When thinking about new technology it’s easy to get lost in the buzz. You hear terms like AI and BIM and wonder what it practically can do for your business. 

At the same time, you can’t afford to dismiss innovation altogether. After all, the housing market and the construction industry as a whole are not immune to changing world events, and your competition no doubt continues to evolve using new technology.

One trend that affects everyone is the economy. Experts believe that high interest rates and elevated material prices will continue to weigh on home sales as well as construction and remodeling activity in the coming year. That will challenge construction companies small and large.

Faced with modest market growth in 2024 and into 2025, it’s important to improve your project management to win more work and earn the kind of reputation for customer service that pays dividends in the future. 

The way you close new clients and run current projects also is critical to maximizing profits when the volume of work trends lower. It’s not enough to out hustle the competition, you have to outthink them, too, using construction technology.

No doubt you’ve read that construction management technology can do more than bring more work, but also offer the right earnings for your business. However, it’s important to focus on the correct construction technology. Not all technology benefits residential construction workers. You need to focus on technology that is easy to learn and has immediate impact to your construction project and your bottom line.

Below, we discuss 6 technological innovations that are bright spots for residential builders. They carry proven benefits and offer options in services and price so that you can choose what best suits your individual situation.

1. Online Customer Collaboration

Having superior customer service will carry the day in a competitive environment that offers fewer jobs to bid. To build the reputation that opens more doors for your business, you need to take advantage of cloud-based software that keeps your customers up-to-date without all the hassles that come with email, text messaging and missed phone calls.

The latest software offers online customer portals that allow customers to quickly approve invoices, choose material options and see project updates at a time and place convenient to them.

Modern construction management software allows builders to setup online portals within the same construction technology used to create estimates and manage project schedules for the job site. Uploading customer documents is done with simple computer mouse commands, and the software allows builders to decide exactly what documents are shared with the client and when.

Most importantly, client portals allow busy construction professionals to message clients straight from the software so that when a customer logs into the portal they will see the message straight away without any risk of the message being overlooked in a cluttered email inbox. Now, that’s using construction innovation in a logical way!

By tracking customer conversations through construction management software, builders like you can quickly get up-to-speed with the latest customer concerns while also reviewing prior conversations. This greatly reduces the amount of notes the builder has to spend time manually writing and filing away for future reference

With modern cloud-based software, it can all be stored in one place that is easily accessible from any computer device that accesses the internet.

For example, Buildxact offers an excellent cloud-based client portal. For details on how to up your customer service, check the video below.

2. Site management

Closely related to customer communication is the need for superior team communication and site management. Making sure you have the right team members at a project is critical to keeping projects on schedule and on budget.

Today, advanced mobile apps give your team the tools to post progress photos and notes so everyone stays on the same page through daily logs. These same apps running on a mobile device also help you find skilled subcontractors through updated job placements.

Imagine posting jobs to a large network of talented trades and finding a wide range of builder pros, from plumbers, to electricians, to framers on the same app used to track daily logs of your ongoing projects. That’s a real time-saver because you only have to learn one application to do multiple tasks on either an iPhone or Android phone.

Interested in learning more how such a phone app can bring increasing efficiency to your business? Visit Buildxact’s discussion of Buildxact Onsite below:

3. More accurate estimating

Market experts believe high prices for materials and labor will continue in 2024. Construction pros like you can’t afford to make pricing mistakes when sending estimates and bids to potential customers. Often, to keep customers happy, pricing mistakes in today’s world come out of your pocket not the customer’s.

To avoid these troubles, modern software connects estimating tools to dealer pricing in multiple ways. Either you can:

  • save your own pricing catalogs
  • connect with dealer catalogs online
  • use pricing assistants that pull data based on your project location

All of these options provide more accuracy when bidding.

Rarely is an estimate 100% accurate, especially when clients change their minds over the weeks and months that it takes to complete a home or remodel. For problem solving like this, construction estimating software offers tools for processing change orders.

The best software keeps change orders simple by processing them from the list of costings you created in the project estimate. This saves time by giving the client a clear understanding of the source of changes and how it impacts the final cost of the project. This helps customers make more informed decisions. Plus, the ideal software setup offers the client a way to accept a change order online for faster processing.

Click below to see how Buildxact handles the change order process.

4. Better project management

Winning a job is only half the battle when it comes to running a successful business. Completing projects on time and on budget is key for reducing waste and earning the repeat business you deserve.

Staying on target means knowing all the key areas of work and how the completion of one task depends on the successful completion of another. 

You need to have an overall view of how all your construction subcontractor work fits together and when the associated building materials need to be on site. Nothing wrecks a schedule or a budget like having a team onsite waiting on other work to be done or stuck without enough materials.

To keep it all together, today’s software offers Gantt charts for a quick view of project progress and upcoming tasks. Scheduling tools should also be on the same platform as the daily logs your team creates using photos and brief messages so that an overview of progress can take place within a single, comprehensive software platform.

Take a quick look at how quick and easy daily logs can be:

5. A platform of many tools and services

Modern software makes connections for you so you don’t have to overthink the different technology that helps your business.

As you have read, with the right software platform, you can use the same basic skills to perform many tasks, from estimating and bidding to scheduling. The secret lies in the ability to pass costings and project data from one task to the next.

There is yet another very important task modern software can perform — budgeting and cost tracking. What better way to see the performance of your business than as a project progresses at the job site. Modern software shows you real-time performance of your cost categories. This way, you have time to act before it’s too late. It also helps you remain competitive with future projects of similar scope.

You also have the ability to connect your project’s financial data like purchase orders and customer invoices to popular software you may already be using for accounting, like Intuit Quickbooks or Xero. A feature like this can save time and take digital technology out of the realm of science fiction and into your day to day operations.

For example, home construction trades can use software to pre-qualify subcontractors using automated questionnaires that ask for proof of insurance. Complete software also offers easy templates for the onsite creation of SWMS and the associated process for tracking safety training for worksite team members.

6. Sustainable building

Today’s technology works in conjunction with other important home building objectives like sustainable building practices. Sustainable building is of interest to homebuyers who want to reduce the carbon footprint of their home as well as lower long-term costs.

New materials have entered the market that reduce the carbon footprint of building materials, and modern software offers innovative ways to bring these materials into home projects.

For instance, through Buildxact’s no-risk trial, builders in North America can access estimating templates from ABC Collaborative that meet Zero Carbon Aligned standards.

Try Buildxact today at no risk

Book a demo with one of our team members of start a free 14-day trial today and see how Buildxact’s construction estimating software can help revolutionize your construction process and the way you work with technology.