Construction Project Management, Process Improvement
The Ultimate Construction Software Buyer’s Guide – Part 3
by Carolina Lorenzzetti | September 16, 2020
Phase 3: The Data Era
A construction management software lifts organizations to the next level of performance by improving the capture and manipulation of data, and by extending its lifespan.
Where you really earn ROI
All software offers two benefits:
- It streamlines manual tasks.
- It makes possible new achievements.
The implementation of construction management software not only eliminates the grunt work of manual tasks. The data it offers—and its cloud-based infrastructure—open new vistas. And these new capabilities are where you really earn your return on the investment.
Now you can look ahead further
Capital programs are most successful when you anticipate impacts on cost, schedule, and quality, and manage accordingly. For example, we talked to a capital program vice president who has used his construction project management system to avoid cost overruns on a $1.6 billion program of 190 active projects! The key is in knowing all of his costs to completion.
Now you can manage dispersed teams and sites
The COVID crisis has driven home the value of moving data to the cloud. As teams could no longer safely meet in the office, organizations with immediate, remote access to current data safely and securely continued their collaborations. As an added bonus, construction management software eliminates the need to co-locate personnel during healthy times. Now you can draw upon a much wider talent pool. For more about construction project management using dispersed teams, see Project Restarts and the Impact to Budgets and Schedules.
Now you can shave contingency budgets
We’ve encountered contingency budgets of 15 percent; 10 percent is not uncommon. But organizations using cloud-based construction management software have cut their contingency budgets as low as 6 percent! Liberated contingency funds enable good things in the larger capital program. We know a hospital that used the money to hasten work on a new cancer center, thereby more quickly bringing improved care to their community!
Now you can distribute data entry
A cloud-based construction management software makes data entry easier by distributing it across more team members. As an owner, you're going to invite your contractors, architects, engineers, subcontractors, and sub-consultants into the system, where they’ll enter information for you. That way, you're in the approval business, not the data entry business.
Now audits can be easy
Many organizations implement construction project management software in response to negative audit findings. But construction project management software does much more than ensure you have a process, adhere to it, and can prove it. It makes the entire auditing process much, much easier. For example, before implementing construction project management software, organizations would spend months preparing information for auditors. Now they just give the auditor a username and password to the construction project system, where the information they seek is easy to find. Easier audits with higher compliance are especially valuable to governmental owners, who are held to the highest standards of probity.
Now you can better manage operations
One of the big differences between a construction project management system and other applications is that the first will not create another data silo. On the contrary, it collapses silos! Enter that data once and it lives forever. The construction system integrates with financial, geospatial, and facility management systems. Now everyone has easy access to as-builts and operation & maintenance manuals. You’ve eliminated data entry while strengthening your portfolio of management tools.
Construction project management software and government
Government cultures are distinct from those of private enterprises. Delivering services is different from delivering profits. And government systems tend to be more conservative. For example, many government workflows depend on paper. And few government entities have robust work-from-home policies (although the COVID pandemic has forced changes there). Nonetheless, governments are coming around to the virtues of construction project management software. It’s good government to raise efficiency, transparency, and accountability. Any productivity tool that enables people to be good stewards of the tax-dollar and still go home on time is welcomed by decision-makers and employees alike.
- Greater visibility
- Distributed work
- Reduced contingencies
- Easy audits
- Lower cost of ownership
- Adapting to a new way of working—acting instead of reacting
Construction management software is at the center of a healthy construction project ecosystem
Unlike spreadsheet-based management, a construction project system flows data to the software you use to manage payments, approvals, plan reviews, geospatial data, operations and more. No more data entry errors, delays or redundancy.
How do you know when it is time to start looking for a change?
There are multiple signs that tell you your organization may be ready to switch to construction management software
- Change order volume shoots up.
- Costs run over.
- Communication goes sideways.
- Data isn’t trustworthy and forecasts are iffy.
- Half the day goes to chasing paperwork.
- Payments run late.
- The process is inconsistent.
- Someone is entering data more than once.
“Because we have confidence where projects are, and because we developed the detailed forecast, we were able to pull $70 million out of other projects and redeploy it.”
About e-Builder and the Trimble Portfolio
Many companies offer software for contractors to use in managing projects. Only e-Builder Enterprise is designed for the unique needs of the owners of buildings and infrastructure.
Our flagship product, e-Builder Enterprise, improves capital project execution by raising productivity, improving quality, reducing costs, and delivering projects faster. It’s FedRAMP compliant.
It reduces the cost of ownership throughout the structure’s lifespan.
Since 1995, e-Builder’s construction technology leadership has helped thousands of global companies, government agencies, and healthcare and educational institutions improve the plan–build–operate lifecycles of their capital programs.
As a Trimble company, e-Builder integrates with the wider Trimble portfolio of software for operations and financial management.
Does your current Construction Management process need a health check?
It’s easy to see whether a construction project management system is a fit for you and your organization. Take this no-obligation assessment now.
Take the assessment
The best way to understand how e-Builder Enterprise can transform construction program management is to see it for yourself.
Key Topics Covered: Collaboration, Construction Project Management, Owners in construction