As the COVID-19 pandemic created disruptions worldwide, there was a paradigm shift in how businesses enabled their workforce to work comfortably and safely. Remote work became a norm in most domains. But the ones where the physical presence of the workforce was deemed necessary, like the construction industry, did not have this luxury of remote work management for most of its workers.
Notably, corporate functions within labor-intensive sectors like manufacturing and construction do have a great shot at continuing the remote trend. For example, the finance function within a construction organization today operates mostly via financial software applications. In theory, any job that relies on a computer can be transitioned to a remote one. But in the case of construction finance, this may not always be true. To reap the benefits of efficiency and seamless work convenience, construction companies need financial systems that go beyond the basics.
Let us explore 5 reasons why construction businesses shouldn’t be tied to restrictive software like QuickBooks when there are more flexible and efficient financial management systems available in the market.
QuickBooks Desktop Service Discontinuation
As of May 2022, QuickBooks has stopped its service support for all users of QuickBooks Desktop. The construction sector is often a laggard in terms of migrating to more advanced internet-powered solutions. Hence, a good majority of such businesses still rely on the on-premises solution. With the service support being discontinued, there is no option for them to seek assistance or live support should any issue arise.
Besides, the QuickBooks Desktop software has been around for decades, with most features becoming outdated in the process, primarily owing to the lack of internet-enabled data and information management capabilities. Now that the service support is discontinued, there is absolutely no reason for construction companies to stick with such legacy software that can significantly impact their digital ambitions.
Obstructs New Working Styles
The older software not only restricts construction companies with respect to features but also hinders the adoption of remote work models. In the new normal, when companies are finding it hard to hire skilled corporate talent, the elimination of remote work possibilities can hamper their talent acquisition goals considerably.
For millennial workers, flexibility in their jobs is a massive attraction on par with their salary. Hence, relying on restrictive legacy applications can result in construction companies losing out on the competition for skilled workers.
Also, it does not allow for easy collaboration across locations, job-sites, and between sites and the back-office. In effect, it introduces a built-in lag into the logging, tracking, monitoring, analysis, and reporting of crucial project-related financial reporting that could have major consequences. This could lead to delays in closing projects, slower reporting of financial numbers, and difficulty achieving compliance.
Cost of Operations
Many construction companies kept away from internet-enabled solutions for fear of escalating costs when they attempt to migrate to a new system from their legacy ones. But in reality, there are cloud-based or SaaS solutions that offer a subscription model of pricing that only bills the organization for the volume of service consumed.
SaaS solutions also allow businesses to scale seamlessly depending on their growth — thus, saving a lot of money by eliminating costly upfront investments that traditional software demands.
Construction companies usually rely on multiple tools like spreadsheet programs in addition to QuickBooks to manage different aspects of operations. Having too much manual work and having to commit to that with spreadsheet tools like Microsoft Excel can be a harrowing experience for corporate staff in finance functions.
Imagine getting features such as automatic data security, payroll management, interactive dashboards, etc., on your HR and administrative functions with just a small monthly or yearly fee. This is what modern SaaS solutions bring to the table. The difference in user experience is huge despite having a lower total cost of ownership thanks to the SaaS model of pricing.
The construction industry today deals with a diverse range of wage codes, labor contracts, union contracts, etc., with respect to pay and worker benefits. Additionally, they must meet local and national compliance and regulatory norms intended for worker welfare. So many conditions make managing payroll a highly challenging ordeal with software like QuickBooks, which is more geared towards general accounting principles.
However, modern cloud-based construction management solutions are built exclusively for the construction sector, and they have inherent frameworks that accommodate numerous labor codes and wage mechanisms into payroll features. This greatly relieves the finance team and drives greater automation of a significant corporate function like finance.
In a Nutshell
In short, construction companies must avoid relying on traditional and general accounting software like QuickBooks to manage their operations. They need a powerful end-to-end custom management system that can handle the dynamics of the industry without risks.
Financial systems that go beyond the basics will help construction companies eliminate inefficiencies and gain a significant advantage in labor relations and legal compliance.
Book a free demo with us today to learn more about the next generation of digital experiences in construction management.