Executive Summary: There exists construction software to do nearly all functions in your construction company. Your best source of software advice: your friends in the industry.
I’m drowning in choices. There exists software to “help” your construction company in many functions:
- Takeoff – two and three dimensional
- Job Costing
- Timecard collection
- Insurance certificate management
- Daily reports
- Submittals and other construction documents
- Asset management
- Safety management
- Toolbox talks
There is software out there which claim to do it all, and then the ones that specialize in just one task will claim that they are expert in this one task and the other software is weak.
Not knowing whether to buy the all-in-one or just the one-off specialized software is another great discussion to have with your friend at the water cooler at the local construction trade organization meeting.
Talk to a friend. I’ve attended many of the demonstrations on screen with the salespeople and have also visited the booths of some of these software companies and trying to piece together what you need is daunting.
My best advice is to talk to a trusted friend or colleague. He or she may be a competitor, a subcontractor or supplier, your CPA or attorney, or that someone you spoke with at the water cooler.
My story. I deal with many customers regarding construction software from Florida to Hawaii. In the course of business with these clients, we tie in with other software and discuss other software like the ones listed above. I learn the most from the actual users – not from those that attended a demo on the product. It’s the little stuff that makes the difference. One major item being customer service. A 24/7 customer service is what our industry needs, not a get-back-to-you-in-three-days-or-so customer service.
If you have a colleague that seems to have their company controls working well, ask him or her what they use. Despite all of this social media, I think word of mouth is still the #1 way to sell anything.