How AI Can Help Assess Construction Risk

Artificial intelligence (AI) uses modern technology to simulate human behavior using machine learning and natural language processing. There are different types of AI, the most common being reactive machines, limited memory, and theory of mind AI.

Reactive AI machines are the oldest forms of AI and lack memory-based functionality. What this means is that they cannot learn from previous experiences. This limits their ability and reduces its effectiveness for use in industries like construction.

The construction industry is best suited to use limited memory AI, which stores and learns from historical data—though not all AI platforms do so.

As technology evolves, it’s expected that future artificial intelligence platforms will use concepts such as the theory of mind and begin developing self-awareness for more robust features.

Many construction companies use platforms like to assess construction risk. These platforms identify potential risks and offer options for resource optimization and recovery.

Types of Construction Risk

The types of risk that will affect a construction project can depend on several factors, such as the type of project in question and its size. The bigger a construction project, the riskier it becomes.

Financial Risks

Financial risks are those that could impact the financial viability of a project. For example, a construction company may take on too much debt to finance a project, which could put the project at risk if the company is unable to make its loan payments. Other financial risks include cost overruns, schedule delays, and change order disputes.

Legal Risks

Legal risks are those that could result in legal action against a construction company. For example, if a construction company violates environmental regulations, it could be fined or sued. Other legal risks include safety violations, contract disputes, and faulty workmanship.

Operational Risks

Operational risks are those that could impact the ability of a construction company to complete a project. For example, bad weather could delay construction or damage equipment. Other operational risks include labor shortages, material shortages, and equipment failures.

Reputational Risks

Reputational risks are those that could damage the reputation of a construction company. For example, if a construction company is involved in a scandal, it could lose business. Other reputational risks include poor customer service, shoddy workmanship, and unethical business practices.

How Can AI be Used to Assess Construction Risk?

To Identify Safety Hazards

Artificial intelligence can be used to identify safety hazards that could potentially cause accidents. They do this by analyzing large amounts of data to forecast quality and safety issues on construction sites.

It may also be used alongside virtual reality to identify risks before they affect workers. For example, project managers can have a virtual walkover of the construction site and identify faults like dangerously hanging electrical cables and floors without safety rails.

To Prevent Budget Overruns

Artificial intelligence can be used to prevent cost overruns by using predictive models. Predictive models use historical data to try and predict how much a project of almost similar design and scale will cost. If the current project is more than that of past projects, then optioneering can be done to reduce costs.

Another way that AI can prevent cost overruns is by identifying design flaws and notifying the contractor before it is too late.

For Construction Management

Artificial intelligence can be used to assess management risks by analyzing previous historical data. AI platforms can use this data to recommend how the current project can avoid past mistakes. The recommendations may be in the form of improved planning plans, construction sequences, and time management.

It may also identify inconsistencies between an original blueprint and what is currently being implemented. If there are any deviations, the technology can notify the contractor early and suggest remedial measures.

To Create Accurate Construction Schedules

Unlike manual schedules, AI schedules are easier to follow and are less prone to mistakes. As a result, they are more efficient. Also, AI can generate schedules that are flexible in the sense that they will adapt to emerging changes.

Some AI-generated construction schedules can reduce construction time and reduce labor costs significantly.

For Site Monitoring

Artificial intelligence is currently being used to monitor construction sites to increase productivity. For example, it may identify workers who report to work late and those who go home early.

It may also be used to scan workers’ faces to know who is using or holding a particular tool. This can reduce construction theft, as each worker must account for what they have.

AI site monitoring may also help with tracking equipment use, used with image recordings, to know which machinery is malfunctioning.

AI Reduces Risk and Increases Efficiency

In summary, construction companies using artificial intelligence tend to be more productive due to decreased risk. More accurate schedules and ensuring workers are always held accountable can do wonders for moving a project along. Project managers who want to leverage technology should consider investing in optioneering platforms.