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Panel offers future focus of consulting engineers at ACEC conference

CEOs in the consulting engineering sector are being tested like never before, as running a competitive firm post-pandemic is increasingly a contest of who’s best at redefining workplace culture and mastering real estate plays.

Delegates attending the recent Association of Consulting Engineering Companies — Canada leadership conference in Ottawa were told of rampant shifts in their sector from top to bottom, with new rivals such as Amazon, McKinsey and Autodesk elbowing their way in and many firms now midnighting as start-ups, creating their own proprietary software and peddling it on the market.

Zofnass noted the engineering sector is going through a wave of M&As, with some of the new players coming from outside the traditional sector, such as EY and Amazon; and she said firms are embracing new technology not only through acquisitions of tech firms but they are getting into the tech game themselves.

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