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5 trends that are shaping the future of offsite construction

Off-site manufacturing construction has changed the way the world builds and responds to challenges of infrastructure development. India has moved into top gear in an effort to meet the growing infrastructural, residential and commercial needs of the people. The future of manufacturing is shifting off-site to expedite the change. While the construction industry is still hesitant to embrace changes in traditional working methods, here are trends that industry leaders can look at.

Rising demands for housing
The high and ever increasing demand for housing is a challenge for contractors and builders. The Increasing number of projects they need to handle is putting a strain on their ability to manage multiple sites spread across a wide area. Finding labor to handle the projects becomes difficult. Modular construction takes 40-60% labor off a site making contractors join hands with manufacturers of prefabs.
Need for speeding up construction and reducing cost

The need for greater productivity has driven the industry towards off site manufacturing in an effort ot speed up work and reduce costly work stoppages. Reduction in work hours of laborers adds up to further gains as pay outs are reduced.

Need for collaboration
The construction industry relies more heavily on early collaboration to start work early and to carry it on smoothly. Conceptualizing and designing together using BIM results in more accuracy at implementation stages and reduces need for changes and alterations that cost time and money.

Growing need for offsite construction
The various factors like volume of work, need for speed and accuracy, concern for standardization of work, and concern for cost control are all pushing contractors, builders and project managers to opt for offsite construction to complete projects.

Early mover advantage
Early adapters have demonstrated that offsite construction can integrate old designs with new methods. One of the major concerns that prevented builders from embracing offsite was the idea that established brand styles would be lost in moving to the new way to build. Offsite modules have proved their adaptability and flexibility in producing units that match and fit in universally.

What the trends foretell
These trends are an indication to industry experts that there is a need in India for shifting in numbers to the new way of building. The challenge remains to convince architects, builders and contractors to make the change.

Need of the hour
Undertaking a process of awareness creation and education has become necessary to generate interest in the new method of construction. To understand how offsite construction works and what benefits it can offer there is a need for showcasing of completed projects using offsite construction and visits to manufacturing units of prefabs to understand the basics of modular construction.

The scene is set for the construction industry to make a shift from traditional to modern methods. The rate at which the change over happens depends on how experts and leaders project and explain these trends. Showcasing completed projects will result in more and more builders taking advantage of offsite construction.


Advantages and barriers to using offsite manufacturing construction

Fundamentally, Offsite Manufacturing Construction is the manufacturing or preassembly of the various components of the buildings before they are transported to the construction site to be installed in their final locations. Offsite construction is based on the principles of efficiency and quality and they employ manufacturing philosophy which is conducive to an environment for innovation.

Prefabrication and modularization are two methods in which offsite construction can be achieved. Prefabrication covers the offsite materials, parts and subassemblies as well as volumetric units or modules. Modular construction greatly reduces the complexity and allows for customization. Three dimensional units are manufactured in a controlled factory setting and are transported onsite where they are finally assembled.

offsite manufacturing construction

The factory is usually at a fixed location that has good transport links. It provides a controlled environment unaffected by climate or other such factors.


  • Quality- consistency in the process following in a controlled factory environment directly corresponds to improved quality and therefore predictable product behavior.
  • Customer satisfaction – improved quality results in fewer defects and hence greater customer satisfaction.
  • Technical – Higher levels of thermal or acoustic performance are achieved due to the high level of quality assurance processes employed as well as the investment in research and development.


  • Time – Since all the ‘modules’ are prefabricated, the overall construction time is reduced.
  • Waste – the factory environment results in tighter control of materials and the material usage is optimized. The factory production of construction elements can have much lower resource inputs and reduced waste outputs.
  • Flexibility – a customized approach ensured a level of variations that can be done to suit customer requirements.


  • Improved work environment – The entire construction culture has been revolutionized because the factory environment greatly improves the working conditions for workers.
  • Environment – efficient use of raw materials directly corresponds to an environment friendly process as opposed to traditional construction where there is a lot of waste involved.

Offsite construction can offer significant financial benefits through higher speed of construction and early completion of the project. However there are a number of barriers too that need to be addressed before actually implementing such a construction method. Let’s explore a few of them.

Barriers in offsite construction
There are very few barriers or challenges in the implementation of offsite construction. Resistance to change is a very common phenomenon and offsite construction is a very different skillet that gives emphasis on holistic knowledge and an improved understanding of project planning and scheduling. The skill sets required are different. Higher capital investment is another key aspect to be considered. Offsite construction requires a strong business leadership combined with operational knowledge. Offsite construction also has a completely different business model too as it is more closely associated with manufacturing and draws its principles in quality and efficiency and reduction of wastes along with cost benefits.

Moving construction from an open site to a controlled factory environment is definitely the future of construction!