ProContractor is a comprehensive estimating accounting, and project management solution designed to help small and midsize contractors manage critical financial operations. Deployed either on-premise or in the cloud, the solution enables users to manage the entire project lifecycle starting from bidding to project completion.
ProContractor offers an integrated estimating feature to allow users to automatically convert bids into projects, including setup of cost and billing codes, project alternates and lien notice setup. The solution automatically calculates the cost of labor, materials and equipment as soon as the project requirements are entered into the system.
The virtual binder feature syncs electronic documents in real time, ensuring that everyone is working on the most updated information. The built-in email communication feature enables contractors to send email alerts to bidders and suppliers or share internal messages across teams. The solution can also be accessed via a mobile app on iOS, Android and Windows mobile devices.
Rachel R. Branche: Bau Mitarbeiteranzahl: 51-200 Mitarbeiter
I will check back in after a full 6 months with the program but I bet our estimates are going to be more robust and decrease misses in the bids.
So we just switched to doing our estimates in Pro-contractor and there are some great abilities like building assemblies for line items. This has allow us to minimize the amount of information that can possible confuse someone looking at it. We also like that everything can be tied to a SOV items easily.
This software is a lot more complex that what we typically use so in that training time is a little more intense to understand. The terms used in this software also cause a little confusion as now what we use as cost codes are refereed to as phase codes which can get confused with phases.
Owen W. Branche: Glas, Keramik & Beton Mitarbeiteranzahl: 201-500 Mitarbeiter
We are a specialty subcontractor with seven entities doing approximately $50M/revenue, have been growing double digits since ProContractor installation and have been ProContractor users for approximately 3.5 years.
ProContractor is a great all in one integrated system, housing all needs of our business, from estimating and project management through HR (not enrollment) and accounting. All modules are communicating mostly seamlessly and it handles our many intercompany transactions without issue. In addition, for someone who was new to the construction industry as an accounting professional when I started using ProContractor, I found it incredibly user friendly and easy to navigate!
As someone who is not extremely IT savvy, my biggest complaint is the out of the box reporting capabilities. Because of the module design, often you can't combine multiple attributes of two different modules into one report, instead you download the information and work with it in Excel. In addition, project management reporting is lacking, especially from a budget to actual perspective, despite all of the necessary information being there (this is from an accounting perspective, but I don't often hear that from our project managers).
Also, the journal entry process is extremely cumbersome - I don't understand why they can't just design an Excel upload template.
Finally, from a customer service perspective, I typically find them to be very responsive; however, for tougher questions or training needs, it is difficult to get them to dedicate time to you or follow-up unless you are persistent (i.e. they always want to try to knock it all out in a one hour phone call). Having said that though, some of our issues are self driven in that we skimped on a few attributes of original adoption/integration in order to save a few dollars.
Chris K. Branche: Bau Mitarbeiteranzahl: 13-50 Mitarbeiter
This software has some great potential. It has the goal of almost complete coverage of a construction business process for day to day use, but it has some serious issues the limit this ability. I do believe these issues can be fixed, but at the moment they seem to be working on them. Additionally, it is not always as intuitive as their presentation makes it seem. People with lower level computer skills will have a tougher time getting proficient.
1. Great potential. With some bug fixes and some changes, this product could be so much more.
2. Covers (can cover) from estimating to collection of payments.
3. Very flexible estimating system.
4. Form and report flexibility
5. Document management
6. Above average costing ability
1. Cloud service is slow at peak times
2. Estimating flexibility could mean a user affects estimating catalog.
3. The mobile app was almost completely unusable until very recently. (I am still wary).
4. Technical support is sometimes unable to solve problems.
5. Some key documents are not in project document package.
6. State specific certified payroll not in the system.
7. Consultants do not follow through during training sometimes.
8. Expensive for a product that is not fully at its capability.
Be certain to look at the areas I described closely before purchasing.
Kahealani T. Branche: Elektrische/elektronische Fertigung Mitarbeiteranzahl: 51-200 Mitarbeiter
The day I started @ Cal Coast was the day they went live with the software migration from American Contractor to ProContractor. The software is user friendly enough that I was able to navigate it fairly easy and my biggest challenge was learning how to process tasks the Cal Coast way rather than having to figure out a complicated software. However, the experience for the rest of the users in my office that had worked on AC for the last few years was rather different. Their experience was comparative between AC and PCMX and they experienced more frustration that I did. However, my overall experience remains positive with some constructive feedback for improvements in the future.
