When the Tacoma Narrows Bridge in Pierce County, Washington, opened to traffic on July 1, 1940, it was celebrated as the third largest suspension span on earth. However, the celebration was short-lived as part of the bridge collapsed only four months later. The bridge became a symbol of what a construction project gone bad looks like.
Even though the Tacoma Narrows Bridge was well-constructed, the engineers had not properly considered the effect of aerodynamic forces in a windstorm. The Tacoma bridge disaster shows that managing a construction project is a difficult task that requires the construction project manager to balance various elements.
Whether you are a project manager for a specialty contractor, general contractor, small construction business, or subcontractor, you need to manage various aspects of the project. These include job costs, invoicing, budgeting, purchase orders, communicating and arranging meetings with different stakeholders and team members, time tracking, bid management, and daily logs.
Fortunately, we are no longer in 1940. Today’s construction professionals and project teams have various software solutions and construction management tools to reduce the risk of their projects collapsing four months after completion. This article focuses on some of the best online construction project management software tools I could find in the market this year.
Here’s a shortlist of the best construction management software:
- Neo Intelligence
- The Power Tools
Construction Project Management Software Comparison Criteria
What do I look for when I select the best construction project management tools? Here’s a summary of my evaluation criteria:
User Interface (UI): Is it clean and attractive? Here, I am always looking for a tool that makes it easy to move from one window to another, whether I am working on a desktop or a mobile app.
Usability: Is it easy to learn and master? Does the company offer good tech support, customer support, tutorials, and training? In this case, I am looking for a tool that streamlines and automates processes, minimizes the risk of making an error, and alerts me if I have made a mistake.
Integrations: Is it easy to connect with other tools? Any pre-built integrations? Integrations ensure that I can incorporate the tool that I have selected into other tools I already use, like accounting software, in case the tool doesn’t have all the features I need.
Value for $: How appropriate is the price for the features, capabilities, and use case? Is pricing clear, transparent, and flexible? I look for a product that assists construction companies in achieving more while doing less.
Construction Management Key Features
When looking for construction management software, there are many features I consider a must, including these seven:
Document management and storage: Every construction project involves a massive collection of documents shared by the project owner, preconstruction teams, field teams, and other interested parties. Therefore, I need a tool that can help me store and retrieve documents pertaining to the entire project easily.
Submittals: An architect always wants to ensure that the construction process uses the correct products and materials. Consequently, contractors submit information about materials and equipment they will use before purchasing them. A good tool would have functionality facilitating these submittals.
Workload Assignments: In the project life cycle, it’s vital to be clear about who is doing what and who did what. This ensures that when I meet challenges or issues that need to be addressed, I know whom to go to. Thus, I need a task management feature that helps me manage workflows.
Tracking: I want a tool that provides daily logs to track project progress in real-time.
Change orders requests: This function allows various parties involved in the project to submit proposed changes to the latest project plan.
Reporting: This ensures that I have a summary of what is happening in different parts of the project. A tool with this feature can assist you in determining where resources are being used and where they are needed most.
Team Collaboration: In construction projects, various stakeholders need to communicate and request information or additional details. I am looking for a tool that facilitates collaboration in a single place.
Overviews Of The 10 Best Online Construction Project Management Software
Here’s a brief description of each online construction project management software to showcase each tool’s best use case, some noteworthy features, and screenshots to give a snapshot of the interface.
1. TopBuilder – Best for subcontractors
The developers of TopBuilder indicate that their software solution is designed for home builders, real estate professionals, new home sales agents, and general contractors. TopBuilder helps these professionals to accomplish preconstruction, sales, and marketing tasks by taking care of the repetitive admin tasks.
One of the best TopBuilder features is that it allows you to track your bids. This makes the software an excellent tool for subcontractors who want to ensure that they keep tabs on the projects they are bidding for, meet project scheduling requirements, and keep job costs low, in the process improving the bottom line. Another feature that makes this an excellent tool for subcontractors is that it provides monthly revenue cash projections.
TopBuilder integrates with BDX, Realtor.com, Zillow, Trulia, Mark Systems, and AtlasRTX. It costs from $35/user/month and offers a free demo.
