In recent years, the planning and management stages of projects in the construction industry have become much more advanced and technological than before. But between planning and execution, one important phase remains outdated and almost unchanged: the tenders phase. A new digital tender system enables a simple, fast and smooth transition from the tender phase to the execution phase and shortens the contractors’ path to commencing construction.
Congratulations on winning the tender! This is a happy and exciting moment, and now is the time to move on to the execution stage. But here begins a new, long and exhausting challenge in itself: transferring the project to the responsibility of those in charge of execution and budget control, and contracts planning and management with the subcontractors
After winning the tender, it is necessary to prepare a budget and transfer it for implementation, a process that takes time and is usually done manually. Traditionally, tenders are submitted on excel sheets and are laid out according to a particular logic. But in the execution phase, project management moves to other information systems in which the logic is different. This creates a disconnection between the various divisions and systems, which do not “speak” the same language, resulting in the first step after winning the tender in many cases being a manual entry of numbers and data into the various information systems. This manual work is slow, delays the beginning of the execution phase and opens the door to mistakes.
Another result of the disconnection between the tenders department and the project management or budget control departments is the difficulty of the execution and control bodies in finding and using all the data collected at the tender stage. This is essential information for the execution phase, but today most of the information is in dozens of folders and Excel files stored in disarray, taking much effort to find what information is in the files and folders and to understand it. The result: project managers are discouraged and most of the information stored in Excel files is not used, being inconvenient to search for data, the information is not intuitively accessible and there is no convenient way to present the information in a visual manner. The inaccessibility of the information from the tender phase is another factor that hinders the transfer of the project from planning to execution.
During the life of an average residential project, a main contractor usually signs at least 100 contracts with subcontractors and various suppliers. With such an amount of interaction, when all done manually, there is room for many mistakes. In order for a project to run smoothly and uninterrupted, good planning and managing the contractual engagements is critical. Tenders should be distributed on time, leaving enough time for negotiations to select contractors without pressure, and contracts should be signed on time so that no delays are caused in the project. A contractor who is not meticulous in the planning and management of the contractual engagements may find out at the last minute that not enough bids have been collected, or that a contract has not been signed by mistake, which may affect the schedules of the entire project. Those who apply for last-minute bids may get fewer bids, and sometimes resulting in choosing less good subcontractors, paying more and getting below standard work. So the way the contractual engagements are managed has a big impact on both the budget and the quality and schedule of the entire project.
The solution: Digitization of the tender and execution stages
The ConWize building estimating software makes the entire tender process, and transition to the execution phase, digital. Even at the cost estimate stage, the system receives the bids and tender data in a method that allows the data to be transferred immediately at the click of a button to a format that the project management and budget control systems understand. This avoids the need for manual typing, avoids costly mistakes, and saves a lot of time.
The system also knows how to generate a budget immediately for the execution phase, by being integrated with the company’s operating system and knowing how to speak to it “in its own language”.
The system also gives visual access to all the information and data the project manager and the execution team need (including those collected at the tender stage). The project manager can browse the information, easily find the data he is looking for, and understand why and how a particular item was estimated or a particular contractor’s bid was chosen, saving him time and mistakes, and allowing him a smoother and faster entry into the execution phase. A common language is created for all departments, making it possible to share information and understand the budget for execution.
A significant added value that the system provides to main contractors is a solution for the smart management and planning of contracts with subcontractors and suppliers from the beginning of the project. The system shows which tenders need to be sent to subcontractors and which contracts need to be signed, and when, throughout the project. This way you can sign contracts according to the progress of the project, and set automations and reminders when each contract needs to be signed. For example, if you need to start processing a particular contract 6 months from the start of the project, set it in the system and it sends alerts and reminders on the set date.
The system includes a dashboard that shows in real time the status of the contractual engagements in the entire project – which proposals have been received and which have not yet; which contracts have already been signed and which have not yet; what contracts are being executed; how much has been paid to each contractor and how does it line up with the budget.
The ConWize system makes it possible to plan and manage the contractual engagements in the project fully digitally, and through it:
- Draw the “map of the contractual engagements in the project” – plan all the contracts that must be signed during the life of the project with subcontractors and suppliers.
- Distribute the tender to contractors, receive bids, compare bids and analyze them in relation to the project budget.
- Enter in advance all the important project deadlines, and who is responsible for each contract, receive reminders and alerts when initiate the tenders for subcontractors and suppliers, when to sign each contract, and more.
- Select the winning bid in each field, prepare all contract documents (including appendices) for digital signing, sign digitally with subcontractors and perform an internal round of signatures within the company.
In the ConWize system, the contract framework can be defined and planned, and easily and quickly carry out a round for approvals within the company to progress to signing a contract with the selected contractor. You can take all the necessary steps towards signing a contract, prepare all the necessary documents (pre-contract management), as well as sign contracts with contractors in digital and remote signatures, without having to dedicate trips and meetings, or print tenders and long contracts. This actually enables a full paperless process in the preparation and signing of contracts in the construction industry.
After signing a contract, the ConWize system can be integrated to any existing contract or payment management system, and the project manager can see in real time the status of each of the contractual engagements via a dashboard showing what has already been signed and what not. The system also provides the company’s contract managers with a digital overview of all the contracts and projects in progress in the company, and allows them to negotiate several projects simultaneously with the same subcontractor to obtain a better price.
Leading construction companies have already chosen the ConWize system to streamline the preparation of their tenders and move them to the execution stage.
If you, too, want to become more efficient, contact us here for a no-obligation consultation.