5 Traits of a Perfect (Construction Software) Match
At first, it felt like nothing could go wrong. Your relationship with a certain special construction software seemed like it could build the entire world. There was no skyscraper too high, no tunnel too low and no design sets big enough to stop you.
But soon, the doubt set in. You started to notice little things that made you question the strength of your relationship. Your crew didn’t seem as enthused by how things are progressing. And there are certain complexities in the system that seemed harder and harder to brush off and move on from. Can you and your software really stand the test of time, or at least stick it out through the close of the project?
Choosing your ultimate construction software match is no easy feat. To build a tried and tested relationship, your software needs to have key attributes that set your business, project and team up for success. As the time of year when true love is put in the spotlight, we’ve created a quick quiz to determine if your construction software is your one and only project partner or an inevitable bad romance. Take our quiz and read below to learn about the top qualities of the perfect construction software match.
5 Qualities of True Construction Love
Face it. No relationship is perfect–even the one with your true construction software love. However, some qualities can make the difference between a fizzle and a flame.
1. Easy to Use
The statement “it’s complicated” is never good to hear in any relationship. Especially considering the inherently complex nature of a construction project, adding software that’s burdensome to a user is only going to make matters worse. Easy to use software is naturally intuitive. While the technology behind it is sophisticated, workers should have a very low barrier to get started with minimal training.
It’s also important to consider what the levels of complexity mean to different user profiles. For instance, busy field workers may be less patient than back office personnel. You need software to be simple to use for its core users across all the devices that they are using, whether it’s mobile devices or desktop computers. And how do you know if a construction software platform is actually easy to use? Simple; it’s being used.
Of course, there are more traits you should be looking for when evaluating if the software is easy to use. We’ve highlighted this in our recent blog, “5 Simple (Yet Powerful) Traits You Should Be Looking for in Construction Tech.”
2. A Team Player
If it’s being used, that’s a reliable indication that software is a good fit for your squad. Just as important is its ability to bring a team together. In construction, teams, data and communications are often siloed and disconnected. What might be written in an email, doesn’t necessarily get communicated down the line and what’s changes added to a spreadsheet might never even see the light of day from key stakeholders. It’s a burden to bring on more technology that adds more inefficient channels to work from.
The best construction software will facilitate collaboration and communication for the whole team. Typically, this means using cloud-based construction software that allows teams to access the most updated information they need, from anywhere.
3. Solves a Key Challenge
Ask yourself the following; are you getting what you need from your relationship? If you’re implementing software on a project for the sake of having it, you could be missing the point. You need to think carefully about the business needs and challenges where technology can fill the void.
So what challenges do you need software to solve? There’s no one right answer and as no solution can realistically solve all of your needs. However, it does help to understand if the solution helps your business scale in some way. For example, does it free your staff from administrative duties to get more done? Can you set up key workflows to move through project steps faster? Understanding the primary business challenges the solution addresses will help you understand if the relationship is meaningful enough to hold on to.
4. Returns the Love
No matter how you look at it, any good relationship is an investment. But the thing about an investment is that it should provide a return over time. In construction, the way to know if you are getting a return from your software is if you’re saving money, time and/or resources. If you can’t tie back any of these returns over time to your software, then it’s time to call it off.
It’s also helpful to understand just how much of a return you are also getting from your relationship with software. If it’s only minimal, it might not be worth pursuing in the long-term after all. Looking for a helpful guide to calculate your ROI from software, check out this ebook, “How to Calculate the ROI from Mobile Construction Apps.”
5. Gets Along with Other Software
In the construction software landscape, playing the field isn’t necessarily a bad thing. You might have other software solutions that you’re using on the side to fulfill crucial other business challenges. When it comes to using the best software, there’s no shame in using multiple niches and quality solutions. However, the last thing you want to do is leave data and information siloed and separate because of the lack of integration between your solutions.
If your software is a solid match for your company and projects, it will integrate with other solutions easily. Are you interested in learning more about game-changing construction software integrations? Take a look at this post.
Don’t Hold on to Digital Baggage
If we know deep down something isn’t right, why do we choose to stick it out? There are many reasons why technology fails. In a recent survey from PlanGrid and FMI, the top reasons why construction tech falls short of expectations were revealed. They include:
- A poor fit to begin with: 36% say tech doesn’t work with current processes
- Not well embraced: 25% find tech has a low adoption
- It’s complicated: 22% report tech is difficult to use
- Too much to nurture: 22% say tech has inadequate training
- Doesn’t play well with others: 22% find tech doesn’t integrate with existing solutions
If your software is exhibiting any of the above signs, it’s time to pull the plug and find another software as your main squeeze. There’s no use holding on and trying to make it work. Projects timelines are too short.
Build Your Best Relationship Yet With the Right Software
If you’ve been burned before or are scared to take the plunge into unknown software territory, you may need some additional guidance. If you’re looking to kick off your best relationship with software yet, download our helpful ebook, “Ultimate Buyer’s Guide to Construction Software.”