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AI in the Crane and Hiab Industry: It's a Human-Centric Future

At McLeod, we pride ourselves on being at the forefront of innovation and technology in the crane and hiab services industry. However, when it comes to the roles of crane and hiab operators, the unique complexities and demands of these jobs make them less likely to be influenced by the automation and AI trends reshaping other fields.



Crane Hire Future - We still have Operators
Crane Hire Future - We still have Operators


Here’s why the essential human element in crane and hiab operations remains irreplaceable.

Understanding the Uniqueness of Crane and Hiab Operations

Crane and hiab operations involve much more than lifting and moving heavy objects. These operations require a deep understanding of various factors that can significantly influence the outcome of a project. Operators must be adept at setting up cranes, assessing site conditions, understanding the specifics of the job at hand, and identifying potential hazards.


Each task involves a level of situational awareness and decision-making that AI and automation technology cannot fully replicate.

The Limitations of AI in Practical Application

Artificial Intelligence excels at processing data and performing well-defined, repetitive tasks. However, the environment in which cranes and hiabs operate is often unpredictable and dynamic. Operators must make real-time decisions based on their experience and intuition—qualities AI currently lacks. For example, assessing a site for potential risks, such as unstable ground or other humans moving, what happens next requires a human touch.


Risk Assessment and Management

A significant aspect of crane and hiab operation is risk assessment and management.

Operators are trained to identify potential hazards and determine the best action to mitigate risk. This process often involves an understanding of the physical environment and the specific requirements of each lift. Although AI can help analyze data, it cannot yet understand these complex dynamics in a way that matches human judgment.


The Importance of Human Experience

The experience that crane and hiab operators bring to a project is invaluable. Veteran operators have a wealth of knowledge that comes from years of hands-on work. They understand the nuances of different machines and can adapt their strategies based on specific conditions and challenges. This depth of experience allows them to execute tasks with precision and safety that AI cannot achieve.


Preparing for the Future


At McLeod, while we acknowledge AI's benefits in terms of analytics, predictive maintenance, and operational efficiency, we also understand that technology cannot replace the core of our operations—our crane and hiab operators.


We believe in harnessing technology to enhance the capabilities of our operators, not in replacing the personal judgment and expertise they provide.

In the rapidly evolving technology landscape, it is essential to recognise the roles that require a human touch. For the crane and hiab operating industry, the future is not about replacing operators with AI but about integrating technological advancements in a way that supports and enhances their irreplaceable skills.


At McLeod, we continue to celebrate and invest in our operators, ensuring that they remain at the heart of every operation, supported by technology but not overtaken by it.

So if you're looking for a role that is likely to be here tomorrow, you're in the right place. Crane and Hiab Operators are not going anywhere.

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