Relationships are the long-running backbone of the construction industry. Historically, construction projects have been overwhelmingly awarded to contractors and organizations that the owner has previously worked with. When large amounts of money are involved, projects are likely to land with a company that has a proven track record of success. A construction company that delivers a project successfully is going to leave the client with a solid good impression and a strong measure of trust. This helps to win repeat business. Winning a project with a new client requires selling them on your experience on similar projects. The best way to do this is by using a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) program to develop your construction business and impress new clients.
What’s CRM for construction businesses
CRM is a cloud-based service that places vital information such as relationship, opportunity, lead and communication data (for a past or prospective client) at your fingertips. With this critical information easily accessible by your entire team, the process of building client relationships, submitting bids, and closing deals becomes a significantly more streamlined and effective process.
Many construction businesses rely on several unconnected programs, such as Outlook and Excel, to record and store this type of data. However, these programs don’t speak to each other, so critical points of contact and opportunities can be lost along the way. According to Software Advice, 74% of CRM users experience improved access to client data, and 47% report a significant, positive impact on their client retention.
RedTeam Flex has construction-specific CRM software built into our construction management platform, because we recognize how invaluable these tools are to today’s construction industry executives and business development teams. Our CRM feature can help you build on past relationships and help you win new clients as you grow your business.
Build client relationships with RedTeam Flex’s CRM
The primary goal of a CRM program is to help you build confidence and loyalty with your current and prospective clients. The key feature of CRM software is the cohesive, cloud-based organization that allows customer-centric data to be easily accessed by all of your team members. In larger organizations, it used to be that key team members held vital client network-mapping information. This would include everyone from owners to partners to engineers and architects, plus contractors, subcontractors, reps, consultants, personnel and others. It’s a lot to keep up with. With CRM software, if one of the key team members leaves your organization, the information doesn’t get lost in the transition—it remains in your cloud data.
RedTeam Flex’s CRM tool builds on this with additional features to enhance the specific needs of construction customer relationship management. Our tool will help you manage leads and track your interactions with a potential client or project opportunity. Each interaction has an “author” who creates the event and every participant who interacts is recorded. The date and the type of interaction (phone call, email, in-person meeting, etc) are noted. Comments on the interaction can be entered for all team members to view. Each interaction can be assigned to a campaign, customer and opportunity. As a bonus, this info can be automatically converted when you are ready to prepare a bid. Every event related to a project opportunity is recorded, as well as your team’s prior experience with the account, to build a strong customer relationship. An integrated calendar helps tie all of this data together.
The beauty of this tool is that you can come back to any interaction, opportunity, or lead to review historical client relationship data. That data can be leveraged for the next interaction or opportunity. No more missing gaps in information from one team member to the next. Where one left off, another can seamlessly pick up. Your client will experience an impressively smooth string of interactions with your team.
Using CRM to create proposals and win the job
This is where RedTeam Flex’s fully integrated solution really shines. We bring together the capabilities of strong customer relationship management and collaborative productivity tools.
In the bid qualification stage of a project, you need to sell your experience to land a project with a new customer. With CRM software, you have an easily referenceable library of your past projects to choose from to prepare the best possible proposal. Selecting an optimal previous project to reference for preparing a proposal on a new project is easy. RedTeam Flex allows you to view the list of all prior bids and projects you have done for a particular customer and also allows you to search for various bids and projects with similar scopes of work if you are putting a bid together for a new potential customer and you need historical data to demonstrate your capabilities. The efficiency and cost savings are remarkable when you don’t have to dig through numerous project files and documents scattered throughout your computer—or your company—and compare them by hand. Since you have already been tracking all of your interactions with an opportunity or upcoming project, you’ll have a converted bid ready to go in no time at all.
Using proposal metadata, you’ll be able to see when the proposal has been opened by the client. Try to send them an email within five minutes. Companies are 100 times more likely to get in touch with a prospect if they receive a contact within 5 minutes of opening a proposal. This is a significant competitive advantage.
Construction business development with CRM software
Regarding growing your construction business, CRM pays for itself many times over. According to Construction Executive, a CRM program can decrease the time it takes to close a new business opportunity by 43%. Construction-specific CRMs, like RedTeam Flex’s, are crucial to gaining every advantage.
By automating many of the administrative tasks for your team, your business will run much more efficiently, which leads to increased profitability. Using CRM software will also reduce stress caused by scrambling to find and compare documents scattered across several different programs while trying to prepare bids. Your business development teams can save hours of work and focus on bidding, negotiating and closing deals. This provides a better quality of life and higher job satisfaction, which will also help reduce turnover (and the associated costs) within your team.
By leveraging the customer-centric data you have collected in the various features of RedTeam Flex’s CRM tool, your team can focus on the partnerships and leads that historically produced the most work. You’ll save time, money and other resources by bidding on the most profitable projects for your business. You can use the opportunity management feature to watch an unlimited number of project opportunities. This feature allows you to compare your competitive score with other contractors, and select which opportunities you’d like to pursue more aggressively.
Additional RedTeam Flex features that assist CRM
Another set of standout features are the built-in software integrations that are possible in RedTeam Flex. RedTeam Flex for QuickBooks Online has everything you need from industry-leading Quickbooks to provide a complete construction accounting platform, from contracts to change orders to employee expenses, revenue recognition, real-time WIP reporting and more. The Sage 100 and Sage 300 CRE integrations provide your team with crucial financial information for project management. They also eliminate duplicate data entry, streamlining the process between operations and accounting. There’s a Levelset integration to generate, track, and collect lien waivers with excellent data integrity and considerable time and cost savings. The DocuSign integration allows for seamless execution and tracking of contracts.
The effortless transition between these software integrations and the RedTeam Flex platform will improve your business’ efficiency and allow for smooth day-to-day operations on and off the jobsite. You can have confidence in the security and integrity of your data, and your prospective client will be pleased at the transparency that you can promise to provide at every stage of the process — from the proposal to the handoff. RedTeam Flex’s construction management platform was designed and built by construction professionals, so we understand the needs that your growing business faces. Watch a demo of RedTeam Flex and see how one of the best CRMs for construction can help your business succeed as it grows.