Nationwide Study Shows Construction Optimism Up

Most construction owners are optimistic about the strength of the upcoming peak season and their business’s ability to get back on track, the study says. The insurance company Nationwide recently conducted an online survey with 200 middle-market construction companies — defined as those with 25-500 employees, $10 million-$500 million in revenue or 20-plus fleet vehicles — about how they were affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and their outlook for 2021.

The Positives

According to the survey, construction owners believe the economy and their company’s performance will increasingly improve over the next year:

  • In the next six months, 48% believe the economy will improve and 67% believe their revenue will improve.
  • In the next 12 months, 60% believe the economy will improve and 75% believe their revenue will improve.

How Construction Companies were Affected by COVID-19

The survey put into perspective the impact of the pandemic on construction companies in 2020. The survey found:

  • 70% of construction owners were negatively impacted by the pandemic, experiencing the biggest hits to total revenue (52%), their company’s ability to bid on new projects (45%) and their workforce/employee headcount (37%).
  • The pandemic also emphasized the need for increased planning, as more than 1-in-5 business owners lacked plans to help their businesses operate through economic uncertainty:
    • 27% didn’t have proper plans in place to successfully navigate project site shutdowns/re-openings.
    • 24% didn’t have a business plan to account for a potential recession.
    • 23% didn’t have enough employees or subcontractors to meet project demand.