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Construction Software: Best-of-Breed or a mongrel dog

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Construction Software: Best-of-Breed or a mongrel dog

It’s becoming increasingly challenging for growing and mid-size businesses to find the right software systems. Particularly for the Construction Industry, with so many aspects of the company where you need to get the information right, or the results can be catastrophic.

In the past, there have been some excellent all-in-one systems for the Construction Industry, such as Sage CRE (formerly Timberline), Jobpac and Cheops. They have been around a long time and served us well, like the trusty old ute. The big issue is their core architecture is old and has not changed. They were even predating the Internet. The age of these software solutions leads to a lack of flexibility to properly leverage more modern technologies such as cloud applications, smartphones, mobile broadband, remote workforce etc. They rely on third-party products and extensions to extend to these areas, which can end up feeling quite clunky with old tech and new mixed together. The reality is that the perfect scenario of one system to do everything for a construction business has now become a Unicorn.

With the lack of a single solution, businesses are more and more seeking a Best-of-Breed environment where they use more focused applications for different aspects of the company. The accounting team will use a good accounting solution. The project team will use a specialised project management system. The HR team will use software specifically for that area of business. It’s great in theory; however, the problem is created where each system works in relative isolation. They all perform their task well, but unfortunately, you end up with silos of information and no single reliable source of truth. You also have the scenario where people have to enter the same information multiple times into different applications, which quite frankly is a waste of valuable time and prone to errors.  

To overcome this, these systems are often cobbled together with manual data imports and spreadsheets. This can also be time consuming and unreliable. What was intended to be a Best-of-Breed solution has turned out more like a mongrel dog. Regardless of how much love and affection you give it, you won’t be winning any prizes at the show.

Success in construction demands a seamless flow of information between Operations, Accounting and Payroll as they are all linked to the profitability of projects. A true Best-of-Breed solution not only require the best applications, but it also needs the best integration between the systems. 

That means a single point of entry and relevant information shared between systems without manual interaction. 

That way, everybody has full access to the accurate information they need when they need it. More importantly, people aren’t jumping between different software programs to get this information.

There’s an old saying in the world of sports, “a champion team is better than a team of champions”. You still need players good enough at their specific roles but all in sync and working together to achieve the best outcome. This applies just as much to software applications in business. 

Put simply, if you want to win, get the best systems in place and make sure they are all working together. Contact our team of experts to discuss how we can help your business thrive.