October 27, 2021

OnSiteIQ’s Key Takeaways From ULI Chicago

Nicholas Muir

Nick Muir and Joel Abramson from OnSiteIQ attended the ULI conference in Chicago, IL from October 11th – 14th and spent time experiencing a regathering of the real estate and construction industries best and brightest. Between the breakout sessions, speakers, and networking we gathered many insights and data as our company continues to be the leader in construction intelligence and construction photo and video documentation.

Specific to our industry we identified three key takeaways from the conference that we look to use in our day-to-day operations as a company.

Insight #1: Construction Technology is Here to Stay

A new impetus and scope for the adoption of property technology is the need to better assess and allocate investments, while still understanding and managing properties. The general census of the meeting said that despite potential storm clouds ahead of labor shortage and material shortages, survey results from the Emerging Trends in Real Estate 2022 report, produced jointly by ULI and PwC, show strong optimism in the industry in the coming year.

This bodes well for OnSiteIQ, the leader in construction photo and documentation, which has taken great strides in providing developers and owners with tools that allow real-time assessments of their project’s progress through construction photo and video documentation.

Insight #2: The Next Normal

The next key takeaway of ULI is what the industry can expect in “the next normal.”

Eighty-four percent of survey respondents to the previously identified Emerging Trend in Real Estate Report expect 2022 to be better than 2021, exceeding the 79 percent who held a similar view about the coming year in 2019. It remains to be seen whether that buoyancy is a false positive bounce-back fueled by the massive federal stimulus pumped into the U.S. economy.

However, potential headwinds still loom regarding issues such as inflation, labor shortage, supply-chain disruption, geopolitics, and potential tax changes. When considering that immigration is down and retirement numbers are up, the labor shortage is expected to continue.

What is clear is that as the country enters its “next normal,” the real estate and construction industries will never be the same as they were before COVID-19. In particular, the desire for flexibility and convenience will drive change in real estate not only in 2022 but well into the next decade. The desire to work anywhere and live anywhere, while still being plugged into work remotely, could transform buildings, markets, construction schedules, and investment decisions. Not only are employers demanding their employees back to the office, but employees are generally looking forward to returning to the office.

The survey results and trends also identified a change that is coming, that is a reversal of trends in years prior. There is the optimism of a retail revolution, field by the droves of millennials relocating to the suburbs. The pandemic motivated many younger people to reconsider their lifestyle, and adapt to the new “shelter at home” calls to action.

Hospitality Will Make a Comeback

Hospitality was hit very hard during 2020 and into 2021. The good news, according to OnSiteIQ’s Nick Muir, is that things are “progressively and more rapidly reopening, especially in the limited-service segment.”

Within the hospitality investment realm, there is clear evidence that optimism is sustainable. For example, transaction activity has come roaring back and surpassed 2019 levels. That rise in activity levels is more than just pent-up demand because the capital is coming in from institutions and private investors. In fact, many people have woken up to the fact that hospitality needs to be a part of investment portfolios.

How OnSiteIQ Plays a Role

When considering the emergence of construction technology, the societal rebound from COVID-19, and the reimagination of hospitality, OnSiteIQ expects to be a staple in the technological integration of construction projects in 2022 and beyond.

Furthermore, we are launching a new dashboard in 2021 that gives owners and developers a real-time assessment of project performance while flagging potential and incoming delays.

For those looking to thoughtfully and meticulously monitor their portfolios, even from abroad, there is no better company to partner with than OnSiteIQ. You can request a free demo to see if OnSideIQ is right for you.