The demand for residential construction is higher than ever: the U.S. Census Bureau and U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development recently released a report showing that new home construction increased by almost 7% in February 2022, up by 22% from a year prior. In fact, it was the fastest growth rate in 16 years. However, while there are more homeowners on the hunt for their dream home, not all bodes well on the market.
A Challenging Landscape for Residential Construction
Executing a high-quality home construction project takes immense skill from Contractors, Subcontractors and other skilled professionals. A combination of skyrocketing demand and labor shortages has led to significant challenges for the residential construction industry. There’s simply too much work available without enough qualified professionals to get it done.But it’s not only skills that are in short demand; it’s supplies as well. As with most other industries, residential construction has been burdened by supply chain issues. Industry data shows inflation has caused prices for commodities like wood and steel mill to increase by 101% and 113%, respectively.
It’s clear that these issues are frustrating for both Home Builders and buyers and that a tenable solution must be found.
As the industry deals with the aftermath of the pandemic, digitalization and technology can play a key role in fostering resilience for residential construction professionals executing new home construction and home renovations.
Equipped with the right tools construction management software has to offer, professionals can quickly start targeting a plethora of pain points, cutting down costs and helping teams finish projects on time.
Executed properly, residential construction management software can pave the way for efficient operations. As a holistic approach to planning, designing and delivering new home projects, using digital tools can help all construction stakeholders work smarter and more efficiently.
But how exactly can it help Home Builders in the short- and long-term? In this article, we’ll take a look at the top 10 benefits of using construction management software for both Home Builders and homebuyers.
1. Preventing Mistakes Down the Line
When it comes to construction management, software can automate tedious tasks like adding specifications and calculating costs — ultimately ensuring the data you have on the platform is error-free.
The right construction management apps also enables your team to work on the same cloud-based environment, ensuring that all stakeholders are working with up-to-date and correct information. This reduces mishaps and errors.
On the budgeting side, construction management software can provide more visibility into the job’s financials, so you can make more accurate forecasts and stay on track throughout the entire project cycle.
2. Getting Rid of Miscommunication and Misalignment
Digital construction solutions such as team and contractor management software can promote efficient cross-collaboration through a single source of truth (SSOT). In traditional construction management processes, stakeholders tend to work with physical blueprints and locally-stored files. Architects, subcontractors, plumbers, interior designers and all other parties easily end up working with slightly different templates, blueprints, or file versions, potentially leading to bottlenecks and delays.
By using cloud-based construction management software, collaborating and communicating becomes streamlined for everyone involved, as they can quickly access the latest information through the program’s portal anywhere, anytime. From estimates to line items to design notes, all the data can easily be stored in one SSOT.
Poor project data can be minimized, leading to better communication. This can translate to more efficient processes, enabling teams to stay within the budget and improve overall transparency — all by eliminating redundancies and disorganization.
3. Reducing Administrative Inefficiencies
Building the perfect home isn’t all glitz and glamor. There’s a lot of repetitive work that is both necessary but tedious. By using the right construction management software, it’s possible to automate tasks such as data entry or budget tracking. Instead of manually entering data points, project managers and other stakeholders can instead opt to check the information and ensure it’s accurate, freeing up valuable time.
A user-friendly residential construction management solution will allow members to create modular workflows that are easily configurable, leading to scalable workflow automation. If used properly, the platform can easily win construction teams days or weeks back over the project’s lifetime.
4. Reducing Human Error
It’s impossible to have a perfect track record when it comes to home construction projects. However, certain tasks can be more prone to human error and repetitive data entry jobs are one of them. Residential construction management software that comes with workflow automation doesn’t just save time, it helps reduce the risk of human error and embed higher levels of accuracy into rote tasks.
In addition to improving efficiency and minimizing the chance of human mistakes, it allows stakeholders to focus their energy on more high-level, strategic initiatives for the final project. It also makes it easier to guarantee stricter consistency and can improve knowledge management, as all relevant stakeholders can automatically be updated when certain parameters are met.
