- The success of any construction project depends on effective management of resources.
- Construction management software helps you increase your firm's productivity, efficiency and competitiveness.
- It is crucial that you pick the right software for your needs, as different programs have different functionality.
Running a construction firm is no walk in the park. With so many moving parts, surprises and factors to consider at each stage of a project, having the right construction project management software can make your life easier.
Construction project management software is an all-in-one solution that streamlines tasks and keeps track of projects from start to finish. Having the right software in your tool belt can help you stay on budget, meet deadlines, and even manage your employees, contractors, suppliers, partners and vendors.
To find the right solution for your business, here's what to look for in construction project management software.
Basics of construction project management software
There are two types of construction project management software: cloud-based and on-premises.
Cloud-based (or web-based) construction project management software is accessible anytime, anywhere, on any device with a web browser and internet connection. It's the most convenient option, as your data will be available to you whether you're in the office or at a construction site. Cloud-based solutions typically have a monthly fee, and the software provider usually takes care of all the upgrades and maintenance.
On-premises construction project management software gives you more control. It is installed on your own server and computers, so you'll likely need an IT team to manage the software. On-premises solutions typically have large upfront fees but lower ongoing and maintenance costs.
Cloud-based software is the more popular option for small construction firms. On-premises solutions are more common amongst larger firms for security reasons. If you're uncomfortable with your data residing in an outside server, on-premises construction project management software is the better option for you.
With construction project management software, you get what you pay for. Many factors go into pricing, such as the number of users, size of your business, features, implementation, contract terms and customer support.
To give you a general idea of pricing, popular construction project management software Buildertrend starts at an affordable $99 per month. It allows an unlimited number of users, leads and proposals, with no contracts or setup fees. On the other hand, software like Procore has custom pricing based on the features you need. Large construction firms can expect to pay $1,000 and up per month for software with advanced, enterprise-level capabilities.
Construction project management software offers a wide variety of features, depending on your type of construction firm. For instance, general contractors should look for software that focuses on scheduling, costs and accounting, personnel tracking, and document management. Builders require more robust software with comprehensive features, such as blueprinting, estimating tools, bidding capabilities, RFIs, change orders, equipment procuring and dispatching.
These are the common features available in project management software:
- Project scheduling that considers all factors
- Drawing and blueprinting, or the ability to import files
- Estimating, budgeting and forecasting
- Bidding, bid proposals and bid management
- Accounting and financial reports
- Document management to help you stay organized, save time and keep a paper trail
- Document control to ensure only authorized users can access sensitive documents
- Photos and multimedia
- Meeting minutes
- Equipment procuring
- Resource management
- Dispatching and location tracking
- Purchase orders
- Editable contracts and terms
- RFI generation, tracking and submittals
- Communication transmittals and email tracking
- Field notes, such as daily logs, inspections and checklists
- Personnel management, including timecards and attendance tracking
- Database of suppliers and contractors
Benefits of construction management software
These are the best reasons to get construction project management software, according to Jonas Construction.
1. Higher quality
Construction software helps you plan, control and coordinate the project from beginning to end. It also helps you avoid wasted time, improves communication between team members and clients, and enables the field team to work to their full potential. Contractors can avoid costly mistakes that would lead to financial losses or fatal accidents.
2. Higher quantity
A construction project manager is expected to choose suitable building ground, source project leads, and consider building and architecture costs. With a glance at the construction software's dashboard, you can quickly predict a job's profitability and identify areas where you could save money.
3. Higher efficiency
Construction software with integrated accounting software helps you complete projects on budget and on time. Because it keeps your team on the same page, it's a good way to improve efficiency, streamline operations and increase profitability.
Types of construction management software
Monday.com helps you to effectively manage your construction projects, time and people. It gives you a clear view of all your team's activities, communications and progress in real time. It also helps you keep track of the execution plan. The software is scalable to fit any number of projects and customizable to suit your workflow.
Corecon is cloud-based construction software for project management, estimating, job cost control, collaboration and scheduling. Because it's based in the cloud, you can access your project and lead information anywhere, anytime with a mobile device or browser.
Coconstruct is among the highest-rated remodeling software. It is both mobile- and web-based software for design firms, remodelers and custom builders. It is designed to help you coordinate with your team, communicate with your trade partners and clients, and control the chaos of custom building. It has a calendar feature that helps you coordinate schedules and ensure work is finished within your deadlines.
Smartsheet increases project efficiency and accountability by streamlining your communications and documentation, which can boost your profits and team safety in turn. Many large construction organizations rely on Smartsheet to help them stay productive and communicate effectively.
Choosing the right construction project management software is key to running efficient and cost-effective projects from beginning to end. It can make running a construction firm easier and help you stay on top of multiple projects.
The right software for your construction business will depend on many factors, such as the size of your firm, your budget, features you need and customer support. You'll also have to decide if you want the convenience of a cloud-based system that you can access anywhere or the security of an on-premises solution that's installed in-house on your own servers and computers.
The selection process is easier with software designed for specific construction professionals, such as builders, contractors, subcontractors and engineers.