2. CrewTracks – Best for construction project human resources management
CrewTracks helps teams in the construction industry manage field crews digitally. Its scheduling and dispatch features make it possible to communicate with teams in the field and collect administrative data. Using this tool, you can also assign jobs to team leaders and crews.
One feature that I find extremely useful with this tool is the mobile app that facilitates information sharing. Using the app, crews can clock in for work and report injuries. If you have tasks that need to be monitored, you can use the app’s GPS feature. Added to this, the application provides details like the weather and stores job photos and notes.
CrewTracks integrates with accounting software tools, including QuickBooks, and other software such as CompuEase, Foundation, and Sage 300cloud.
CrewTracks costs from $10-25/person/month, depending on the features you need. They offer a free demo to help you decide.
3. Yookkan – Best free construction project management software
When you look at Yookkan’s ease of use, it becomes clear that the tool is designed for individuals that are new to construction project management. The tool’s automated Gantt chart allows you to view key actions, dates, and milestones. The automated project summary dashboards help you determine how much progress individuals and groups have made, and track time allocated, costs, and risks.
One of the most useful Yookkan features is multiple tracking, available on the multitracking dashboard. The multitracking dashboard makes it easier to place each project within the context of the bigger picture and determine what needs to be prioritized. Added to this, you can use this tool for planning meetings and managing risks.
Yookkan integrates with Microsoft Outlook, Google Calendar, and iCal.
Yookkan costs from $6/user/month and offers a free version as well as a free trial of all the paid plans.
4. Neo Intelligence – Best digital construction site diary
Neo Intelligence seems to have every feature required by project managers focusing specifically on the operations side of construction. The app facilitates staff communication, enabling managers to send bulk SMS, allocate job site tasks, and give instructions to the staff. Other features include site diary management with the ability to add images, drawings, and notes that update in the cloud in real-time.
I have this tool on my top ten list of the best online construction management software because of its possibilities when it comes to managing every operations aspect of a project. For instance, it delivers timesheets as soon as employees clock in for work, automating the payroll and ensuring that all employees are paid according to time worked.
Neo Intelligence integrates with Jobpac, Vista, simPRO, Workbench, and CAT Projects, among others.
Neo Intelligence does not provide pricing details, but you can request a free demo by contacting the company.
5. The Power Tools – Best for connecting the construction accounting team with other project teams
The Power Tools is software designed to ensure a flow of information between the construction accounting team and other sections of a construction project. The SaaS software has several modules, including Accounting, Payroll, JCPM, Bid Solicitation, Estimating, Work Orders, Equipment, Lien Tracking, Apps, and Calendar.
The Power Tools is an excellent tool because it’s backed by a team that will do everything in its power to ensure that the tool is customized to your exact needs. The tool is also an extensive package, ensuring that you don’t move between many tools to accomplish distinct tasks.
The Power Tools integrates with Microsoft Outlook.
You can contact the company to get an idea of its price plans and schedule a demo.
6. 123Worx – Best enterprise-grade construction management tool
It’s easy for a software provider to promise “solutions for every project.” The challenge comes in living up to this promise. When you look at the various modules available with 123Worx, it’s clear that the software lives up to the promise. It provides a complete suite of modules for a construction business, including business management, project management, collaboration management, and productivity and management tools.
123Worx deserves to be on any top list because it is a comprehensive tool. The tool helps teams accomplish any task in the construction industry you can think of: request for information (RFI), submittals, estimating, punch lists, change order management, CRM, and project management. Users can fully customize the software to meet the specific needs of any business.
123Worx integrates with Microsoft 365, Gmail, Quickbooks Accountant, Calendly, SendGrid, and Google Maps. 123Worx Enterprise boasts integration with your company’s existing ERP system using industry-standard API as well as other off-the-shelf apps, making it a competitive choice between their offerings.
123Worx offers multiple pricing plans, and you will need to contact the company to find out what each plan costs. You can also request a free demo.
7. JobNimbus – Best for integrations
One of the biggest challenges faced by construction companies is to have everybody reading from the same page. JobNimbus is designed to mitigate this challenge and ensure that all teams have a central place where they can discuss and determine the details of any project. With the correct information, teams can move faster because they don’t have to wait for someone to clarify something.
