Popular contracting software
(the weak link and the big freaken gap)
Contracting businesses have made use of digital power tools - think software - to wildly varying degrees. Much of the industy is still smaller outfits that have made limited use of software, leaving plenty room to streamline businesses in this mobile manufacturing industry.
Accounting software is the most used software for contracting businesses. Widely used by bookkeepers, office administrators, and spouses, this software has been the backbone of software for contracting and construction related businesses since it came on the market. However, this software is seldom used directly by contractors themselves.
Estimating software is the next most used software. While there are a number of complex estimating programs, many small to mid size contracting firms have made estimating spreadsheets work reasonably well for their needs.
Once set up correctly, spreadsheets are easy to use, flexible, and work well. Any problems with estimating spreadsheets are usually related to setting it up correctly OR accessing the most current version of the spreadsheet.
Specialty design software
Specialty design software is commonly used by suppliers to the construction industry and some types of contractors. What the software does varies widely depending on the trade or supplier.
Email is not software as much as it is a way to communicate. But love it or hate it, it's here to stay. While many contractors were slow to start using email, suppliers and customers put pressure on many a contractor to 'get with the times' - and they have.
The weak link
Email usually works beautifully to distribute the final version of something to one or more people, but emailing can quickly turn into a horror show when input and revisions are required from a number of people - especially when pressed by deadlines. This has resulted in the wrong information being mistakenly left on countless files and documents, causing trillions of grey hairs and battered bank accounts.
The big freaken gap
The use of estimating software usually occurs before a job. Design software is frequently used before or early in a job. The use of accounting software occurs late or after a job (unless it's larger).
These software programs are used mostly at the beginning and end of jobs. But what about everything in between? A lot of information needs to be managed, scheduled, and communicated along the way. This is the big gap - where there's room to streamline and turbo-charge contracting businesses.
Every job depends on managing information, either in your head or using systems to do it. The difference between mildly profitable and wildly profitable comes down to how well information is managed.
BuildIT helps contracting businesses manage information and streamline work flow.
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