Article
If you’re an electrical contractor, you’ve likely developed a series of workarounds to help you handle business. Maybe you’ve got financial software to help you manage your checking account and invoicing. And maybe you’ve got apps to help track mileage and keep track of upcoming jobs and materials orders.

Words to Look for When Choosing New Construction Business Software

Chuck Ross
If you’re an electrical contractor, you’ve likely developed a series of workarounds to help you handle business. Maybe you’ve got financial software to help you manage your checking account and invoicing. And maybe you’ve got apps to help track mileage and keep track of upcoming jobs and materials orders. These options might be fine in the short run, but they also could hold your business back as it grows. A better approach could be a construction management package that brings all these functions together and is accessible when you need it, whether you’re using a laptop, smartphone or tablet.

One key word to look for in product descriptions is “integrated,” according to Victoria Satran, marketing vice president for the construction management software company Computer Guidance Corp. “’Integrated’ means that all the apps are on a single platform,” she explains. “If you make a change in one app, it shows up in all the others. Your whole construction business is tied together.”

So, for example, a check one of your employees receives from a customer could be entered just once to close out the job and be added to that month’s revenues for accounting and tax purposes. “You could be at a trailer at the job site or in your office at home,” Satran says. “It’s all in real time.”

Another feature to consider is where your business’s data will be stored – and here the word to look for is “cloud.” While you might be used to maintaining your own company server, a cloud-based approach could be both more efficient and safer over the long run. You’ll make it easier for users to access and manage information and you’ll have the peace of mind of knowing protocols will be in place to protect against hackers and ransomware attacks.

“The data center is probably the most secure you can get – it has uptime guarantees and the availability is almost 100%,” Satran says. “It’s far more secure than having individual systems in different buildings.”
Photo courtesy of Computer Guidance Corp.
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