Construction professionals range from digital natives of Gen Z to the “I used a manual typewriter” Baby Boomers. Though their experiences with and views of technology may vary widely, it’s technology—in the form of integrated, industry-specific and cloud-based construction software—that helps them reach their common goal: overcoming disconnected systems for creation of an efficient, effective and profitable construction business.
Construction Software: Why Construction Businesses are Faltering Without It
Many construction businesses today are managing their construction, accounting and field services needs with multiple, disconnected systems. For example, QuickBooks for accounting and separate, perhaps proprietary, systems to manage estimating, project management, bid management, project scheduling and more. And often, they are still relying on manual, paper-based processes to manage workarounds.
This separated and manual completion of tasks by front office and field service teams is not a recipe for success. Disconnected systems lead to data silos, multiple versions of the truth, poor visibility, human error and an overall lack of control. Additionally, employees are unable to coordinate their actions with the right data, which adversely affects the customer and the bottom line.
So, what’s the cure to the disconnect? Cloud-based and industry-specific construction ERP software.
Curing the Disconnect in the Construction Industry
A successful construction project requires the proper coordination of people, plans, financing, materials and equipment. Businesses managing their projects with disconnected systems ultimately find themselves fighting the ills of delays, overruns and waste. The cure is Cloud-based construction project management software housed within a comprehensive Cloud ERP solution.
Why choose an ERP in construction? To answer that question, a quick explanation of what an ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) solution does is necessary.
ERP solutions bring disparate applications into one, centralized system. An ERP solution integrates core business processes, and the integration of applications allows for the unhindered flow of data. Data is collected, synchronized, stored, managed and analyzed in one place and in real time.
With the advent of cloud computing, Cloud-based ERP solutions have become the popular choice for businesses in every industry. Cloud-based ERP solutions, also called Cloud ERP software or Software as a Service (SaaS), provide accessibility via the internet, eliminating the costly investment into hardware and the need for onsite IT support, as well as ensuring data recovery in the event of natural disaster. Personnel in the office, in the field, in the warehouse or at home can log on using any browser-enabled device at any time and from anywhere.
For construction companies, the benefits of Cloud construction management app solutions include:
- Single source of truth for all employees
- Automated workflows
- Elimination of data entry errors
- Real-time visibility
- Seamless integration of core applications (Financials, Project Management, Construction Payroll, Inventory Management, Service Management and CRM)
- Seamless integration with vital third-party applications (e.g., Procore)
Let’s look at an example of a real company that implemented construction accounting and construction software in the Cloud.
Roberts Glass & Service designs, manufactures and installs glass curtain wall, storefront and entrance systems as well as providing interior glazing. They were running their business on a legacy solution, storing data on local desktop computers and relying on paper spreadsheets, which resulted in inefficiencies that slowed their growth and profitability.
The company looked for a Cloud-based solution focused on the construction industry, but found that most offerings were decades old and not “true” Cloud, relying instead on patchworked and rewritten code from their on-premises solutions. After reviewing their options, Roberts Glass & Service chose a relative newcomer to the construction software scene, Acumatica Construction Edition.
Jeff Hamilton, president of Roberts Glass & Service says, “We’ve torn down the silos we had with the client-server solution, so now we have access in one view of the data. We’re now able to see where we are cost-wise with our existing construction projects. We’re able to look at the profitability of each project, look at the customer base and understand how we are most successful.”
He also says, “Acumatica Construction Edition has helped us grow revenue because we’re much more efficient at managing projects.”
Bringing Success to the Construction Industry
Though construction professionals may vary in age and technological experience, they can all agree that their ability to successfully compete in the new digital economy requires turning to modern technology. Cloud computing geared specifically to the construction industry provides the automated, integrated and mobile capabilities they need to serve their customers and remain competitive.
Like Roberts Glass & Service, construction companies should thoroughly research their options. The company’s ultimate decision to go with Acumatica has led them to be able to make data-driven decisions based on accurate, real-time data with the knowledge that Acumatica will adapt and scale with them as they grow.
They also have the benefit of adding as many users as they want, when they want, without paying for each person added. Acumatica’s unique pricing structure focuses on the computing resources a company uses based on the application they are currently using; the type of license they choose (Software as a Service Subscription, Private cloud Subscription or Private Perpetual License); and the projected level of consumption based on the volume of business transactions and data storage. For the construction industry in particular, it makes real sense to have licensing that will grow/shrink with seasonal requirements.
From affordability and seamless integrations to easily managing contracts, budgets, job costing, change orders, daily field reporting, project billing, compliance, payroll and more (from any location and at any time), Acumatica offers end-to-end construction ERP software.
To learn more about Acumatica, contact NexTec Group’s consulting and industry experts. We are an Acumatica Gold-Certified Partner with one of the largest Acumatica teams in North America and deep experience in the construction industry. We are ready to help you take control of your construction projects with visibility and control.