Construction Management Software Guide

Glossary

What is construction management software?

Construction management software is software built to help individuals run and manage their construction business. These software solutions are used by small businesses all the way up to large operations for either residential or commercial construction operations. For the purposes of this post, we will be focusing specifically on residential construction management software.

Construction project management software features

Construction project management software typically has a combination of communications, operations, financial, or project management features.  

Communication

From communicating with team members, trade partners, and clients to creating a solid paper trail, construction management communication features help contractors move messages from crowded inboxes to one centralized online location. Other typical features include automated messages and deadline reminders for the schedule and selection process.

Operations

Construction project management software operations features help contractors run the day-to-day of their business while also offering a high-level view of where areas of improvement exist. Typical operations features include customer relationship management, detailed reporting options, and customized branding.

Financials

Construction project management software financial features help contractors protect their profit margins and increase financial transparency. Typical financial features include bid management, change order and purchase order management, estimates, real-time budgeting, client invoicing, accounting integrations, and client payments.  

Project Management

Detailed scheduling, robust mobile apps, and timesheet tracking are common project management construction management software features that help empower contractors to have the information they need right at their fingertips.

What are the benefits of using construction management software?

Grow your business

Running a residential construction business is hard and trying to scale one is even harder. The good news is that construction management software can help. Communication and scheduling features help keep teams up to speed and on the same page which means managing two or more projects at once can go from daunting to doable. Taming the everyday chaos means residential construction business owners have time to step back from the day-to-day to focus more time on growth-oriented activities such as hiring more people or optimizing their sales process.  

Operate more efficiently

A major benefit of construction project management software is the ability to automate previously manual tasks such as sending out bid requests, tracking specs and selections, and sending invoices. Combining this with a single-entry estimating system means construction business can easily input a project’s information up front and then automatically push that information along throughout the lifecycle of the project. Sending bid requests to preferred vendors, seamlessly updating projects based on client selections, and sending accurate invoices suddenly becomes a simple and efficient process. This all adds up to saving time and energy in tracking down and double checking every detail before hitting send on that email.

Be more confident in your financials

Construction project management software helps contractors budget and track costs  profits throughout the lifecycle of a project to ensure that their project, and profits, are headed in the right direction every step of the way. Utilizing real-time data enables residential construction companies to avoid the dread of crossing their fingers at the end of a project to hope everything adds up in their favor.  

Types of construction project management software

Point and integrated software solutions are two types of construction project management software available on the market today. Each type of software has its own positives and negatives depending on the needs of a company.

Point solutions

Point solutions tackle a specific process for businesses such as takeoff or bidding software. For smaller teams, point solutions are usually the first type of software that teams implement because they are easy to implement and provide quick wins. These solutions are also a good fit for companies that are looking to upgrade processes before their next project starts and who are on a tight budget.  

Integrated solutions

Integrated solutions, on the other hand, provide a much wider range of process gap solutions that are interconnected through a single online interface. While point solutions may only address a contractor’s billing process, integrated construction project management solutions can address billing, communicating, operating, and project management processes. By comparison integrated solutions usually have a longer implementation process and take longer to realize wins than point solutions. The wins integrated solutions offer, however, usually are more impactful to a business than the wins point solutions provide.

Frequently asked questions

What construction management software is best for small businesses?

There is no one size fits all for construction management software and every small business should identify their pain points and find software that addresses those pain points. Typically, small businesses first start using and master a point solution before they upgrade to using integrated construction management software.

How do you find the right construction management software for your business?

Finding the right construction management software starts with asking the right questions such as what are you hoping to get out of a software and what features are most important to your business? After finding software that aligns with your needs you can then evaluate your options against each other or utilize introductory pricing to test run a product. Utilize CoConstruct’s construction management software buying guide to learn more about finding the right tool.

When should you invest in construction management software?

If you are waiting for a perfect time to implement construction management software you’ll be waiting forever. Especially since part of the reason you started the hunt for a software solution is that you don’t have enough time as it is. One advantage of construction software is that it can be implemented piecemeal and therefore at any time of the year for your business. Start small by utilizing a few core features at the beginning and slowly expand month by month until your team is fluent in all the features of your new software.

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Harry Wahl
Harry Wahl
Marketing

Harry helps create data-driven content for the residential construction industry including case studies, customer stories, industry trends and more.