or labour.

#AI comes at a cost, it is important to undertake adequate research, awareness and understanding.

#Smart cities is first about people, second about construction and only later does IT come.  Construction is important part of every single element of smart city – schools, hospitals, infrastructure, houses, everything. Construction needs to be in harmony with all sectors and collaborate to build iconic developments.

# Current global construction industry challenges are an opportunity to collaborate with all stakeholders of a project from concept level, revisit cost control mechanisms and evaluate estimation processes.

#Strategy to keep businesses viable is to increase efficiency of the company’s core business and look out for innovative projects to be disruptive in the market.

#Right time to diversify geographically, invest in knowledge, simplify complex processes and sharpen skills of in-house talent.

#Strategic alliances are the way forward, collaboration is better than competition for the economy.  The shift is expected to be towards contractor led collaboration focused projects.

# Communication with employees at all levels in different formats is essential to drive them towards the common goal of the project.

# Create and build a brand to tell a compelling story that will attract and retain quality talent. Success rate of recruitment is retention.

# Mitigating disputes is a shared responsibility of client and contractor. Contractors must accept projects only that they can deliver. Need for a transparent and collaborative delivery model.

S&T Interiors and Contracting was represented at the event by Ali Malas, CEO of Dubai and Arundhati Seigell, Head Corporate Communications.