5. Minimizing Project Uncertainty and Risk
Construction enterprise resource planning (ERP) software is a critical part of planning residential construction projects. Building on the SSOT concept mentioned earlier, construction ERP helps to track all running costs, such as building materials, sub-contractors, assets and much more. Anything related to the home construction project, whether it’s revenue- or productivity-related, is located in the ERP solution, providing end-to-end visibility and maximum transparency.
The information can then be used to draw up forecasts on the financial status of the project, allowing stakeholders to keep a close eye on the real-time progression of the project and quickly make data-driven, reactive decisions. This plays a key role in reducing project uncertainty, as decision-makers can ensure the project remains financially viable — far before it’s too late.
6. Preventing Budget Overruns
It’s a well-known truth that far too many construction projects suffer from cost overruns. This is primarily due to unreliable project estimates and poor project or time management. That said, construction software can help prevent budget overruns by making it easier to calculate costs and expenses.
For example, robust construction ERP and Building Information Modeling (BIM) solutions can estimate and forecast the financials of your projects and eliminate surprises. By showing stakeholders potential change orders before they happen and providing increased visibility, staying on time and within budget is simplified. All purchase orders can be tracked, while contracts and agreement details are captured in the same application so risks can be easily managed.
Instead of reacting when costs have ballooned, digital construction software makes it quick and easy to stay within budget.
7. Preventing Manpower Issues or Delays
Managing the residential construction schedule on a day-to-day basis can be challenging to pull off effectively: from Subcontractors to chief architects to electricians, there are various workers who need to be on-site, at varying hours and times. As people may be in different teams, they may not always be aware of what all the task deadlines or progress updates are for your project.
That’s why it’s important to manage projects using construction solutions from start to finish. Residential construction scheduling software can visualize tasks and milestones, create digital schedules lookaheads and ensure everyone’s working with the same data, reducing the risk of delays.
8. Preventing Health and Safety Issues
To successfully pull off a new home construction or renovation, it’s critical that the health and safety of your construction teams are taken into consideration. A robust software solution can help streamline health and safety compliance by providing the needed documentation and records.
The systems can digitally capture and manage any incidents or observations, as well as provide reports giving you insights into your baseline and trend. This can help companies gain visibility into the state of safety within their organization and make risk assessments in no time. Done properly, teams can proactively identify potential health and safety issues, before it’s a cause for concern.
9. Cutting Down on Wasted Time and Delays
We’ve alluded to this throughout this article, but it’s worth reiterating: construction management software can significantly cut down on delays and wasted time, which directly ties into your overall budget. In fact, it’s probably one of the key advantages of using digital platforms.
From more accurate estimates to more detailed reports and dashboards that invite fewer questions, a robust construction project management app can truly maximize your efficiency and productivity. With better cross-collaboration and communication, construction teams will see shorter project lifecycles, which also benefits homeowners by letting them move in more quickly — leading to increased customer loyalty.
10. Preventing Loss and Waste
Industry data shows that over a third of global consumers will pay more for sustainability. There’s also a growing business case for companies to embed sustainability into their business model.
Construction management software can help Suppliers and Contractors keep better track of resources, supplies and equipment, minimizing loss and waste and maximizing all resources to the fullest. By using integrated ERP solutions, the complexity of managing a multi-stakeholder problem becomes easier with improved project management, translating to minimal loss of resources, material and labor.
The BuilderGM Solution
There’s a clear opportunity for companies to build resilience by embracing the advances of technology and digitization through construction management software. BuilderGM makes life easier for Home Builders through various automation and communication capabilities.
Scope out projects and deliver quotes quickly using BuilderGM’s built-in estimating tools. The software also streamlines vendor bidding, enabling you to send bids quickly and track bidding history.
Plus, BuilderGM makes construction finances a breeze; access your budget and projections from anywhere and reduce manual calculations. Our integration with QuickBooks also enables you to keep your books in sync and manage transactions with ease.
BuilderGM has the essential tools you need to stay on top of residential construction projects. That way, you can spend less time on low-level tasks and dedicate more energy to growing your business and keeping your clients happy.