Construction Management Software Buyer's Guide
The Best Construction Management Software is All About Organization and Control
By Bergen Adair, Market Research Associate
When you think of humankind’s greatest achievements, odds are what comes to mind are things we’ve built. Construction projects are some of the largest, most vital undertakings humans perform — and managing them can be an enormous task. But it doesn’t have to be a disorganized one. Construction management software streamlines the project management process from start to finish. Managers can organize tasks, monitor budgets and control daily activities from a centralized hub. This software facilitates communication, organization and control.
- Top construction project management software facilitates communication and collaboration between all departments and teams to ensure projects run smoothly.
- The goal of construction management tools is to combine disparate segments of project management into a centralized interface.
- Some goals for implementing construction management tools are increased efficiency in communication, risk management, budgeting and workflows.
- To choose construction software that’s right for you, you have to gather requirements, shortlist vendors, review potential matches and take products for trial runs.
What this Guide Covers
See how the leaders fare against the most common key requirements
Benefits of Construction Software
One of the main obstacles construction projects face is lack of communication. Someone didn’t get the right kind of materials, equipment wasn’t properly maintained or no one remembered to tell the subcontractor about an issue with a power outage — you get the idea. Basically, construction management tools aim to reduce the opportunities for these kinds of errors by centralizing the communications, planning and management into a single interface. Never again will you have to worry about emails being accidentally deleted or sent to a spam folder. All your messages can be sent directly within the system.
Construction project management software combines financial, technical, material, inventory, HR, risk and project management features into a single powerful system designed to get the job done right the first time. It creates a standardized process for managing jobs, streamlining every step of the process for both managers and employees. This standardization has the added bonus of making your company seem more professional by giving your projects a uniform look and workflow.
This software automates many menial tasks like sending alerts, scheduling maintenance and exporting documents. Speaking of documents, how often have you had to chase a contract along a paper trail of emails and hard drives? Construction management software keeps all records centralized and accessible so you don’t have to go hunting.
Nothing is worse than a project that runs way over budget. Cost control is a key benefit of construction management tools. It aims to reduce the frequency of over-budget projects and costs that blindside you.
These benefits may sound vague, so let’s get into specific goals for your organization that construction management tools can help make a reality.
Expert recommendations and analysis on the top construction software
Streamlined Workflow and Increased Efficiency
|Construction management tools take the many disparate processes of managing a project and brings them under a single roof. From the maintenance technicians to foremen and CEOs, all levels of an organization can reap benefits from construction project management software. The software lets managers allocate work to the correct team members efficiently, as well as track overall performance to identify pain points.|
More Efficient, Organized and Accessible Communication
|With construction project management, users can bridge the communication gap between departments through internal messaging systems and project updates. Software offers modules that keep track of changes, updates and stages of individual projects, encouraging smooth management and reducing opportunities for error. When managers use construction management tools, their projects become much more organized. This not only makes everyone’s lives easier, but also makes it safer and easier to recreate for the next project.|
Estimate and Monitor Risk, Cost and Potential Issues
|Users can utilize construction management tools to assess, estimate and mitigate a variety of risks. From cost estimates to storing recommended procedures for different risk occurrences, construction tools help with these crucial tasks. This helps managers run a more profitable, more organized and safer project.|
Expert recommendations and analysis on the top construction software
Basic Construction Management Software Features
|Financial Planning||Construction management software offers a range of financial planning modules to help users estimate, manage and track expenditures. Cost estimate modules allow users to make more accurate estimates for different elements of their projects, reducing the likelihood that the project will have to grind to a halt due to funding shortages. It also tracks predicted and actual budgets, making the next project’s estimates much more accurate. This software provides tax management and auditing modules to ensure your project is always above-board.|
|Materials, Inventory and Equipment Management||Material requirements planning modules combine materials purchasing, shipment scheduling and equipment tracking into a single intuitive interface. They monitor inventory, track shipments and alert users when stock runs low.|
