Skip to main content
July 9, 2024 - 3:37pm

Article written by Andy Holtmann on the Viewpoint blog.

How a connected, cloud-based construction solution brings timely, accurate job costing to the table to tackle today’s construction demands

As a contractor, quick, accurate job costing is critical to the success of your business.

Effective job costing compares what has been budgeted for your project in the estimating processes with actual costs as they occur on the project. From materials to equipment to subcontracts and vendors to the largest expense on most construction projects — labor, contractors typically track jobs costs by phase codes or cost codes. If you’re a heavy highway or civil contractor that deals with significant amounts of materials, you may use unit-based job costing or time and materials billing methods to measure your project’s actual versus estimated costs.

The closer to budgets that you can keep your project costs, the better for your bottom line. But that can be hard to do when the data collected is not hitting your project managers’ desks in real time.

Why Traditional Construction Job Costing Falls Short

The challenge that many contractors face today with job costing is that the traditional methods used to track costs, measure productivity and project progress and more simply are not capable of meeting modern project demands. Paper-based forms, spreadsheets, multiple standalone software programs with their own unique data sets and other cumbersome processes are what you have relied on for decades now to manage your construction projects. These processes, however, can take weeks’ worth of manual processing in order to properly collect and analyze the information well enough to provide a somewhat accurate insight into different phases or aspects of your project.

Identifying potential miscues, project risks, necessary project changes and additional costs with traditional job costing and project management processes, often meant that projects were moving into new phases before issues or problems were identified. If problems were large enough, that meant having to perform costly rework — sometimes at the expense of the contractor.

However, technology has changed the face of business worldwide, with data, workflows, financial transactions and much more being managed in the cloud. The process automation, real-time data algorithms, mobile accessibility and more that the cloud provides is reducing typical data and workflows processes from days or even weeks down to mere minutes.

This is why so many contractors have already moved to the cloud. Being able to not just retrieve, but process and analyze project data in real time, means that project managers, owners — entire project teams — can now see the results and accurately measure costs as they occur.

Get More Accurate Construction Job Costing

With modern technology comes new, modern expectations, plain and simple. Project owners expect your projects to be run efficiently, and they want accurate, timely progress reports. In fact, more and more contracts are being drafted requiring contractors to have modern construction management software or solutions that can provide real-time data and reporting. Similar requirements are becoming more common with government issued projects as well.

For you too as a contractor, a modern, connected construction management suite that leverages real-time data and cloud-based workflows has significant benefits. Not only are your field and back-office teams working from the same set of real-time data to keep project workflows moving, but you can spot issues and potential risks much faster, allowing you to act immediately. This can save your projects — and your project teams — significant time and money lost due to rework after the fact.

Furthermore, stronger data collection and assessment tools allow you to analyze your projects to uncover areas for continued improvement, help you better project future projects and close the profit fade gap that has long impacted the already razor-thin profit margins of so many construction firms.

Finally, your business continuity goes beyond just job costing. As the COVID pandemic has shown us, companies that were agile and able to pivot during lockdowns and new stringent safety procedures endured far less business strain than those without support of modern technologies. Having a cloud-based, connected construction management solution in place can empower all project stakeholders to adapt to changing business conditions, as well as properly scale your operations to meet future demands or meet the next unexpected challenge.

Request a Consultation

Fill out the form below to talk to our experts about how the right construction software can help you modernize.

What Our Clients Say

"It’s a pleasure working with Robert. He's very patient, knowledgeable and goes far beyond to help with any issues we have as a company or as an individual."

HL Contractors

"Greg is terrific, and I’m so excited to have a better resource! I have him working on several projects now with many more to come."

Progressive Plumbing

"We appreciate Tim and all of his excellent support."

M.J. (Manufacturing Firm)

"Beth is absolutely wonderful to work with! I appreciate her patience and professionalism. It’s a relief to know I can count on her to respond and be a life line for us as we continue to learn the system. She is truly top notch."

Eastbound Mechanical

"He did a great job online and an equally great job in person. We’re enjoying working with our new Spectrum Viewpoint accounting software."

Chambliss & Rabil Contractors, Inc.

"The level of service CDP provides is exceptional and always far exceeded my expectations. You can quote me on that!"

The Wesson Group LLC

"I want to let you know how grateful we are for Robert Pacheco’s assistance. He was able to meet with me and discuss the issue promptly and complete the fix within a short amount of time. He is surely an asset, and we are thankful to have such a great resource."

Marques General Engineering, Inc.

"I wanted to let you know Dan did a great job. He has a vast amount of knowledge, and I feel very fortunate to be working with him."

H.F. (Mechanical Contractor)

"Thank you for your assistance/responsiveness to assist us in getting P6 back online so quickly today. We appreciate all the support you provide."

M.J. (Manufacturing Firm)

"Michael and Matthew have exceeded my needs and expectations. I get help same day 95% of the time, which is very important in my business at times. They are professional and courteous 100% of the time. Zero complaints."

Mitchell Brothers

"Kristen is a very valuable resource for us!"

LCI-Lineberger Construction Inc.