The economy is doing great and many construction companies are reaping the benefits. According to the statistics portal, Statista, in 2017 new construction in the United States was valued at 1.23 trillion dollars, up from 788 billion dollars in 2011 when construction spending reached the lowest level in a decade. The industry is on track to continue its growth and is expected to generate some 1.5 trillion dollars in revenue by 2022.
If you’re one of the fortunate businesses riding the economy high tide, how do you sustain continued growth, and how do you continue to increase revenue when the business climate slows down? And if your business is not experiencing increased revenue right now, how do you get there?
A common thread in the successful contractors we’ve talked to is that they’ve implemented a CRM system. Here are some reasons why:
- Putting in new CRM software (or any business critical software for that matter) forces a business to document, review, and evaluate their mission-critical processes. Integrating and automating best practices improves efficiency and increases margins. Anyone will tell you this is a painful process, but well worth it in the end.
- The need for centralized data among the sales and estimating teams is important. Organizations that are better able to manage their opportunities have a competitive advantage; they know what business is closed, what business is going to hit soon, and can more accurately forecast job and labor costs.
- Data provided by a CRM system is no crystal ball, but it will give you a jump over the competition with decisions in purchasing/inventory, earlier project staffing and hiring decisions (having a hard time finding good talent lately?), and many other areas. Centralized CRM data also improves communication between the sales and estimating teams by automatically documenting and sharing emails, follow-up calls and activities.
- We know construction companies have multiple systems. A system for estimating, a tool for quoting, Excel spreadsheets for just about everything, email for sending documents, and a separate system to keep track of job costs and accounting. Profitable and growing companies report that streamlining processes and eliminating the need to rekey information in multiple places saves money, time, and improves customer satisfaction. A good CRM program allows you to manage and store estimates, automate quotes, generate and archive email and other communication – all of which should seamlessly convert when a job is won – automatically creating budgets, purchase orders and invoices. Depending on the size and number of jobs your business deals with, the savings could be huge — potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars!
- Project Tracking. What does CRM have to do with projects? What we’re talking about here is CRM specifically meant for contractors. It’s different from CRM for other industries because it is project driven. We see more and more successful contractors wanting to connect all the dots around a project including contacts, companies and opportunities. For example, they want to see the architect, engineer, owner, general contractor and all the quotes associated with the project in one place. This 360-degree view shows the markets, companies and people that produce the most revenue and can help direct where to spend time in the future. This type of strategic decision making on opportunities and bids can increase revenue significantly. Good CRM data helps you know where your team spends time finding business, and eliminates the cost of not pursuing the best projects.
There are many other benefits of CRM that might fit your needs — like improving marketing efforts, improving service, or calculating complicated commission payouts to attract a better sales team.
Whatever your revenue goals are, CRM for contractors can help you achieve them. Finding the right solution to help you achieve those goals are critical. Contact us, we can help.