|Project Management||Project managers can utilize the project management feature to delegate and monitor the big picture of their project, as well as the day-to-day tasks of their team members. This feature gives users insights into RFIs, change orders, committed costs and other crucial activities. Break large projects into manageable pieces with work breakdown structures and delegate tasks to the correct workers efficiently.|
|Risk Management||This feature lets managers predict financial risks like contractor delays or quality requirement failures, but it doesn’t stop there. Users can also plan for external risks like environmental disasters, tax changes or public objections, so the emergency plan is always within reach. You can even access inspection tools on mobile devices to make safety checks and track any incidents onsite.|
|Document Management||Document management features allow users to send, receive, retrieve, scan, index, store and share business-related documents. Upload images, schematics and drawings to the system to allow collaboration and communication based on identical information.|
|Subcontractor Management||Manage contracts, track financial activity and delegate subcontractor tasks directly within the system so everyone is always on the same page. Users can communicate with subcontractors via the internal messaging system or set up automated text alerts to make sure they reach them at crucial moments.|
Expert recommendations and analysis on the top construction software
Advanced Features & Functionality
|HR Integration||Whether you use Quickbooks or Workday Enterprise, you have to have some kind of software to manage your employees. Construction management tools either integrate with HR platforms or offer their own payroll and leave management modules.|
|CRM Integration||If your business utilizes CRM, you need a solution that can integrate with it. This lets users directly access contacts, sync meetings and appointments, and monitor all client interactions.|
|Reporting and Analytics||If you want as much control as possible over your project, business intelligence capabilities like reporting and analytics are a must-have. Advanced drill-down into the granular data of projects can highlight pain points and give users a comprehensive understanding of project progress. Use this to track objectives and get real-time updates of significant changes.|
|Field Management||Give your front-line supervisors the software they need to manage their employees efficiently. Field management features include crew-based field reporting that draws insights on crew performance patterns to help you optimize your whole team. Help them help themselves by creating punch list items in the field to see tasks through to completion.|
|Fleet Management||Products can offer a variety of useful fleet management features. This software helps keep vehicles in peak condition by scheduling preventive vehicle maintenance, which can be assigned to specific technicians to ensure the work gets done on time. Users can send automated communications via GPS with fleet management features, alerting drivers of schedule changes, hazards and other issues.|
Expert recommendations and analysis on the top construction software
Construction Software Selection
Every construction management tool offers a different combination of these functionalities and features, often with different focuses on each. To ensure you choose the right software for your organization, the first step is gathering your requirements. Identifying which features are most important to your unique situation helps narrow down vendors that do not meet your needs right off the bat. Start by asking yourself some of these questions to identify your goals:
Questions to Ask Yourself
- What are the benefits I’m hoping to gain from implementing construction project management software?
- What problems am I currently facing that I hope to solve with construction management tools?
- What is my budget?
- How will implementing software change my process for project management?
- Do I want a cloud-based or on-premise deployment for this software?
- What technology resources do I have to support your implementation of this product?
- What other software systems (Payroll, CRM, ERP, etc.) do I need my construction management tools to integrate with?
- Is my business growing? If so, how scalable do I need this system to be?
Compare Construction Software Vendors
Once you’ve done that, you may be interested in an in-depth feature comparison like this one our analysts have created. Understanding how different vendors are rated for different features can help identify which ones specialize in your needs.
This construction management software comparison should help you create a shortlist of several products that could potentially meet your needs. Reach out to each vendor — they’ll be happy to talk to you, especially since you’ve already done such intensive research! Ask them if they offer trials, demonstrations or other programs for you to take their product for a test run. Demonstrations of the selected software will help screen out construction management tools that are lacking in key capabilities or are not sufficiently intuitive.
A detailed request for information (RFI) or request for proposal (RFP) will help guide the demos and discussions and formulate a gap analysis. The vendor responses will help you develop your business case for funding and essential executive support. If they don’t offer a demo but you still think they might be a good fit, try to find video tutorials or demos online from other customers. It’s absolutely crucial to see for yourself how the program works when someone is actually running it, and relying on previews or sales demos could result in the costly mistake of poorly matched software.
Read reviews of each vendor online from a variety of sources to get an idea for how current users like it. Make sure these reviews are up-to-date and from an unbiased, unpaid source.