This conference has highlighted several areas where I am doing things the "long way" when there are shorter and better ways to get done. It would be great to have a section somewhere that highlights neat little tricks and short cuts to get some of the simple tasks completed. For example, for six months we have been trying to figure out how to make our widgets in those cute little boxes on the dashboard. well we just paid the fee to come to this conference to have someone simply show us to click and drag to the end of the screen to organize our widgets. We were pleased, but it would have been nice to have seen a 2 min tutorial (like they do on YouTube) to show us how to do that.
I like the logic of the product. I feel that if you know what it is you want to do, that if you look hard enough, you will find a way to do it. I like that the categories are fairly organized and easy to follow. I like that I can create almost all my billing forms from the platform and that I can have multiple tabs of the same function open to work on multiple tasks.
I would like the lien management process to be more integrated with the invoicing process. I would like to be able to build my customers billing applications into their customer profile so it can be auto filled through the system. I currently have to process them in separate software (excel, word, or pdf). I would like to have a list of all the shortcut keys so I can avoid using my mouse for faster processing. I would like feedback on suggestions I've submitted for voting. I would also like that voting platform changed as I think the idea I have has value, but it gets lost in the feed and so people don't see it or don't even know about that function in support.
Come to the yearly event. My controller came last year and I came this year. While there are vast improvements that they can make for Procontractor support throughout the event, I have had so many of my little issues and annoyances answered just by being here. Some of them are going to save us a significant amount of costs when we implement them and some of them we are just excited about because we learned to do something faster and more efficiently. The networking experience was also great and we found people right in our backyard (our own customers) that were going through the migration during the same time we were and we could have been a support to each other this whole time. Come to the event.
Dillon G. Branche: Bau
First, it should be noted that ProContractor is an entity owned and maintained by Viewpoint Construction Software. If anything, my experience has improved since VCS' acquisition of Maxwell Systems. ProContractor does a magnificent job for medium-sized contractors who require some costing rigor in addition to an integrated software package (i.e., including accounting, project management, and estimation in one piece). However, despite the seductiveness of the product's marketing, a considerable amount of thought needs to be invested in determining, analyzing, and comparing your present internal processes from estimation to project closeout with what ProContractor offers. In other words, do not let the marketing materials do the thinking on such a crucial decision for you. ProContractor was designed with industry best practices regarding workflow as well as internal controls in mind, not necessarily simplicity (as with QuickBooks). Many complaints pertinent to supposed extraneous steps actually tie back to how the software, through an impressive yet simple permissions infrastructure, can control who (for example, in accounts payable) enters invoices, approves them, selects them for payment, prints (i.e., has access to) the checks, and posts the transactions. Shortcuts are inexpensive until you realize how expensive fraud and lost trust can become.
I do not dislike this software or the vendor, but this is an excellent opportunity to address points made by others who are dissatisfied with the product, for their disappointment deserves attention from even the most satisfied customer. When my firm adopted ProContractor and dumped QuickBooks Enterprise three years ago (just prior to my hiring, actually), we chose something that was decidedly less impressive upon implementation than presented to the directors during a trade show in Las Vegas. No thought had been given as to how our processes would align with ProContractor's intuition of proper workflow, because we were primarily concerned about fully integrating the firm's processes and procedures within the software ecosystem. We went live in three months flat after intense scrutiny of our costing, project management, and estimation procedures, humbling ourselves along the way through reconciling what we thought we knew with ProContractor's processes architecture and internal controls logic. Granted, we had suggestions (and lots of them) that were heard. Many of them, such as the lien management feature and many of the improvements in iPad integration, can be tied directly to our recommendations. Ultimately, we were satisfied, but that was because our expectations were not to invest in a system that would cater to ourselves without acceptance of potentially radical change, but rather to develop a relationship with the software and vendor that was founded on a trust of the system's logic. From there, we could use the system as a mirror to check our understanding of our business versus how it can function even more efficiently.
More so than anything else, take ample time to ask questions. Ask for a walk-through of a project's life cycle within the system. Invest serious resources into the estimation module, because the estimator is the conductor of the orchestra. His estimates, purchase orders, and project billing parameters can make everyone else's lives profoundly simpler post-implementation. Project management should be well-drilled in the uses of the project set-up, costing, and change management features. Accounting should be aware of much of the project management piece as well as the customer, financial, vendor, employee, and administrative modules to ensure that ultimately, numbers can be trusted and users adequately protected.