Majority of construction pros believe the industry must adopt cutting edge tech

Turner & Townsend’s 2024 UAE market intelligence report reveals 97% of survey respondents integrating digital tools into their projects

Turner & Townsend, a leading global professional services company in the construction industry, has released its 2024 UAE market intelligence report, based on a survey of construction professionals, that shows the industry must adopt strategic initiatives, including integrating cutting-edge technologies and embedding sustainability practices, across the supply chain to counteract labour shortages and shrinking contractor pools. These factors will support growth and innovation in the sector, according to the company’s survey.

Digital transformation is set to play a pivotal role in the industry’s advancement in the region, with 97% of survey respondents integrating digital tools into their projects, albeit some at a moderate level. This trend is set to continue with technologies like Building Information Modelling (BIM), now a standard practice in projects demanding high precision and efficiency.

Sustainability also remains a key focus, with 75% of industry professionals reporting that their companies have outlined strategies to achieve Net Zero emissions. The strategic adaptation of procurement methods highlighted in the survey, where 44% of respondents experienced single-stage procurement routes, reflects the industry’s responsiveness to market dynamics.

Drawing insights from across the UAE construction industry, the report also highlights the resilient nature of the UAE market, which continues to thrive and attract investment, despite challenges including ongoing supply chain constraints.

The report further predicts growth for the UAE construction market, emphasising sustainability and innovation-led projects. Public-private partnerships are highlighted as crucial, particularly in significant infrastructural developments and housing projects that align with the government’s vision for economic diversification and sustainable urban development.

Commenting on the report, Adam Ralph, Country Manager – Dubai, UAE, Turner & Townsend, said: “With the UAE positioned as a top emerging market with its economic plan to attract investors, there’s optimism for increased market activity. Despite facing challenges like labour shortages, shrinking contractor pools, and ongoing supply chain constraints, the industry remains resilient and is on a trajectory of growth and innovation.

“In-country construction is rebounding strongly, with a promising pipeline of projects and public-private partnerships addressing affordable housing needs.

“Yet, while some of our survey respondents expressed optimism, others showed caution, highlighting the importance of adaptive strategies. Strategic adaptation, sustainability and digital transformation will be vital for ensuring long-term success and resilience in this dynamic market.”

The report is available here:

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