Project management software has made an enormous impact on every industry since it first emerged in the 1980s. This technology has made it easier to view progress, plan and share information. Most project management software is fairly generic. Its design works for any kind of project in any industry – from producing movies to manufacturing cars or building houses. This flexibility is helpful, yet it means the technology does not always match the specific needs of each industry. And this is why we’ve been seeing a growing number of specialised kinds of PM software emerging in recent years. In the construction sector, in particular, we’ve seen many kinds of building and real estate project management software introduced over the last decade.

Why is this specialised technology useful for construction and real estate project managers?

Real estate management software in action on a mobile device and laptop.

Why real estate project managers need specialised tools

Each project in the construction, engineering and real estate industry is completely unique. Every build has specific control parameters and schedules, and real estate project managers must continually make decisions that can create multiple branching problems if they make a mistake.

Moreover, human factors also have a big impact on how projects proceed. As a consequence, many construction and real estate project managers find that standard project management software just doesn’t meet their needs.

What types of project management software are currently in use in the construction industry?

According to one study, three types of project management software are being used in the construction industry:

  • Basic scheduling (e.g. MS Project).
  • Complex project portfolio management systems (e.g., Primavera).
  • Software that integrates PM processes with on-site management (e.g., PlanRadar).

 

Let’s look at each of these types of real estate project management software in more detail.

Microsoft Project

Since its inception, MS Project has always been a popular tool among project managers but has never become the number one PM tool. This is especially true in the construction industry, where it has never entirely aligned with the industry’s unique processes and procedures.

Key functions:

  • Use pre-built project templates to make sure you’re on the right track right from the get-go
  • Familiar automated scheduling tools help reduce inefficiencies and training time.
  • You can also create multiple timelines, which make it easier to visualise complex schedules.
  • Visualisation tools help you understand how tasks relate to one another.
  • By running ‘what-if’ scenarios, you can make the most of your task assignments.

Primavera

The Primavera app is suitable for project-oriented and mature companies. While Primavera was once mainly used for handling large and complex projects, today it is also used for many projects valued at under USD $100,000.

Key functions:

  • Balance resource capacity
  • Plan, schedule, and control complex projects
  • Allocate the best resources and track progress
  • Monitor and visualize project performance versus plan
  • Conduct what-if analysis and analyse alternative project plans

PlanRadar

PlanRadar combines best in class project management software with site management tools that are attuned to the specific needs of construction sites.

Key functions:

  • Documentation can be completed directly on-site using a smartphone or tablet. In a single step, you can record videos, photographs, text, dates, voice memos and positions in the digital plan – even if your device is offline.
  • All defect orders are forwarded directly to the responsible contracting parties, along with a completion deadline and priority at the push of a button. All communication among the team is held centrally within the PlanRadar system or via e-mail.
  • The automatic logging system enables you to consistently control all processes at any time. You can also receive a complete report via the web application at the push of a button.
  • Comprehensive filter functions mean you can selectively view data that is relevant to you and also save your preferred filter settings.
  • View your latest stats on orders, defects and more at a glance. You can then export all data (Excel and PDF reports, images, voice memos) at any time.
  • Invite users to your projects.
  • Get notifications within PlanRadar as well as via e-mail about changes and new information.
  • Upload PDF and image plans to the app, and update them if needs be.

How stakeholders benefit from specialist real estate project management software

How do different project participants benefit from a specialised PM software like PlanRadar?

  • Architects:

Avoid ambiguities regarding changes to your designs. Any changes decided during a meeting are now recorded directly and digitally in the plan. You will never lose or forget your notes as they are safely stored in the Cloud. You can also upload new plan versions or BIM models and distribute them to the project team at the click of a button.

  • Planners and engineers:

Do your calculations mean there are changes to the design? By adding a ticket to the blueprint, you can share the information with the architect, to change the design, or to the contractor so that he can execute the changes on-site.

  • Project Manager:

PlanRadar establishes a project-related contact between all parties involved, which works independently of your actual deadlines. You can use the app to allocate tasks, request status updates and generate reports. Project management software makes it easier to identify and solve problems with a project.

  • Building inspectors:

PlanRadar lets you record all defect-related processes on the building site chronologically and store them in a cloud simply by using the app and any Android or iPhone. You can also instantly run reports for your clients.

  • Owner:

With PlanRadar you can register yourself as an observer on the app and keep track of all the events on your construction site. You can also regularly receive reports from your project team.

  • Construction supervision:

PlanRadar offers reliable construction documentation and defect management. It supplements your site diary and lets you keep track of deadlines and appointments quickly and easily. With PlanRadar, you can also stay in touch with each contractor.

  • Contractors:

PlanRadar makes it clear where and when you and your teams need to be currently working and eliminates ambiguity about timelines.

Ready for specialised real estate project management software?

If you are still using generic project management software, you could be missing out on serious productivity and efficiency gains. Specialised real estate project management software is designed for the industry’s needs. Using the right software can make your projects run much more smoothly while saving you time and money.

To see how, contact us for a demo today.