It's a question that pops up from time to time. And it sounds legit. But, do you really want what you think you'll be getting?
Two separate software companies...
Two separate design teams...
Two separate histories...
and an often rickety bridge to connect the two!?
When it comes to construction software, integration = pain x frustration2
While it sounds good in theory, you are talking two very different and distinct applications.
The fact is, you have one system that is primarily "back office" and offline - your accounting system. For most folks in the construction industry, that would be Quickbooks. Accounting, payroll, some pretty sensitive information on your clients... do you really want that information floating through the Net !?
BuildIT recognized years ago there was a gap. Accounting software was nailed for the most part. And show me a contractor that doesn't use a spreadsheet to create estimates and manage budgets ~ most do. What about the part where tasks need to be managed, and information shared? What about the "slippery items" in your business, that if not dealt with, cost time, money and major aggravation? The gap was filled by a system to help schedule, manage information, (including spreadsheets) and augment back office systems already in place like your accounting software.
BuildIT fills that gap.
Your bookkeeper (admin staff) stays happy ~ they are already well entrenched with Quickbooks or whatever construction accounting package the company has settled on... and they aren't too keen on switching to something new written by contractors taking a shot at the world of accounting.
You stay happy, because you spent a bunch of hours creating some nifty spreadsheets that work ~ you just need a better way to share them with your team, manage them, track changes, and store them on a job by job basis. Plus you get scheduling improvements right out of the gate.
The gap is filled. Leave the "integration" thing for those much larger companies that need mid level or enterprise project management systems. For the rest of us (the overwhelming majority of contracting businesses), it's quite alright to have a separate "stand alone" system focused primarily on scheduling and collaboration.
Reminds me of a time when a friend attempted to "sync" his Salesforce.com contact database with his Outlook and then onto his Blackberry. All his contacts were deleted in the process. I was called in to lend a hand... and after trying to follow the "undelete" instructions, I realized why I had avoided making IT a profession!
Yup, syncing is not all its cracked up to be.
With a separate scheduling solution like BuildIT, life is easier for everyone involved. We can import data for you (your schedules, contacts, job list) and you can export data from BuildIT into CSV (comma separated values) files. We don't hold your data hostage - you're free to come and go as you please.
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