Here are some questions to ask vendors when considering their product:
Expert recommendations and analysis on the top construction software
Questions to Ask Construction Software Companies
- What browsers is your product compatible with?
- What mobile devices is your product compatible with?
- How long does a typical implementation of your product take?
- What support resources do you offer?
- What ongoing or recurring fees should I expect?
- How does this system encourage active improvement management?
- What technology resources will I need to support your implementation of this product?
- What other types of software and specific software products can this construction management software integrate with?
- Is this system easy to use?
- Is it scalable to the size I need it to be now or in the future?
- The Best Web-Based Construction Management Software
- What Is Construction Management? And How Construction Software Can Make All The Difference
- The Top BIM Software: Features, Benefits and Recommendations
- A Guide to Construction Management Software And Scope
These steps will help prepare you to choose a construction management tool that is perfectly tailored to your unique business needs. Once you’ve gathered requirements, composed a list of questions and compared your list of vendors and requested demos, you’ll have several options to choose from that all meet your needs. Get started on your construction management software selection journey right away to improve every aspect of your project management process.
Designed for projects of all sizes, Procore’s platform aims to streamline communication, track financials and resources and handle a project from planning to delivery. Real-time data accessibility gives users actionable insights from a centralized dashboard. Users can leverage hundreds of integrations through an included app to further boost efficiency.It allows construction firms, contractors, architects and engineers to share data in the field, edit designs and provide up to date reports of a project’s life cycle. Manage multiple construction projects from one place with no drop in efficiency. Its product portfolio supports project management, quality and safety measures, construction finances and field productivity.
Buildertrend is a web-based management package with a focus on streamlining construction processes. Scheduling and financial management help users cut down on costly errors and ensure the project is moving forward at a steady pace. It provides planning, estimation, subcontractor scheduling, customer management and more. It can also handle pre-sale tasks, including bidding, proposals and CRM integrations. Its cloud-based deployment provides users with easy mobile access from smart devices in the field.
PlanGrid is a mobile-enabled management suite that gives users the ability to store blueprints and documents in the field. Its collaborative framework boosts the efficiency of field teams, and an easy-to-use design gives users intuitive control over a wide array of helpful capabilities. It provides access to all of your critical project-wide documents, photos and drawings through a single source of truth so that everyone is always on the same page. With features built for projects of all sizes, it is a valuable inclusion for anyone looking to raise productivity and strengthen communication on the job site.
iSqFt is a web-based management suite that works with contractors of all sizes. It brings together every piece of bidding and pre-construction processes into one platform. Contractors can track all relevant information about a product up to bid day and easily share information with interested bidders. Subcontractors can also benefit from features that give them access to prequalification tools based on ConsensusDocs. General contractors, construction managers, utility contractors and design firms will find a host of features concentrated on creating an effective and quick bidding process. Not only that, but it contains tools that help discover and lockdown commercial construction leads and build relationships.
E-Builder provides a cloud-based platform with a focus on capital planning. This product aims to keep teams connected while providing a configurable platform to support facility owners. A number of modules are available out of the box so users can design their project management experience. Manage project data with this solution's suite of tools. With the functionality to improve planning, design and many other key construction processes, e-Builder provides a collaborative project environment.
CoConstruct is a system focused on remodeling and custom home building. This software suite streamlines many complex processes, including financial and project management. This system also puts communication at the forefront to keep clients happy and teams working smoothly. Keep your projects on track while streamlining and simplifying your accounting practices. This product integrates with several third-party packages like QuickBooks to keep things simple and comfortable for project leaders. The solution is well-suited for small to medium-sized operations.
Raken is a cloud-based reporting and management solution that fits with projects of all sizes. It contains powerful reporting tools focused on saving time and money. With strong mobile capabilities, users can type out or dictate daily reports directly from mobile devices while on the job site.Toolbox talks can be hosted from within the app itself and users can add photos, videos, weather reports and more as attachments to reports. It helps users keep track of subcontractor hours as well with time management capabilities.
