20 Best construction software of 2019 – reviews, pricing, demos

But while there’s not a lot of leeway in terms of how the foundation of a building is constructed, there’s a ton of leeway in terms of buying construction management software. For instance, different kinds of construction management software come with different functionalities. Then, of course, each software product comes with a different price tag.

Before we dig deeper into the specifics, let’s get one thing out of the way: What is construction management software? The term might mean different things to different people, but generally speaking, this software enables a construction business to set up a one-stop shop for an array of functions, including project tracking and cost estimating.

It’s similar to the hub of a job site. Common Features

In other words, buy the software that fits your business’ needs. Put a different way, a low-cost Chevy Colorado gets you from Point A to Point B just as well as a pricey Nissan Titan XD Platinum Reserve does. Sure, the ride in the Chevy Colorado isn’t as fancy, but it gets the job done. Construction businesses should be honest with themselves when assessing the functionalities of construction management software: Will the features be useful or wasteful?

As you do this, make sure you also keep your eye trained on the future: what functionalities will you need in the coming five years? You want to select a tool that will accommodate you now, and have the capacity to scale with you as you expand. Construction management software isn’t one-size-fits-all, so whatever product is chosen should be tailored to the business’ specific needs. Feature

• Disorganization: One of the worst pain points for a construction business is disorganization. It’s no wonder: A single construction project has many moving parts. Multiply that by five or 10, and you’ve got a blueprint for chaos. Construction management software can take a construction business from disorganization to complete organization by offering a broad, consolidated view of the business in one spot. This can help a business make more effective use of its time through project tracking, reduce expenses through job costing, and collect timelier payments through simplified billing.

• Document management: With construction management software, paper shuffling can become a thing of the past. By using construction management software, “teams can immediately collaborate by creating, sharing and archiving documents while adding quality to the process and providing greater job satisfaction,” according to Construction Executive magazine. “As a result, the contractor will learn to better manage day-to-day tasks, time and risks.”

• Freedom from the office: Construction management software also can release a contractor from the shackles of the office. “To get a contractor mobile and away from the desk, construction management software can provide collaboration in real time so users can access and upload project contacts, plans, drawings, and photos at any time,” writes Construction Executive magazine.

Construction software pricing depends on your needs, desires, and expectations. In the previously mentioned buyer trends survey, 43 percent of construction businesses indicate they spend one percent to two percent of their revenue on software. That range is right in line with what partners of Software Connect say a construction business should expect to spend on software. Therefore, as a rule of thumb, a construction business might want to apply the one percent to two percent spectrum to software spending.

By the way, it’s important for a construction business to keep an eye on how much money it’s spending on software. In the Software Connect survey, 30 percent of construction businesses were unaware of the amount of money they’re earmarking for software. How can a construction business truly measure the effectiveness of its software if it doesn’t have a complete picture of its related expenditures? What Does Your Business Need?

New buyers and small businesses: Job costing will be the most important feature to help you manage your basic accounting much easier. Most basic accounting solutions should offer some sort of costing functionality. It may not be industry specific but will allow you to categorize costs and combine them to form a complete job and begin evaluation on what jobs are more profitable than others.

Mid-level companies desiring functions beyond basic construction accounting: Companies upgrading will likely desire a more in-depth estimating tool and some level of bid management. These types of functionalities will be best provided by an industry-specific solution or a vendor that specializes in implementing their software into construction environments.

Large construction companies: Companies in need of a full suite of functionalities should look towards construction ERP solutions that provide enterprise level construction management. These will be software solutions with a long proven track record of assisting construction companies. Advanced ERP software can have a level of custom-development to make them more in-tune with a company’s estimating and bid management needs, to ensure the solution works as a complete all-in-one system. Use in the Cloud

In the construction industry, the adoption of cloud-based software is a big trend, just as it is in other business sectors. In the Software Connect survey, 35 percent of construction businesses said they host or plan to host construction management software through a cloud platform, with 38 percent saying they don’t have such plans and 28 percent saying they aren’t sure.

ProContractor by Viewpoint is a cloud offering for mid-sized contractors. It offers a complete solution to handle all things construction, from accounting to estimating and project management. Former users of Maxwell Systems American Contractor will find that the solution was acquired by Viewpoint Construction Software back in 2014. Can You Use QuickBooks?

QuickBooks has been used successfully by thousands of construction companies. While not an industry-specific construction software, the solution can handle the needed accounting for most construction businesses. This includes managing job costs, tracking time and expenses for projects, and running the appropriate reports on a job/project level.

In line with that, just eight percent of construction and engineering professionals surveyed in 2016 by professional services firm KPMG classified themselves as “cutting-edge visionaries.” Meanwhile, 41 percent said their companies had numerous software platforms in place that are monitored manually, and just 20 percent had one fully integrated project management information system across the entire organization.

Construction management software is one key advancement that’s separating the leaders from the laggards. Whatever the reason a construction business is weighing a purchase of construction management software, it’s not a decision that should be made hastily. Relying on this guide and other research, a construction business can make a smarter choice about the purchase of construction management software, enabling the company to increase efficiency, competitiveness, and profitability.