Redefining the UK Construction Sector | Kloeckner Metals UK


The pandemic has affected communities globally. At a time, such as this, construction is a vital function in any economy as it contributes around 7% to the UK GDP. From building hospitals to donating life-saving equipment, the construction sector has played a critical role in the UK. However, many sites have been affected and worked at lower capacity or shut down entirely during the outbreak. To safeguard the sector, building off-site in a controlled factory setting together with digitisation makes even more sense in the post-pandemic world. Manufacturing off-site will offer benefits as it will require fewer people on-site, better build quality and quicker speed of completion. Digitalisation too allows for greater agility and remote collaboration.

Moving from on-site to off-site

Many companies had to shut down operations due to their inability to operate safely. Likewise, many workers have headed home, and there has been uncertainty on the supply of materials during the pandemic. The system of on-site production has many operational and supply dependencies; making it trickier to adapt during times of crisis. Off-site offers opportunities to streamline the construction process and improve overall efficiency.

Off-site can offer standardisation allowing greater control for the construction sector. Further readdressing workforce to off-site factory production can better cater to social distancing guidelines and improve health and safety.

Off-site in Numbers:

  • Off-site construction is proven to be up to six months quicker
  • Off-site construction can reduce material costs by 20%
  • Off-site construction can reduce time on site by 30%


Construction is one of the biggest sectors in the UK but has been slow to adopt new technology. New technologies in the construction sector will not only improve productivity but also reduce project delays. Furthermore, digital technologies have the potential to enhance the quality of buildings and improve safety, working conditions and environmental compatibility. Digitisation additionally gives access to better data allowing sustainability goals to be better met.

Models such as BIM across the building lifecycle offer a dynamic database, capable of tracking the building throughout the entire lifecycle, improving overall construction performance. According to the world economic forum digitalisation will result in a saving of up to $1.2 trillion in the next ten years in non-residential construction alone.

However, adoption is slower because of the lack of understanding of the benefits it offers. But also, the initial cost and time, lack of senior management buy-in and also legacy systems can cause issues in terms of digital adoption. Ultimately, digital technologies will realise their full potential in the construction only if widely adopted as an industry norm.

Digital Supply Chain Management

Many construction firms have been faced with supply chain issues as a result of the pandemic. Optimisation of supply chain and partnering with the right supply chain partner can go a long way. In the future, supply chains can be better organised by incorporating digital technology, allowing teams to work better together remotely.

Kloeckner Metals offer the following digital supply chain solutions:

ONLINE SHOP: Allows buyers to buy metal anywhere anytime on their schedule.

EDI Connection: The EDI connection allows for automated exchange of all commercial information, increasing efficiency and eliminating manual processes.

Kloeckner Contract Platform: manage your Kloeckner contracts online: see open and closed contracts, check remaining quantities, call off material quickly and easily.

Kloeckner Assistant: A new Artificial Intelligence Application was launched to completely automate Kloeckner’s order processing regardless of how an RFQ or order is received.  A truly game changing application that will turn each customer into a digital customer.

To find out how our digital solution could help with your business get in touch with our digital experts

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