Selecting the right Construction Software can be the key to either success – or failure, if it doesn’t have the necessary functionality to help you maintain detailed control and management of contracts.
As a starting point, you’ll want to consider whether the software has
the essential features to support your business needs:
1. Contract Analysis and Cash Flow
With more and more construction businesses appearing in the media due to financial difficulties, it’s vital that you have efficient control of your contract margins and cashflow.
Therefore, when on the lookout for a construction industry ERP solution, you need to ensure that is has the capability to accurately monitor contract budgets at a detailed level and monitor the cost to completion. Another key element is variance from budget to actuals. This should be easily and readily accessible to Contract Managers and Quantity Surveyors to allow quick decisions to be made based on insightful data and not just your gut!
2. Subcontractor Management
Effective management of subcontractors is also a critical component that you should consider, as a part of your Construction Industry ERP system.
Consequently, when selecting a software package, it is recommended you raise the following questions:
Is HMRC recognised?
Can cater for timely payments & approval processes?
Is compliant with current legislation?
Can store historical information on subcontractor’s performance? (allowing you to make future decisions on Subcontractors with ease)
Can raise subcontractor orders with detailed information?
Provides comprehensive retention management and reporting?
3. Contract Sales Valuations and Certifications
If like many construction companies, you store your valuation breakdown information outside of the core ERP system (typically in Excel or Word
Documents) and then input summary information into the system, you’re living in separate information islands. The multi-location storage problem!
To avoid this, look for a construction solution which has the functionality to create and control detailed Valuations and Certifications effectively. Your construction software should be able to produce the correct level of detail and output the customer facing document formats required.
Ultimately, if the system can produce the correct documentation quickly and efficiently, then your customers will pay quicker, especially if they are receiving the correct information on time. In addition, there should be real-time visibility of when applications should be raised and when they should be certified. Outstanding application and certificate reports should be standard within the system along with the effective management of outstanding retentions. Trust us- it will make life a lot easier!
Integration, Integration, Integration
And finally, you should always consider integration as part of your buying process. Any construction solution should be part of a single, fully integrated system that also includes financial, payroll and HR modules. In the 21st century you should not be reliant on clunky import / export routines or interfaces into third party systems that can often lead to the duplication of records and data input. The key is ensuring that all requirements are met within in a single system with one interface and one reporting tool.
To read the full list of ‘Must-Have Construction ERP Software Features’