Alternative Work Styles

Virtual Inspections and Observations, When Site Visits are not Feasible

Requires Good Communication and Reliable Technology

Published 4-29-2020

All of the protocols general contractors are putting in place to keep their workers safe during the ongoing pandemic—rearranging shifts, monitoring temperatures, separating crews on site—will not move a project to completion without the dozens of inspections, site visits, and construction observation events that take place during the course of construction. But with many owners, architects, and inspectors unable to visit job sites due to stay-at-home mandates, construction progress can stall. One solution is the virtual site visit, opening the door to remote construction observations.

Construction Environment Roundtable

Current State of the Economy, Construction Market, Procurement, Liability

Published 4-8-2020

To keep apprised of the dynamics in the current construction environment, Vermeulens, a professional services firm focused on construction cost estimation and pre-construction cost control, has scheduled twice-weekly virtual roundtable discussions with industry leaders in Central and East Coast regions to identify ongoing trends, influencing factors, construction administration issues, and the market outlook in the construction industry. Economic indicators are in flux, and while employment in construction seemed to have avoided the drop seen in other sectors through mid-March, a survey conducted by the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) shows that conditions are worsening, with 55 percent of the 1,600 repondents nationwide reporting they had been directed to hault work on at least one project, and 27 percent have furloughed or terminated construction workers. The next federal jobs report, which will be issued at the end of April, will provide a truer picture, says James Vermeulen, managing principal of Vermeulens.

Selecting Furniture to Optimize Functionality and Efficiency of Evolving Workplaces

Desks, Tables, and Seating Options Impact Organizations and their Employees

Published 3-18-2020

As workplace environments continually change to accommodate the diversity of today’s employee workstyles, choosing the most appropriate furniture is an increasingly important aspect of the design process. While furniture selection may have been an afterthought in the past—a decision to be considered only after a building was constructed or renovated—many organizations now realize the value of putting furniture selection on the front burner. Furniture can impact workplace change initiatives by empowering employees, improving employee satisfaction and productivity, enhancing collaboration, and improving overall organizational efficiencies. The selection and placement of furniture—from standing desks, height-adjustable tables, room dividers, storage space, and myriad seating options—are now being aligned with an organization’s objectives.