When you’re the project manager of a construction project, one of your many responsibilities is watching your client’s budget and making sure every cost is accounted for and necessary. Today, top-notch construction job-costing software makes this job a lot easier, but how do you know which one of these packages to choose?
The thing is that it’s much easier to choose excellent software when you know what you’re looking for, and below are four things to consider when you’re researching this type of software.
Know Which Features Are Most Important to You
All project management software has different features, and the more features they have, the more expensive they are. While you don’t want to base your buying decision just on price and nothing else, most of us do have a budget to follow, so deciding what features you need and which ones you don’t need is very important.
Project management options, time-tracking tools, and the ability to track hours of many different subcontractors are all possible features to choose, but to save money, don’t insist on these features if you don’t need them.
Consider the Size of Your Company and Its Specific Needs
There are many different types of construction job-costing software, and not all of them are made for your company. If you’re a small company with few employees, you simply don’t need a large software package that is meant to accommodate huge companies. Everyone wants to grow their business, but until you start to grow, it’s best if you stick with something small enough to accommodate your needs and maybe allow you to grow slowly over time.
You should also consider exactly how many people need access to the software. If you don’t have a lot of employees who need to operate the software, you can save a lot of money.
Make Sure That the Software Can Keep Track of Change Orders
Change orders are one of the most common reasons why the costs of a project increase, so you’ll want to make sure the software you choose provides details about your change orders. The software should be able to provide details about your change orders, as well as keep track of the costs associated with materials, labour, and overhead.
Again, this is where you’ll want to make a list so that you know ahead of time exactly what features you need in your software and what features you can do without. But change orders definitely need to be a part of any software you choose.
Try Not to Go Crazy with Add-ons and Extra Features
Good construction job-costing software usually comes with lots of add-ons and extra features, but in the beginning you simply won’t need them all. You can always go back later and add more features to your existing software package, but you’ll save money and even time if you don’t get anything you don’t absolutely need, especially in the beginning. To start with, just stick with what you need and nothing else, and you’ll be surprised at how much cheaper and simpler your life will be as a result.