Tracking the progress of a building project is a challenge. Unexpected obstacles or factors beyond your control always crop up, leading to unwanted delays or budget overruns. The rising cost of materials is a prime example, impacting project planning and budgeting. Then there’s skilled labor shortages, which make jobs harder to schedule and cost.
Despite your best planning, keeping on top of all these moving parts manually is near impossible when you need to be at the job site with your team. This is why construction management software has become such an essential tool for residential construction businesses – helping builders take full control of projects while saving time and money in the process.
Progress is required at all project points
When researching the right construction management software options, it’s worth first considering fro where project progress needs to be tracked.
Construction projects are not confined to one single location—multiple sites are involved, each directly affecting the overall success of your build. So, to effectively track progress and streamline your approach, builders need software to work wherever they go, including:
- In the Office
From initial planning right through to invoicing, a lot of important progress happens “behind the scenes” of the build. Creating takeoffs, estimates and customer bids, handling change orders, and taking care of invoicing are all part of office work. The key to success is limiting office time as much as possible so late nights away from the family are a thing of the past.
- At city hall
Whether you’re obtaining permits, scheduling inspections, managing fees, or handling official filings, you’re consistently dealing with government officials to authorize work. Efficiently monitoring communication and progress in this area is key to avoid unnecessary delays and to make sure all work has been given the official green light.
- At dealers
Aside from managing your material orders, you need to watch delivery times, keeping an eye on fluctuating costs, checking product availability and making substitutions when needed. Keeping tabs on your material dealers and associated deliveries is crucial and will help you avoid unexpected hold-ups, inaccurate shipments or higher-than-expected costs.
- With customers
Client interaction involves a lot of back-and-forth, including RFQs, bid acceptance, handling change requests, and ensuring timely payments. Staying across progress here, means you can offer effective, transparent communication and manage customers’ expectations for quick responses.
- On the job site
When you’re onsite you need to closely manage your workforce, ensuring their time is well-utilized and their performance is up to par. You’ve got to be vigilant about material usage and waste, swiftly handling any shortages or complications that may arise. You also need to address any on-site injuries promptly and make necessary accommodations for any changes that may come up. Lastly, staying on top of deliveries is crucial to keep the project moving forward smoothly.
Keep things moving with simple, efficient construction management software
While it’s helpful to have software that automates individual parts of a project, for simplicity you need one platform that can monitor progress from start to finish. Construction management software that offers end-to-end support, gives you a comprehensive view, allowing you to make informed decisions, streamline project management and ensure efficient progress at all stages.
Here’s what the right software should do to keep you on track with your project progress:
- Document management
It should provide centralized storage for all your important documents like plans, permits and contracts. With everything in one accessible location, you can say goodbye to piles of paper, and be assured you’ll always easily retrieve important files.
- Takeoffs & estimates
Forget manual measuring and spreadsheets, the right software helps you create accurate digital takeoffs in a fraction of the time, helping you win more work. You’ll link to pricing from preferred dealers and add mark up or wastage to make sure estimates and bids are accurate. Reusable, customized estimating templates make the whole process quick and easy, giving you a real competitive edge as you make future profit margins easier to predict.
- Professional bids
You can reach more customers in less time and give a great first impression with the right construction management software. Once the estimate is complete, it will help you create professional-looking bids in minutes, allowing you to include varying levels of detail depending on the nature of the project.
- Material ordering and scheduling
Software helps you streamline material ordering by assessing delivery times, costs and availability. It also makes project scheduling straight forward, helping you to keep the team organized and on track. You can create schedules directly from estimates, optimize resources, and keep dealers updated with on-the-job comms.
- Change tracking
It can help you keep a close eye on all aspects of your project, allowing you to manage critical paths on the fly and manage projects your way. You can create and assign tasks to your team and track any delays or changes as they happen – monitoring everything on one simple dashboard.
- Invoicing clients & tracking payments
Having a system that seamlessly integrates project management with accounting means you can design and send accurate timely invoices to customers. The right software also tracks costs and payments, so you manage profitability in real time and always have a view on cashflow.
- Templates for future projects
It allows you to create useful templates for similar future projects, saving you time and effort. Choose between ready-to-use standard templates or create your own bespoke versions based on the job at hand.
- Access from anywhere
With the right construction management software, you can access all your key information from any location, at any time, utilizing different devices. It means you stay connected and in control of your project’s progress whether you’re at the office, on-site or even away from the business entirely.
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Using the right end-to-end builder’s software to track progress on your construction jobs will help you maximize your time, manage more efficiently and increase your profits.