The heavy construction industry is changing rapidly, and the recent CON-EXPO equipment show in Las Vegas highlighted several key trends. With new movements emerging and technology advancing, it’s important for businesses to stay ahead of the curve to provide the best quality products and services for their clients. In this article, we’ll explore the most significant trends we saw at the convention and discuss how your company can prepare for these changes.

Electric Equipment as an Alternative Solution

The heavy equipment and machinery industry is increasingly focusing on sustainability, and one area of interest is the move towards electric equipment as an alternative solution to diesel-powered machines.

In the USA, the construction industry is largely reliant on diesel, with 98% of its energy being diesel-powered, according to the Diesel Technology Forum. However, global initiatives are aiming for net zero carbon emissions by 2050, and the heavy construction industry is taking steps to reduce its impact on the environment.

One option for reducing the industry’s impact is to modify diesel engines, but this approach has limitations. Hydrogen technology is also being explored, but it is still in the early stages of development.

A major key to changing power systems will be to maintain the existing infrastructure for maintenance.  Wherever possible, new technologies should be able to be maintained in existing repair shops and garages, and not require substantial investment in this area. 

Electric equipment is gaining popularity as a viable alternative with several benefits. Compared to diesel machines, electric equipment produces lower noise levels, offers an instant response, and has fewer components, which leads to easier maintenance. Additionally, electric equipment has zero emissions and has been shown to perform on par with diesel machines.

The electric movement started in compact equipment, such as skid steers and mini excavators, but has now expanded to include larger construction equipment. While there are downsides to electric equipment, such as limited run-time and charging time, these areas are improving rapidly.

Government entities are leading the way in the adoption of zero-emission vehicles, and the heavy construction industry is beginning to follow suit. The global off-highway electric vehicle market size is expected to reach $42 billion by 2030, according to Grand View Research. This trend toward electric equipment will continue, and businesses within the industry must prepare for these changes to stay ahead.

Predictive Maintenance

The heavy machinery industry is expected to continue its adoption of predictive maintenance this year, using sensors and data analytics to anticipate and prevent equipment failures. According to a report published by Next Move Strategy Consulting, the global predictive maintenance market is expected to generate $64.25 billion by 2030. This rising trend is made possible by the increasing connectivity of heavy machinery through the Internet of Things (IoT), which enables companies to collect and analyze data on equipment performance and usage.

By using predictive maintenance, companies can proactively schedule maintenance or repairs, reducing downtime and the costs associated with reactive maintenance. Predictive maintenance helps to determine the life cycle of equipment by monitoring its performance and usage over time. This allows companies to make informed decisions about when to repair or replace equipment, rather than relying on reactive maintenance or fixed intervals.

Predictive maintenance also helps to optimize equipment uptime and reduce the overall cost of ownership. By analyzing equipment data, companies can predict when maintenance is needed and schedule it at a convenient time, minimizing the impact on operations. This approach also helps identify equipment issues early, preventing costly breakdowns and repairs.

Another benefit of this technology is real-time tracking, which can assist as a deterrent to theft, and for tracking should theft occur.

Equipment Subscriptions/Long-Term Rentals (Product as a Service)

In recent years, the heavy machinery industry has seen a growing trend toward Product as a Service (PaaS). Customers are increasingly seeking better experiences and outcomes from their heavy equipment but are often hesitant to pay the costs associated with purchasing new machinery. This has led to rising demand for rental services, which allow customers to pay for only what they need and gain additional support through value-added services such as equipment servicing and maintenance. These services can help prevent downtime and extend the lifespan of equipment, reducing the overall cost of ownership.

PaaS also benefits equipment providers by providing a recurring revenue stream and allowing them to collect valuable usage data from customers. This data can be used to better understand customer needs and offer more targeted and effective equipment and services. By leveraging this data, equipment providers will bring new products to market that better meet customer needs and provide a competitive advantage in the market.

Overall, PaaS offers a more flexible and affordable approach to heavy equipment ownership that benefits both customers and equipment providers. As the industry continues to shift toward this model, it’s likely that we will see an increasing number of heavy equipment rental and subscription-based services available to customers.

How to Prepare for These Trends

By focusing on these future-forward trends, you’ll be able to show your company is committed to sustainability and efficiency while staying ahead of the curve in an industry that is constantly evolving. Whether it’s embracing electric equipment, implementing predictive maintenance, or exploring equipment subscriptions and long-term rentals, these strategies can help to reduce costs, increase uptime, and improve overall operational efficiency.

Adopting these trends can also enhance your company’s reputation, as customers and stakeholders increasingly demand sustainable practices and innovative solutions from heavy construction industry players. By being proactive in embracing these trends, your company can position itself for success and contribute to a more sustainable future for the industry.

If you are interested in purchasing state-of-the-art heavy machinery and equipment, explore the options available at Amaco. Contact us to learn more about how these innovative trends and technologies can benefit your business.

Jeff MacDonald