31 Mar 2020 4 min read

Top Features the Best Management Software for General Contractors Should Provide

 

Your company needs a trusted and useful solution to properly manage your workflows and projects. Here are the top features you need to look for in management software for your company!

The construction industry is constantly progressing, and keeping up with new technology is key to becoming a leader in the future. The Construction Project Management Software market has witnessed significant growth in the past few decades, due to the early adoption of novel technologies by smart companies. The global Construction Project Management Software Market size is expected to grow even more by 2022. Digital transformation empowers the construction industry and allows it to expand even further than it could have done on its own - by allowing general contractors to achieve resource optimization.

One out of every 5 jobs in the United States is filled by general contractors and the general prognosis is that within the decade, they will make up nearly half of the workforce. Making sure that you have a good Project Management solution for your company (and therefore for your team) is key in both your development and your survival! Players that provide the next-generation ERP system have a stellar growth track record - from 2014 to 2018, some of these companies have shown enormous sales figures, with net income doubling in that period! More and more general contractors are realizing that ERP software for the construction industry is a key item that they need to have on their “shopping list”.

When looking at choosing a next-generation ERP system that is fitted to your needs, you need to examine the features you would like it to have. Here are a few features we believe are key to a successful ERP system:

Customer Relationship Management - CRM features should be present in the ERP software that you choose. It should allow you to enter contact information and also import it from wherever it is stored now. It should allow you to attach documents related to a particular client and store information that your team needs to know. CRM features are one of the most popular requests when it comes to next-generation ERP systems.

Integration with the Accounting Software - Accounting features are key in ERP software for the construction industry. These include budgeting, payroll, invoicing, billing and occasionally cash flow options. As a general contractor, you need to be sure that all financials are always up to date and that you can make financial forecasts on the spot - knowing the financial health of your project, at any time, is key! Also, for your accounting team, it is crucial that the next-generation ERP solution you choose has integration with the accounting software already in use (be it Xero, Quickbooks, Sage and so on).

Financial Tendering Module - You need to make sure the Project Management solution that your team chooses lets you speed up, streamline and automate the tendering process (which is usually quite time consuming). Make the right choice and try to automate the process to the best of your abilities. An ERP software solution for the construction industry that focuses on the tendering process should be able to draft tenders, define the tender rules, details and add or attach any additional information as needed. Any management software for general contractors that focuses on the tendering process should be able to send tender invitations to all necessary parties and view received offers - allowing you to compare and choose the one that fits for your company/project needs.

Schedule of Works - A ‘Schedule of Works’ is key in getting the project done on time, so management software for general contractors should have a scheduling feature that allows contractors to assign tasks to their team members - either subcontractors, contractors, apprentices or their own employees. They should be able to track the progress of every task and assign different levels of priority to each one.

Team Management - These features overlap with the scheduling options. The system should allow you to stay focused on the team’s activities, progress, status, and time tracking. If you assign a person to a task inside the project and that person clocks in/out on that task, the system should automatically add an expense to the project entered as the sum of the working hours times the pay per hour. Some of the general contractor software solutions come with the possibility to GPS track your team - to know, at any time, where the person is located and on which task they are working on.

Asset Tracking - No matter the type of asset/resource you use: financial, informational, material and human; tracking all that information is important to you. A new ERP system will allow you to track the employees (to see where they are and what tasks they are working on) and the machines that you have (be it rented or your own). You will be able to monitor and control what happens to your assets at any time of day. Additionally, you will know when a warranty is about to run out or when an item needs to be repaired/replaced.

There are plenty of other features that a great ERP software can provide for general contractors, but we believe these are the key ones you should be looking for. What do you think and feel about these software options? Which ones you would make the most use out of? Do you currently use ERP software - and if so, which one? We would love to hear your thoughts on the topic - please leave us feedback below in the comments area.

 

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