Running a construction business is not a walk in the park - whether you’re a founder of a new company or you’re taking the helm of your family business. Every day you are faced with an inordinate amount of information to gather, insights to generate, and decisions to make. And let’s face it – all of this takes a toll on you, and it could translate to working long hours each day and even on weekends.
Many of us live in cultures where being busy and working hard are thought to be keys to success. Also, as a business owner, you have employees’ salaries to take care of (and maybe even some loans to pay) so it’s totally understandable to give your all when it comes to running your business. However, at what cost? It’s no secret that there’s more to life than spending 16 hours a day to run your business. You have various roles to fulfill and various activities to partake in where work can get in the way. You have family, friends, hobbies, and other things that need your attention in order to have a truly well-rounded life.
The fact of the matter is: aside from the typical problems you face in every construction project, it is the limited visibility over all aspects of your company that really makes your day-to-day life seemingly unbearable. Dealing with piles of paperwork & emails, endless phone calls & video conferences, large spreadsheets, and logging on to multiple apps at once will not be sustainable, especially if you’re running multiple projects. Also, the constant firefighting and lack of time for strategic activities will stop you from growing your company.
There is a way to achieve a full and meaningful life while managing your construction company well and bringing it to greater heights. The answer lies in going digital.
Here are some steps on how you can reclaim your personal time by modernizing your construction company and leveraging digital technology to work much better. This also serves as a basic checklist when choosing construction management software. We’re not talking about a traditional ERP or accounting software here, a construction management software is a next-generation digital tool for owners and managers of construction businesses to run their companies better.
Centralize Data Gathering
As mentioned, the limited accessibility of key pieces of information can mean wasting time in data gathering. But in reality, you can get all the information you need – if it’s being gathered digitally and stored in one place. Even with existing systems in place, it can get overwhelming when you’re trying to assimilate data to make informed decisions in a timely manner.
What you need is a software that lets everyone reporting to you enter the data you need and organize/analyze it the way you need it. With almost everyone having access to mobile devices and data, this should not be difficult to have key stakeholders update records, file tickets/requests, and send project updates using a software that can be accessed with a smartphone or a tablet.
Improve Stakeholder Coordination
According to a 2019 HBR survey, most American professionals waste 28% of the workday on email tasks, translating to a staggering 2.6 hours spent and 120 messages received per day. Do take note that this doesn’t even take into account chat conversations via messaging apps, phone calls, and video conferences. When dealing with multiple construction projects, coordinating with internal (project team members, HQ managers, etc.) and external stakeholders (clients, subcontractors, suppliers) – this problem grows ten-fold.
A software that literally and figuratively brings all these stakeholders together in one place can definitely address this problem. Everyone is synchronized, details don’t fall into the cracks, and there’s also better overall transparency. This heightened coordination in your construction projects also works best for change orders and design changes because design and project teams are aligned with the deliverables at hand and you have better visibility of their progress.
Automate Your Workflows
In addition to organizing information-gathering and synchronizing construction activities, one time-wasting aspect of any company is paper-based workflows. Manual processing doesn’t just affect your team’s productivity - it also affects your ability to spend more time focusing on growth-inducing strategic tasks. There are so many tasks within each workflow that are repetitive, mundane, and error-prone that can be eliminated through automation.
You can do this by having a software that enables automated triggering of workflows and business rule-based automations. This essentially saves team members time in filling out request forms, it also saves your staff time from entering the data from one app to another, and ultimately, it saves you time approving several requests that could’ve been instantly approved. Streamlining your business processes through automated workflows is a sure-fire way to shave off so much time wasted in your company. While this may require some lead time to set up, it is definitely worth the effort in the long run.
Not Your Grandfather’s Construction Company
These are just some of the ways you can go digital and bring your company to the 21st century. As you may have inferred in this article, it’s not enough to invest in basic digital tools and have your IT team patch all these systems together to create a seamlessly connected organization. What you need is a holistic construction management software like Steer that gives you unbeatable visibility over your entire business (anytime, anywhere, and on any device) so you can do more in your business and in life.
With Steer, you will receive up-to-date information to quickly make smarter decisions, stay in control of business activities, resources, and schedules, and get more things done in a shorter amount of time.
There’s a lot more than Steer can do. Book a meeting with the Steer Team HERE so you can see how our construction management software can help you save time and have a well-rounded life. You can also subscribe to our newsletter Don’t forget to follow us on LinkedIn or Facebook to get more updates.