Richard George, MiTek UK & Ireland Managing Director, discusses the optimism 2022 brings and how MiTek will help UK construction tackle some of the biggest challenges.

Is anyone else excited about the year to come and all it has to offer?

I’ve got to say, here at MiTek we’re looking forward to these next 12 months and the opportunities that lie in store for us and our customers. We have a fantastic team of dedicated professionals, the opportunity to help industry evolve and take on new complex challenges, alongside plans for expanding our operations, as well as launching new products and services. There’s so much to be positive about.

No two ways about it: 2021 was a bit of a strange year.

While this was obviously challenging for us, particularly when it came to increased demand and construction resource scarcity, our focus was always on our customers and honouring our commitments to them. Night shifts became a priority, as the team stepped up to maintain orders and minimise disruption for our customers.

But every challenge is an opportunity. And for many, the possibility to do things differently.

“There’s so much to be positive about”

Here at MiTek we’re investing in the future, and our customers are doing the same. We’re seeing more investment in automation equipment as customers expand their operations. There’s a general confidence in the market, especially in capital equipment, with the intention of increasing capacity, delivering greater efficiencies and set-up time in manufacturing operations.

Demand for Posi-Joist continues to grow as more and more people make it their product of choice.  Interestingly, we’re seeing some of this growth come from existing customers who are now specifying Posi-Joist for different building types, particularly those which comprise flat roofs, such as student accommodation or hospitality projects, alongside Posi-Rafter for pitched roofs.

We’ve responded to this growth and have exciting plans to expand the UK site this year.

What’s making our product so attractive? I’d say that its ability to enable speed of building erection is absolutely key. The ease with which services can be installed when Posi-Joist is used is second to none, and its off-site made-to-measure capabilities mean that the product arrives at your site ready to install. Which means you don’t need specialist fitters, there’s less waste, less trades involved and critically, costs are kept down.

And Posi-Rafter has got softwood flanges, so end details can be more easily used on site for pitched roofs – we can model the complex details quite easily without timber end details. Ultimately build times are quicker, thanks to the ease of installation.

These features will be key in 2022 as the sector continues to boom, but against a backdrop of labour shortages and supply chain disruption. Resilience in managing these issues is seen as the industry’s biggest challenge in 2022. Posi-Joist can be at the centre of the solution, especially in facilitating the decarbonisation agenda.

“speed of building erection is absolutely key”

MiTek globally and here in the UK continues to focus and invest in innovation, and off-site construction to help empower our customers to improve the way they design, make, build.

This year we’ll be launching a range of Posi objects in Revit software plug-ins, which architects and engineers can drop into their models, in turn helping them to visualise and specify Posi-Joist in their projects.

It’s not just Posi-Joist where we’ve seen expansion over the past 12 months. 2021 was an important year for MiTek investment in software developments. For example, Pamir is continuing to develop at pace, and we have more enhancements planned for this year.

Customers will benefit from new Cloud-based management solutions, and with the help of a new user group and additional industry engagement, we’ve been gathering feedback on what this should ultimately look like.

MiTek 3D continues to be a huge success, with more than 17,000 models of roofs and floors uploaded in the last 12 months from a standing start. Customers can expect more enhancements during the year with improved tools for both on-site and office use.

The bottom line? There’s a lot to be optimistic about and we’re looking forward to continuing to provide our customers with the expertise and tools they need to deliver great projects and tackle industry challenges head on.