The best thing about JobNimbus is that the software is designed specifically for the construction industry. But aren’t they all? If you look at most of the software targeting the construction industry, you will notice that they are made to work in all sectors. This means that you have to do much tweaking and compromising to get the software to work for your construction business. With JobNimbus, you don’t have this problem.
JobNimbus integrates with Quickbooks, Beacon, EagleView, SalesRabbit, CompanyCam, Google Calendar, Accurence, naturalForms, Podium, and Xactware. You can also connect to hundreds of apps with a paid plan through Zapier. This makes them an excellent choice for integrations.
JobNimbus offers customized packages and a 14-day free trial.
8. Fieldwire – Best for generating construction project reports
The designers of Fieldwire identify three core use cases for their software: using collaborative markups for managing different versions of plans, tracking issues using checklists, 360-degree photos and annotations, and task scheduling and management. Fieldwire gathers information and uses it to create easy-to-understand project activity reports.
One of the great features of Fieldwire is that it is built to work efficiently both online and offline. This means that teams do not stop collaborating when facing network issues or when in places that don’t have a network at all. This software saves time because it can replace existing drawing sheets with new versions together with all hyperlinks and markups.
Fieldwire integrates with Google Drive, Microsoft Excel, Dropbox Business, and Box.
Fieldwire costs from $29/user/month and offers a forever-free plan for small businesses with up to five users.
9. monday.com – Best for project timeline visualizations
Without proper communication and collaboration, it becomes a struggle for a construction business to know what is happening in the project’s different parts. This is the challenge that the developers of monday.com have solved. The tool visually informs everyone what they are supposed to be working on when they are expected to deliver specific tasks, and what conversations are happening about the job.
One of the reasons monday.com will always make it into any credible list of the best project management software is that it is easy to set up and use. The ease of use can be accredited to its hundreds of customizable visual templates. monday.com offers customer support 24/7.
monday.com integrates with Google Sheets, Facebook Lead Ads, HubSpot, Salesforce, Slack, Google Calendar, Gmail, Google Forums, and Calendly, among others.
monday.com costs from $8/user/month and offers a free plan limited to two seats.
10. Procore – Best for connecting stakeholders with the project owner
Anyone who doubts the developers of Procore when they say that their software is a great construction management software possibly hasn’t seen the tool’s various modules. The software has specific modules designed for the construction company owner, general contractor, or specialty contractor. This means that the tool doesn’t attempt to lump everyone into the same group hoping that they would find some features that work for them.
Procore is an excellent online construction management solution because it comes with tools covering every aspect of the construction business. These tools include project management, project financials, quality and safety, design coordination, invoice management, and bid management.
Procore integrates with Bluebeam, Microsoft Project, Oracle Primavera, Sage 100, Smartsheets, Smartvid.io, Zoom, and another 300 apps.
Procore offers an unlimited user plan based on your company profile. You can contact the company for a free demo.
Other Online Construction Management Software Options
Here are a few more that didn’t make the top list.
Autodesk Construction Cloud – Best iOs and Android apps
Jobber – Best for construction projects administration tasks
Bridgit Bench – Best for construction project workforce planning
Service Titan – Best for HVAC, plumbing, and electrical firms
Vizzn – Best for construction project dispatch and scheduling
Wrike – Best for construction companies in a fast-changing environment
InEight – Best for improving construction project staff utilization
ProjectSight – Best for job costing, budget, and cost management
Revizto – Best for construction project issue tracking
BuildBook – Best for construction business sales and marketing teams
LaborChart – Best for managing the employee database
Spectrum – Best for document and drawing management
Bosch RefinemySite – Best for teams following the lean principle
Houzz Pro – Best for remodelers
eSUB – Best for field reporting and tracking
RedTeam – Best for managing construction documents and contracts
Coconstruct – Best for home builders
Buildertrend – Best for managing complex construction projects
What Do You Think About These Construction Project Management Tools?
Have you used any of the online construction project management tools we feature above in your construction project? If so, how did the tool improve your processes and your bottom line? Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section.
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