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Having the right tools for a job is almost as important as having the skills necessary to complete the task. Yet, many construction companies fail to see the need for a construction software package has payroll functionality. No doubt they have the skills to complete the job, but this tool can help to make that job more profitable.

Indeed, since payroll is an inherent piece of any construction project accounting, reflecting construction manpower labor costs, it is paramount that it be as up to date as possible, to ensure charges to projects are properly directed, and to help project managers and company financial folks keep stay on top of all project costs and the potential impact that changes have on payroll figures.

The old method of estimating payroll figures is inaccurate and takes time, which costs money. The amount of time it takes is often increased due to the pay structure of many construction companies – often workers with more diverse skill sets receive higher wages. Calculating the potential costs for 12 workers for varying time periods that have different wages can get confusing and will most certainly take time away from activities that a manager could be doing that add value to the project.

Real time data is always best, if available, since it leaves little question or confusion about the overall project accounting from day to day or week to week. If the data is days, or even hours old, it can lead to ineffective monitoring and poor accounting controls of the overall project package; which then can lead to unacceptable outcomes with regard to profit and loss.

Today’s economy still moves faster than ever and companies that are armed with as much real time data as possible generally have the best results. New risks constantly arise that need to be accounted for, and having real time data allows decision makers to make the best decisions at any given time. These decisions can also be made faster as there is no need to estimate costs to date when you have real time data in your hands. Saving time equals saving money.

These factors have led construction software manufacturers to begin including as much real time data as possible, for good reason. Today’s market moves faster than ever and new risks arise every day, requiring decisions to be made in the middle of the project that were not expected. Which is better – making those decisions with the most accurate data you can possibly have or with old data and some estimates?

While it is necessary to maintain accurate construction project costs, real time data can also become an administrative nightmare, as it relates to manpower allocations and the like. This is rarely a problem in well run organizations.

No job is ever completed ‘according to plan,’ and changes cannot be avoided in the middle of a project. These changes lead to few projects being executed exactly on budget and are more of the rule than the exception.

For example, perhaps a big milestone is approaching for a particular project and the supervisor realizes that he does not have the personnel on hand that was planned to complete the task. As a result, the supervisor has a different group complete the task. Thus, the actual cost of that piece of the project will either be over or under the budgeted amount. With construction management software with real time payroll data, decision makers will be able to see those different costs reflected in actual costs as they happen. With this data, they can make the right choice about how to make up for the overages and finish on budget or how to continue to operate under budget.

It goes without saying that some measure of flexibility must be built into any effective software package for reasons like those mentioned above. Field supervisors need to be able to deviate somewhat from the initial plans, so they can continue to move forward toward project completion on time and, hopefully, within budget! Having real-time payroll data is simply the most effective way to deal with these bumps in the road. Check out construction software reviews for further guidance in selecting software with payroll functionality.

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