Autodesk’s BIM 360 brings your construction teams together through a unified platform. This software package uses real-time data from all aspects of your projects to better inform decision-making and increase the profitability of your operations. Automation of industry standard documentation promotes organization and project efficiency.BIM 360 fosters a collaborative environment through work-sharing and designs that can be viewed, edited and annotated by users with permission. A number of modules can be added to this solution for a more complete management environment. These modules include BIM 360 Docs, BIM 360 Design, BIM 360 Build, BIM 360 Glue, BIM 360 Layout, BIM 360 Plan and BIM 360 Ops.
eCMS is a cloud-based platform that leverages financial and project management tools to bring organization and efficiency to your daily processes. Contractors of all sizes can gain actionable insights by tapping into their data with a foundation of information management tools. Its cloud-based deployment gives users secure access to their data while providing mobile, browser-based tools to view your information on the move. Save time and money by automating many of the non-productive tasks that use up valuable employee time.
VPO provides a single platform to manage a construction project’s complete life cycle — from inception to completion. It is designed for architects, engineers, suppliers, vendors, owners, contractors and construction management firms. It is an easy-to-use, secure and cloud-based workspace used by construction project stakeholders to view, publish and measure the progress of a project. It leverages Microsoft’s cloud-based modules and combines them with project management, providing a scalable workspace that works for both small and large scale projects.
CMiC is an end-to-end management platform built to handle the complexities of larger projects and the challenges of smaller ones. It focuses on bringing teams together with a suite of tools that help automate daily construction tasks and integrate your favorite platforms. It is deployable with both on-premise and cloud-based methods to better meet the unique requirements of your business.It contains a comprehensive suite of features that tackle everything needed to handle the entire lifecycle of a product. Some of these include budgeting, forecasting, change orders, bidding, procurement, document management, business intelligence and much more.
The eSUB system is a cloud-based solution that focuses on mobility and providing subcontractors with a solid set of digital tools. It provides multiple avenues to connect field workers and project managers while helping subcontractors manage their daily processes. Automation of labor tracking and paperless documentation helps speed up construction management processes and keep you organized. Its focus on connecting the field to the office with a searchable database of all project data helps keep project processes held to a standard. With all of your project information in one place, team members can work at an efficient pace by having everything they need to know at the tip of their fingers.
Knowify is a cloud-based platform developed for the needs of small- to mid-sized businesses, especially commercial subcontractors and residential contractors. It helps reduce the time and effort spent on administrative tasks like contract management, bidding and change orders. Scheduling and tracking features allow administrators to see exactly when and for how long employees work.Mobile access lets managers and forepersons do their jobs in the field while still being able to send critical data back to the home office. It offers integration with QuickBooks so that users can retain their accounting workflows.
Aconex aims to become your construction project’s single source of truth for the many processes that occur on a construction site. With an emphasis on connectivity between teams and project members, Aconex streamlines time intensive tasks while promoting collaboration and data visibility.
Corecon is a fully integrated cloud-based platform that focuses on organizing and streamlining tasks such as estimating, project management, job costing and more. Additional modules help users handle lead tracking, bid management and communication with the inclusion of the TeamLink Portal. CoreconLink provides integration support to get everything up and running with existing accounting workflows. Connect internal and external users with mobile flexibility and browser-based access through the included Corecon8 module.
ComputerEase is an accounting and project management platform for contractors of all sizes. It contains fully integrated job costing, contractor management, equipment management, accounting and more to better serve the field-to-office daily processes on and off the job site.The Red Flag inclusion provides everything needed to see if subcontractors have the required liability insurance for their jobs. Dispatch boards let project owners and forepersons assign the most capable employees to relevant tasks and jobs. Leverage modules like profit and loss to see where a project is succeeding or failing.
Sage 300 is a software solution with project-wide organizational capabilities. This product’s cloud-based integration connects all points of a construction project to an easily accessible location. The product also contains tools that allow project managers to control and view the entirety of a project’s lifecycle. The system streamlines and organizes accounting processes and is suited for operations of all sizes. Multiple accounting modules let project owners tackle financial aspects of a project in a way they are comfortable with while also cutting down on process time. This software solution pairs well with several different industries ranging from general contracting to homebuilding and residential remodeling.
