No doubt, managing construction projects is a heavy task – as a project manager, you must consistently stay at the top of the project and account for everything. Luckily, in today’s digital and technological age, companies can utilize many construction technologies to make project management more manageable, efficient, and effective.
On the job site, your workforce is the lifeblood of your projects – and this asset includes your subcontractors. As a result, general contractors or project managers need to figure out a way to get them to use software for construction management, especially if your organization is currently using one. However, many questions might be raised:
- What if you want your subcontractors to use a specific project management software?
- How safe, secure, and private is the new system?
- Can the subcontractor keep private information from getting into the wrong hands?
This article discusses getting your subcontractors onboard using your current software and technologies. But first, let us dive in on the vital role of subcontractors in your project – and company’s – success.
The Vital Role of Subcontractors in Delivering Successful Construction Projects
As a modern project manager, you spend a lot of time improving your team’s dynamics to ensure that the construction project progresses smoothly and is on track with the schedules and budgets. The construction team comprises a diverse workforce – architects, engineers, managers, onsite crew members, and subcontractors – who must work together to deliver exceptional and successful outcomes.
While your full-time employees work for you and only you on a consistent, well-defined schedule, your subcontractors come and go based on your seasonal needs and availability. However, they are an essential part of your diverse team, and they help you meet a technical scope of work and give valuable insights on how to get the job done quickly and satisfactorily.
How Software Can Improve Communication and Collaboration with Your Subcontractors
Over the years, many digital and technological advances have helped shape the construction industry. One significant improvement in construction management is utilizing the software. It can help you keep track of all the information about a project and its costs. You can also access updated information at a simple glance, including timelines, requirements for contracts and materials, and compliance issues.
Every contractor and subcontractor has its business processes. However, working together towards a single goal requires openness, communication, and teamwork. As a result, the more extended the two groups have worked together, the more similar their business methods become. This is a natural result of each side trying to improve their business to fit with the other side.
Since these are long-term partnerships, it makes sense for both sides to use the same project management software. You can get quick access to the same information resulting in better communication and collaboration.
Sometimes, all it takes to get on the same page is to talk about things and work through the details.
Why You Should Get Your Subcontractors Onboard Your Current Construction Software
The success of a construction project depends on how well subcontractors are brought on board. Without a comprehensive onboarding process, it is possible that subcontractors or any other third-party workforce will not be able to get the company-, project-or trade-specific information and training they need.
So, an onboarding program should not be considered a cost but an investment. It is an easy, quick, and efficient way to get the team up to speed with the technology or software. At first, getting your team to try something new can be challenging, but the stakes can be high when technology is used correctly.
How to Onboard Your Subcontractors Efficiently and Effectively
Most software for managing construction projects is technical, which makes it hard for teams to understand and utilize. It is a significant loss on your side when you spend thousands of dollars on software, and it does not work how you picture it.
So, the main question is, how and where do you start? You could try out these five straightforward steps to improve your onboarding flow.
Set Expectations and Explain Necessary Information
Suppose you require specific construction management software for subcontractors to advise them during the bidding process, set expectations for them, and manage your relationships with them. Subcontractors are required to take into account how the requirement will impact them when making their decision on whether or not to submit a bid on the project. They need to be aware of any additional requirements well in advance so they may incorporate them into their project planning alongside their other requirements.
Create a Cohesive Onboarding Plan
Before you turn on your new software, take the time to learn about its features and how it works. Depending on your company’s needs, there may be some features that you will “turn off” since a third party will be accessing the software or putting more emphasis on it. You should figure that out in advance so you do not waste time and energy teaching people about parts of the software they do not need to know.
Layout the Benefits of Using a Software
It is not enough for subcontractors to know what software to use; they need to learn more. You should be able to demonstrate its usefulness and how it can dramatically boost productivity and make workflow more efficient. Teamwork and communication are catapulted to new heights when everyone utilizes the same system. Additionally, the productivity and quality of subcontractors will immediately improve as a direct result of this, as employees will have access to accurate information at the appropriate moment.
Identify All of The Software’s Features
The following demonstrates how the software will significantly impact the company’s day-to-day operations. Show them your account and its features; for example, can it be used as software for tracking the amount of time spent on building projects or as a tool for managing inventory? Because everything related to project management is contained in a single location, it simplifies and streamlines many complex and time-consuming processes that need to be done.
Demonstrate How It Can Add Value to The Organization
If you or the owner selected the appropriate software for managing projects, it should already come with user training. However, you should also prepare a support strategy to increase the likelihood that the deployment of a project will be successful.
The company’s contact information and other training material are the most important. You can dedicate a staff member solely responsible for providing users with training and resolving issues arising when using the program.
Develop Resources and Additional Content
In line with the idea of making a library of common scenarios for testing and training, you could make your content to help the transition of using the software. Most crew members like to learn independently, so having articles or simple instructional videos can help show how to do these tasks and navigate around the software from start to finish in the way your business needs. As a feature works, you can change, replace, or add to these resources to stay current.
Check Your Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
Find out how the software affects the project results and share that information with the subcontractors. You can easily communicate with them about any changes they see and ensure that this information is shared regularly with everyone involved in the project. It is also essential to deal with problems with the software quickly and directly. Having a quick reflex in solving tasks lets you have the best chance of keeping harmful effects to a minimum and keeping people’s faith in the software technology. Owners focus more on improving project productivity and outcomes. Taking note of your key performance indicators can help you further perfect your processes and change how you manage your projects.
Many construction companies invest in software to help them stay organized. However, getting people to use new technology how it’s supposed to be used can be challenging. Even if the new software can help your team do everything they need during the day, sometimes employees hesitate to use it because they find it hard to understand. Or maybe, they are just used to doing things the traditional way – pen, paper, or spreadsheets. However, when people are forced to use new technologies, they often feel frustrated because the new technology does not work the way they thought it would or should.
Change is hard, especially when it takes time to get used to. The best way to get new software to work is to give your team the tools they need from the start to help your business change and get better. When you realize how important it is to use technology, like a subcontractor construction management tool, it can significantly add value to your company and boost its profitability. Pro Crew Schedule offers powerful features with an easy-to-use interface that helps general contractors, subcontractors, and project managers effectively handle and manage projects.