Digital Builder

Must-Have Construction Software Buyer’s Guide & Checklist

Software buyer's checklist

If you’re on the hunt for new construction management software, you’ve probably noticed that there are more options than ever. Research analysts predict that construction technology tools will continue to see steady growth until 2025. With the market being flooded with an overwhelming number of options, construction firms need to be strategic when it comes to picking software solutions that provide a return on investment. And “investment” is the key word to remember, rather than evaluating construction software as a one-time buy. 

Fortunately, we’ve released a new construction software buyer’s guide to help you successfully evaluate and choose the right tools for your firm. 

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Pair our buyer’s guide with this checklist to jump start the evaluation process and select the best construction software to fit your needs. Download the free checklist now to get started. 

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What are some must-haves when selecting construction software?

Cloud-based with Centralized Data

As a top priority, your construction software should be cloud-based. This is a key element of modern collaboration in construction. Firms that have adopted cloud-based construction software reap the benefits of streamlined workflows, greater productivity, and higher visibility into their projects. 

What makes choosing a solution in the cloud so essential? Cloud-based software works from anywhere, reflecting the way people work today. Teams can work collaboratively in real time, or even offline when in remote locations. And as soon as you’re connected again, all your work will sync seamlessly to the project. Using cloud services isn’t only about data storage and digitizing workflows. It’s about embracing a new way of working—one where accessibility, automation, and collaboration come first. 

Instead of manually moving documents to and from the cloud, your team will work together on improving existing processes and workflows, allowing for greater efficiency and less waste. 

Made for Mobile

Construction teams are always on the go. Whether you’re in the field or in an office, you’ll probably still move between multiple locations throughout the day. You should be able to take your work with you and access it on the go. For teams in the field, it’s especially important to have mobile access to documents, as well as advanced functionality to collaborate in real time. 

When searching for construction management software, make sure it’s natively mobile. That means the solution was purpose-built for mobile devices. If you pick a solution that isn’t built for mobile devices, you’ll find it is too difficult for teams to adopt and use. Tools that are built for desktop and then retrofitted to work for mobile don’t provide a seamless, intuitive user experience. Simply put, tools that are difficult to use are far less likely to be adopted by your team.

Easy-to-Use with Intuitive Interface

Make sure your construction software has an intuitive interface. It must be easy to use. Solutions that require extensive training for mastery only cause frustration, even for power users. Your teams will be relying on this software, often on the go, so accessing important information must be simple and fast. Look for construction software that makes it easy for your team to input data, provide updates, and exchange project-critical information. 

Look for a Connected Cloud Environment

As your firm grows, your technology needs will evolve, and your construction management software needs to support that growth. To make scalability possible, avoid using disconnected point solutions that put critical data into silos. But we’re talking about more than just a cloud-based solution here. Rather, you want to look for a more comprehensive construction software solution that connects all your processes with a single environment. With so many workflows in construction relying on accurate, real-time data, when decision-making matters most, you want to respond quickly. However, it can take days, weeks or even months to clean, compile and analyze project-critical data. No one wants to halt a project because a decision can’t be made.

Your ideal cloud environment for construction will bring all of your key project data into a single source. Whichever tool you choose should leverage what is called a common data environment, or CDE. This serves as your foundation for more profitable projects because everyone—from design and planning to construction and handover—is looking at the same reliable data to make decisions. You’ll be able to review insights, analyze data, collaborate with stakeholders, and make accurate forecasts. The right solution for your firm not only works today, but far into the future. 

Supports Robust Integrations

With the sheer volume of technology supporting the industry today, the truth is there’s no single solution that can “do it all”. Identifying a software partner that supports a robust integration ecosystem is important, but must also provide meaningful ways to share data across all your teams’ tools.

If data cannot be shared in a useful way, or made accessible in a practical format, your integrations are more likely to hold you back. On top of that, you’ll want integrations that are actively supported for years to come as the industry, and your own technology needs evolve.

Backed by Cutting-edge Technology 

In the future of construction, we’ll continue to see predictive analytics, machine learning, and AI play a significant role. The best construction software solutions integrate these advancements into their technology ecosystem so you can quickly convert data into actionable insights.

Partnership with Your Software Solution Provider

You need more than ‘just a software solution’ to stay competitive and extract the most value out of your project data. Additionally, your software provider should serve as a partner who is invested in your long-term success. They’ll be there as a guide and educator, offering training and support whenever questions come up.

Download the Buyer’s Guide Today

These features are all essential in a construction management software solution. To learn more about evaluating construction software and round out your list of must-haves, download our buyer’s guide and checklist. 

Download Buyer’s Guide

Download Checklist

Eric Thomas

Manager, Construction Thought Leadership at Autodesk + Host of Autodesk's Digital Builder Podcast

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