Is Your Construction Company’s Software Ready for the Cloud?

By: Chris Haiss

When selecting accounting or project management software for your construction company, there’s a lot you have to consider. It can be difficult to figure out the right package that suits your needs. How do you choose the right one?

If you’re looking for something to simplify and expedite the daily processes in your construction company, we recommend looking at accounting systems that also have project management capabilities. Some popular software options can even offer both.

Once you identify the software that’s best for your company, you’ll need to decide whether you’re going to purchase or lease it, and where “it will live.”

Let’s look at three typical options and the upsides of each.

1. Purchase the On-Premise Package

We speak to a ton of construction companies that already have their own network server. If this is you, then consider purchasing the software outright.

Not only do you get immediate ownership of the software, but you’re also free from monthly payments. It can be a huge hassle to transfer data to a new system without owning the software.

Additionally, most people like the peace of mind of using their trusted IT team to manage their company’s data rather than a cloud provider. When purchasing the software and installing it locally, you’ll work with your IT team or managed service provider to ensure your network is secure, software is up to date and backups are being performed regularly.

2. Lease the Software through the Cloud or SaaS

In a study conducted by Gross Mendelsohn and the Maryland Construction Network, 81% of construction contractors said their company uses mobile technology. Cloud-based construction accounting systems are built so that the software can be used anywhere and everywhere. Your information is stored on the cloud provider’s secure servers and can be fully accessible by phone, tablet or computer.

Using the “Software as a Service,” or SaaS, option can be an extremely cost-effective option for construction companies that aren’t ready to commit to purchasing an accounting system in full. It’s an ideal situation for a smaller company that’s not quite ready to invest in their own server or pay the higher up-front cost associated with the on-premise package. You can sign on for a contract, let’s say for three or five years, with a reasonable monthly payment. Once the contract term is up, you can either renew the lease, let the lease expire or purchase in full. You can even start with the cloud version as a test drive of the software. This helps get a feel for if you'd like to purchase it for on premise use in the future.

3. Purchase the Software and Host It Elsewhere

Another variation of a construction accounting software purchase is to buy the license to the software and then rent the infrastructure required to run the software from another vendor. This is a huge benefit for companies that want to have the software purchased in full, but don’t have the infrastructure available to host it on premise. Even better? Once you obtain the right infrastructure down the road, it’s easy to switch from hosting elsewhere to installing on-premise.

Need Help?

Whether it’s helping you find the right construction accounting and project management software or working with your team to get everyone on the same page, Gross Mendelsohn’s Technology Solutions Group is here to help. Contact us here or call 410.685.5512 for help.

Published January 16, 2017

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