Modular buildings are the future. We've always thought so and have been on this journey since its inception, but now that Weston Homes has invested in a £40M MMC factory for the specific purpose of producing modular homes, it is clear that we are not the only ones with this belief.
Weston Homes' New Factory
Weston plans to use the new 180,000 square foot factory, which is fitted with top of the range Swedish automation and robotics equipment, to supply up to 4,000 steel framed homes each year. These buildings will fulfil Weston's own requirements, with the surplus buildings being manufactured and sold for use by other developers. The company has rebranded this aspect of its business as British Offsite and will be operating out of the new premises in Braintree in Essex. The re-branding has been deemed essential to recognise that the new factory will supply the industry as a whole, rather than just Weston Homes.
Weston Homes, who recently reported an impressive pre-tax profit of £18.2M for the year ending July 2022, anticipate their first orders for modular buildings produced in this new factory being signed by June this year. This timing coincides with the point at which they anticipate that the housing market will regain its buoyancy following the downturn in demand from first time buyers at the back end of last year that was associated with the increase in mortgage rates.
This next-gen facility represents a confident investment by the well known and profitable house builder, which should act as a positive indication of increased demand in the residential modular market this year and beyond.
Why Modular Is The Future
Modular homes represent an excellent investment as they create a lower environmental impact, can be delivered more quickly than traditional builds and reduce the disruption experienced by neighbours and the public. They create exciting jobs in specialist roles in manufacturing, robotics and automation, in addition to a range of shop-floor manufacturing, quantity surveying and project delivery roles.
Modular buildings offer extended opportunities for quality control, cost savings in terms of reduced waste and shorter build timescales. They also improve health and safety for workers involved in the builds. These factors combine to make modern methods of construction, such as modular, a smarter choice for future home building. They offer equal value in other industries, including new and upgraded education facilities, commercial properties and healthcare.
At Build Space, we are specialists in modular construction and understand the benefits in the speed of delivery and logistics of this ever-evolving space. We are, therefore, ideally placed to support clients and candidates to access the skills, experience and opportunities that they need to develop an exciting and rewarding career within this sector.
The new Weston facility is expected to require a 15% increase to the firm's total workforce; a low number noting the size, scale and expected output of the facility. However, the investment made in automating many of the assembly processes is given as the determining factor for this relatively modest increase in personnel.
Elsewhere in the industry, demand for construction workers, quantity surveyors, specialist project delivery experts and experienced IT professionals remains strong. At Build Space, we have the contacts, connections and vision to place talented individuals into appropriate positions on both temporary and permanent contracts.
We can support businesses to secure the skills that they need at the time that they need them, on the most appropriate employment terms to suit the needs of the business and the individual. To find out how Build Space can help your business to achieve its schedule and objectives, please call us today.