Hexagon continues to deliver new and improved tech for use by surveyors and technicians. However, the surveying profession faces a different problem – staffing to complete today’s jobs and preparing for tomorrow’s project needs.
The recent pandemic, while forcing us into our homes to minimise virus exposure, reduced the opportunity to introduce new technologies to the surveying profession. Thankfully, companies like Hexagon continue to bring new and improved tech for use by surveyors and technicians. However, the surveying profession faces a different problem – having staff for completing today’s jobs and preparing for tomorrow’s project needs.
The geospatial professions, specifically surveying, are looking for the next generation of talent. The tools of the future are already here, and capturing their capability is key for promoting our profession. A trip around the Hexagon exhibit hall is all one needs to see how advanced the technology of geospatial data and mapping has become. The line-up of new technology is impressive, while advancements within “traditional” survey equipment (total stations and leveling instruments) does not disappoint.
Laser scanning and remote sensing has continued to evolve in capability and user-friendliness. While the past several years has been highlighted with UAVs and aerial photography, the use of remote sensing on aerial, terrestrial, and hydrographic autonomous vehicles has grown leaps and bounds. Couple these advances with growing technology in underground utility detection, and the geospatial technician now has many more tools in their toolbox.
All this technology, however, is for naught if the surveying profession does not have enough personnel. While labor shortages are widespread across many professions and occupations, the surveying and geospatial professions are facing a critical breaking point in the next few years. Design surveys and construction staking for improvements to failing infrastructure will fall behind due to lack of survey data. Lack of available land surveys will delay timely property conveyance for new owners. The clock is ticking, so solutions to finding our next generation of surveyors has reached critical mass.
But there is hope.
Hexagon LIVE Global 2022 provided critical information for promoting geospatial to our future professionals and technicians. Many of the tools being developed for surveying are based upon similar platforms and technology, such as online gaming and AR/VR experiences. By promoting our profession as one that utilises these cool “tools,” we can encourage a new generation of surveyors and geospatialists. We need bright minds who can see the world as a digital model, so let’s start doing a better job of promoting it with today’s technology. Who knows what the mad scientists at Hexagon are cooking up next? I’ll be back in 2023 to find out.