RedTeam provides a cloud-based software solution with a focus on optimizing and streamlining project management for infrastructure and building operations. This platform helps managers take control of the project’s entire lifecycle from pre-construction to delivery of the final product. Medium to large enterprises can take advantage of mobile apps to stay on top of on-site activities from anywhere at any time. This application helps connect project team members through robust communication features while also promoting data visibility across the entire enterprise. Utilize project information captured by this solution to plan, schedule on-site tasks and make educated decisions about the future of the enterprise.
Paskr is a cloud-based, all-in-one solution focused on simplifying, standardizing and automating construction projects. It is mobile, collaborative and supports the entire lifecycle of a project. Users gain visibility and boost efficiency by tracking every step of a project and streamlining communication between office and field team members. It includes CRM support, bid management, estimating, change orders, billing support and more. Share access to critical project information with team, stakeholders, engineers and more with version control options.
Microsoft Dynamics SL combines the power of an ERP solution with robust project and financial management features. It helps users deal with fluctuating demand while providing accurate budgeting support to keep financial records organized. It functions within businesses of any size and can help boost sales, reduce job costs, provide insight into company data and ensure all compliances are met. It comes in two versions, Business Essentials or Advanced Management, that can come as a complete package or users can choose a la carte.
Projectmates is a project and construction management software solution focused on capital operations. This software package helps you save time on projects through the automation of resource-consuming processes. The solution also brings communication to the forefront with features that promote collaboration and a team-based environment. Manage your projects with this easy-to-access platform that helps keep you moving forward while also staying organized. Take control of your complex project tasks like bidding, planning and maintenance with the program's management suite. This solution includes a number of functions that enable project managers to access and view the important tasks that define a project.
Contractors Cloud is a cloud-based platform with a focus on lead and sales management for contractors. It is highly customizable to meet the various requirements of a business while providing boosted communication between clients and team members.Manage expenses and financial information while receiving up-to-date notifications on the progress of any given project. It supports estimating, vendor and client portals, numerous integrations, automated workflows, production scheduling, materials ordering and more.
JD Edwards EnterpriseOne is an integrated suite of applications that leverages automation and Internet of Things (IoT) to streamline business processes and optimize the supply chain. It’s for small, medium and large sized businesses in the consumer goods, manufacturing, distribution, asset intensive, project and services industries. It provides capabilities related to financial management, supply chain management, customer relationship management, human capital management, manufacturing, reporting and more. It can deploy on the cloud or on-premises. It collects real-time data and creates visualizations to make insight gathering easier. It has an emphasis on real-time visibility and allows the user to see how products are moving through the supply chain, live. Additionally, forecasting and budgeting capabilities are integrated with the production process to help develop actionable plans.
Spectrum Construction software provides complete cloud-based construction management application, combining project management, accounting and job cost software in one suite.It features Construction Accounting, Project Management, Equipment Management, Material Management, Purchasing and Inventory Management, HR and Payroll Management, Service Management and Powerful Rporting capabilities.The software's Web-based design offers mobile access to all of the software’s applications and functionality, as well as a user interface that replicates a browser environment. Spectrum's Construction Dashboard gives users an at-a-glance view of relevant information and can be customized by each user with apps relevant to their job.The software is best suited for small, medium and large enterprises.
UDA Construction Suite is a combination of three platforms - ConstructionSuite, ConstructionOnline, and OnSite Mobile Applications. ConstructionSuite combines estimating and project management with a construction-specific CRM system. It is available for residential, industrial, commercial and specialty projects. Having served over 550,000 projects in 75 countries, it has managed projects worth over $70 billion. With fully integrated estimating, scheduling, specification and document management, UDA ConstructionSuite gives users total control over their projects.
When you want to improve visibility and profitability across your construction business, you need ProContractor™ by Viewpoint. As the industry's only all-in-one cloud software solution for estimating, project management, and accounting, ProContractor helps you manage the entire project lifecycle from bid to project completion in a single solution to collaborate easily and make decisions with confidence.
SAP Business ByDesign is software that integrates workflows such as supply chain management, customer relationship management and financial services. It uses real-time data analysis and visualization to streamline processes such as demand planning and bank reconciliation. As a part of SAP’s software suite, it can integrate with a range of programs, therefore allowing users to configure it to meet their specific needs. This system is intended for small and medium-sized companies. The product is hosted in the cloud, meaning that it can be accessed anytime and anywhere as long as an internet connection is available. SAP uses encryption and highly secure data facilities to ensure that client information is protected.
