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Making it easy for Home Builders
By Enabliser Howard
Computer systems for many companies, their ERP solutions, usually revolve around the accounting system. This is logical and works well for selling products and services, manufacturing, wholesaling, and retailing. But builders are different. They usually need a range of specialist add-ons to handle the requirements that make construction so special – plan takeoff and estimating, quoting, bidding/pricing materials, dealing with multiple sub-contractors and suppliers, quoting, scheduling, changes to spec and the weather, co-ordinating all this and the communications involved. Or they do it on spreadsheets. This is before we think about accounts payable and receivable, progress payments, retention. Talking to a home builder the other day, they had five different solutions to handle their building operations. And each one needed its own data entry, so the same data had to be entered into all these different solutions and spreadsheets. It’s not efficient.
There must be an easier way. There is. While it is theoretically possible to have a solution that could do everything in the one system, does it offer all the features, in the depth needed? There is another way, like having your cake and eating it, and works for home builders. Pick the best solutions for the specialist tasks, and plug them into a central hub that takes their data, manages the construction operations, and sends the data to the other modules; you only enter the details once. The solution is BuilderMT, developed originally in Australia for the needs of Australian builders, and so good that it moved to America and now builds the USA’s homes too. The company is now owned by Berkshire Hathaway, part of the Warren Buffett group – not a bad recommendation.
This innovative solution based around a hub gives the home builder great freedom – to use just the components they need, choose from a range of systems that integrate, plug in the ERP/accounting solution that meets their needs, either Sage 300 CRE (Timberline) or Microsoft Dynamics NAV, and you have a dynamic solution that expands with a home builder’s needs, adding new functions, and starts with the main operations all streamlined and efficient. If you want to streamline collaboration with suppliers and sub-contractors, add a Builder Portal for self-service access to their orders and even do away with having to issue purchase orders, you can give supervisors mobile access from the job site, or add 3D takeoff, or an advanced BIM system (Building Information Modelling) and give customers 3-D images of what you are quoting, or an innovative CRM - sales and marketing solution – specially for home builders…
For project home builders, BuilderMT can improve the bottom line by percentage points, handle pricing for different regions with different cost structures and streamline the communications required for multiple projects, plus variations and schedule changes. It’s easy to go broke without having the right systems; BuilderMT makes it easy to stay on top of your jobs and costs, improve margins. Sometimes life was meant to be easier.