Just next year, the enterprise resource planning (ERP) software market is expected to reach $41.69 billion globally (Allied Market Research). As such, it should come as no surprise that it has grown in popularity among a variety of industries, from those in manufacturing and distribution to those in healthcare and other professional services. Of the industries adopting this software, however, ERP Software for construction is truly booming.
With the help of ERP software, the construction industry is changing in shape: Because of this technology, construction companies seeing boosts in productivity, more effective project management, improved cost control, and more. While many have adopted the software for improved results, 50% of construction companies are still relying on manual methods (Software Advice), putting many at a disadvantage to their competition.
If your construction company is still using manual methods to get things done, or maybe utilizing ERP software that’s not entirely meeting your needs, it may be time to build software that caters to your unique needs and expectations.
As you take this into consideration, here are 8 trends in ERP software for construction that many construction companies are already benefitting from in 2019.
1. Access anytime & anywhere
As anyone in the construction industry knows, tackling a construction project involves many moving parts: There are team players working onsite, others working at the office, and perhaps more at the organization’s headquarters. In any case, more often than not, all of the team players are not working under one roof, which means that being able to access your ERP software from anywhere isn’t just necessary—it’s critical.
Thankfully, the ERP construction software of today is often cloud-based. Not only does this mean that your organization no longer needs an entire room of servers dedicated to storing all of your important documentation, but it can be accessed anytime and anywhere. Whether it be project management tools, calendars, or documents, your organization will no longer be limited to the office computers or paper-based documentation.
2. Improved collaboration
As noted, as construction companies often have team players in multiple locations, from onsite project managers to the project director in the office, it can be difficult to ensure that everyone’s on the same page. This doesn’t even include the client or potential subcontractors who may be involved. As construction companies grow larger and processes become more complex, ERP software that fosters improved collaboration is a must-have.
With the help of communication software to more robust project management tools, project coordinators and directors alike will be able to more easily track their communications, the status of their projects, and more. Likewise, these tools can provide a centralized hub for both team players and stakeholders to access tools for increased productivity, as well as retrieve the latest updates on their projects.
3. Optimized use of resources
Many construction companies still implement manual processes, despite the fact that over half (52%) of business executives feel that using software for data collection would greatly reduce the potential for error in this process (AEC Business). Perhaps this is why ERP software is growing in its use as a tool for optimizing the use of resources.
In prior blogs, we’ve discussed software is often the key to achieving operational excellence, as well as a critical component in driving a business’s efficiency. As such, ERP software can help to not only optimize the contribution of human resources but the physical resources provided by suppliers, for instance. As a result, construction companies are often able to cut costs and generate more in revenue.
4. Accurate insights & predictions
Whether through software or manual processes, most companies make an attempt to learn from their actions in order to improve in the future. Likewise, developing predictions for what the future holds can help to better prepare companies for what lies ahead, such as what materials you should anticipate ordering for a given project.
Although many companies still rely on manual processes, more and more will lean into ERP software to develop more accurate insights and predictions in years to come. Those that jump on this trend will have a leg up over their competitors and likely see a return on their investment.
5. Cross-platform functionality
In year’s past, desktops and laptops were the only options for accessing your ERP software. However, smartphones and tablets (not to mention wearables) have now entered the game, providing mediums for quick access to your ERP software. That said, cross-platform functionality is an area still in need of significant growth in the construction industry.
With the growing demand for access to ERP software on mobile devices, more and more software development companies will seek to develop mobile-compatible software solutions for the industry. And while wearables are gaining momentum in the tech industry, there are few solutions are yet available but can be expected in years to come.
Need it now? Find out when you need custom software for your business.
6. Better BIM functionality
BIM (building information modeling) technology nothing new, having been introduced well over 30 years ago. However, today, BIM is more widely adopted among construction companies, as it helps organizations to more clearly communicate each phase of the modeling process to all parties involved. As such, BIM functionality is becoming an integral piece of ERP software.
While the BIM of today is mainly designed to foster stronger collaboration throughout the construction process, the BIM of the future will provide additional features that promote cost control (which we discuss further below). Some of these features are expected to include improved cost and scheduling functions, among others.
7. Improved cost control
Now that ERP software is becoming standard among larger construction companies, companies are taking note of what they’d like to get out of their software, and one area rising in demand is the need for cost control. As most construction companies know, tracking project estimates, bids, and accepted proposals can be difficult, but software can help.
From proposal management to accounting management tools, whatever your organization needs to stay on track financially can be integrated with your ERP software. As such, companies can more accurately track spending to revenue, and adjust their practices accordingly to continue driving that revenue even higher.
8. Automation of business processes
The most exciting trend in ERP software, or the operational software realm as a whole, is the rise of automation. Automation saves your employees’ time by doing those menial tasks for them, increasing the amount of time that they have to do what only humans can do.
Automation isn’t just limited to crunching numbers or generating financial forecasts. Rather, it can also be used to send messages to subcontractors or delegate tasks to project coordinators. In this way, you’ll be able to maximize what your team has to offer, without even bringing on a new hire.
Would You Benefit from Custom ERP Software for Construction?
If you’re currently relying on manual processes to complete your construction projects, or you’ve found that your off-the-shelf software is falling short, it may be time to build a software solution tailored to your specific needs. Creating custom ERP software for construction is an investment, but when done right, it can provide a better ROI than you could have ever hoped for.
ClikFocus has been building custom software solutions for organizations like yours for over a decade. Whether you need custom ERP software for construction or another form of operational software, our team is ready to work with you to bring your custom software project to life.
Your custom software solution begins with a conversation—drop us a line.