Vista by Viewpoint is a construction accounting solution. It is integrated and can be scaled and configured according to the requirements of the business. It reports time-critical financial data to decision makers, and connects field personnel, office staff and extended team seamlessly. It makes it easy for managers to view the real-time status of the current project. It maintains RFIs and critical tasks from all stakeholders while managing risk and tracking revenue. Its support team helps migrate from outdated software platforms by helping at every stage of deployment.
Penta Technologies is a construction accounting and operations tool that incorporates industry best practices by providing standardized processes. It is available for commercial and industrial contracting, field service and engineering firms. It brings construction accounting and project management together. It simplifies inter multi-company management and makes collecting field data easier. It also provides daily analytics to decision makers. It is also available on mobile for more efficient and flexible field data collection. It has cloud hosting capabilities, which gives teams the ability to access data on their devices. Users also benefit from 24/7 data security features.
SAMPro Enterprise is a business-wide service management software solution that enables the streamlining of your business by reducing operating costs and improving efficiency from the field to the back office. This allows businesses to grow operations without adding employees. From wireless field service software to accounting software, SAMPro Enterprise's end-to-end integration of our software allows firms that need maintenance management and service management software the ability to automate and streamline - all while reducing management costs and increasing revenues.
IFS Applications is a suite of connected workflows such as accounting, warehouse management, distribution, sales and HCM. By integrating a range of front- and back-office workflows, the program aims to alleviate internal snags and streamline operations.The system contains real-time insights and can be accessed either through the cloud or via on-premise installation. It’s intended for use by medium and large companies. The program is highly integrative and contains various online support and training options for users.
JOBPOWER is an accounting and document management based platform that is suited for businesses of all sizes. This system contains features focused on a variety of construction industries as well as subcontractors, home builders and contractors. Users can leverage this application to stay on top of project costs while maintaining secure and organized documentation. This solution is available on all platforms and is deployable as an on-premise or cloud-based system and provides many helpful integrations with other accounting programs. Users can cut project costs and improve their bottom line with this accounting focused application.
Roots Software is an estimating, accounting and project management tool for subcontractors and general and government contractors. It provides estimation and helps anticipate work procurement requirements, track progress analytics and other business management processes. It has a built-in CRM and manages leads for contractors allowing them to manage their bids and allocate resources accordingly. It also has budgeting inclusions that allow for predicting expenses and recording financial transactions. Integrating it with third-party services to maintain records and accounting details is easy and according to industry standards. It has templates for labor and compliance reports, among others.
Farvision ERP is the flagship product of Gamut Infosystems Ltd. It is cloud-based and provides solutions to the real estate and construction industries. Users can manage procurement, supply, chain, materials, human resources and financials at anytime from anywhere with mobile devices. It also provides control over contractors and inventory. It supports decision making by showing information snapshots to management in real time. It has a team of professionals ready to resolve problems faced by customers.
The Spitfire Project Management System fully consolidates your company’s strategic information into a seamless solution addressing the business management needs of today’s contractors. Spitfire provides seamless data flow across your entire project in one project management, project accounting and financial management system.
ClickHome includes full series of residential construction building processes. It helps save time and money for building businesses by allowing building more with fewer resources. It facilitates builders to manage the whole process from initial client engagement to post-handover maintenance. ClickHome handles all the processes during building homes including interactions with different individuals from potential clients, contractors, vendors to internal staff and supervisors on site. It helps construction businesses improve so they can keep up with the quality homes designed by the teams. It supports building and maintaining sales capture and also uses clients' feedback. ClickHome, with its variety of features manages teams, suppliers, vendors and increases office and on-site efficiency. Its automated call scheduling tool automatically calls suppliers to manage trade processes and monitors client movings. ClickHome provides field solution compatible with iPads and offers an easy-to-use application whilst out on site.
See the Price/User for the top construction management software… plus the most important considerations and questions to ask when shopping.
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