Why Contractors Upgrade from QuickBooks® to Deltek ComputerEase

May 01, 2023
John Meibers
John Meibers
VP & GM of Deltek ComputerEase
Why Contractors Upgrade from QuickBooks to Deltek ComputerEase

Most small to mid-sized contractors rely on low-cost software like QuickBooks® to run the accounting functions of their firms. That’s because QuickBooks is an inexpensive, easy-to-implement, entry level solution. It’s a one-size-fits-all tool that is suitable to keep records and facilitate many accounting functions for a typical small business.

However, some contractors using QuickBooks reach a point in their story where they need a solution that is industry-specific, can support rapid growth and can meet construction requirements like Work in Progress (WIP), AIA billing, union payroll, prevailing wage and more. That’s when it makes sense to explore a purpose-built solution for construction like Deltek ComputerEase.

Why Contractors Outgrow QuickBooks

The construction industry is entrepreneurial by nature. New construction businesses start every day. Many construction workers that have spent years working in construction eventually decide that they are capable and ready to run their own businesses.

Soon after, contractors establish the basis for operating their business, including the software tools they use. Contractors at this stage typically use software tools like QuickBooks, multiple spreadsheets and low-cost mobile apps. These low-cost tools can adequately serve a contractor for a limited time.

However, most contractors will experience growth. Maybe it’s an increase in the number of jobs or maybe it’s the emergence of much larger jobs. While growth is an exciting development for a construction business, it often introduces new requirements. Requirements could include better job costing detailed WIP reports to help get a surety bond for a job or increase a line of credit with a bank, and managing prevailing wage, certified payroll or AIA billing.

These requirements can be difficult to manage with a generic tool such as QuickBooks, which is not intended to address construction specifically. To meet these needs with QuickBooks, construction companies usually require the introduction of several new spreadsheets, additional third-party software and have to modify how the solution was intended to be used. And many contractors who have outgrown this entry level solution end up spending a lot of their time managing their business outside of QuickBooks.

Contractors that continue to use QuickBooks while their business is rapidly growing or facing new, complex requirements leave themselves vulnerable to:

  • Thin profit margins or profit loss on jobs
  • Poor cash flow
  • Penalties due to violating compliance
  • Inefficient data collection
  • Human error
  • Lack of clarity into critical project and financial metrics
  • Increased potential for negative client interactions

While growth is typically good news, the inability to manage growth and new requirements can be devastating to a contractor’s business. It’s at this point in the contractor’s story that they need to seriously consider adopting new processes and tools to support their growth. Similarly to how contractors adopt new and more sophisticated physical tools when they take on more complex jobs, the same concept can be applied to the software tools contractors use to run their businesses. For example, there comes a time when a backhoe is more worthwhile than a shovel and there also comes a time when purpose-built software for contractors is more worthwhile than QuickBooks.



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When Purpose-Built Software Makes Sense

Eventually, a low-cost and simple solution like QuickBooks becomes expensive and even complicated for a contractor. Contractors at this point need a solution that allows them to meet construction requirements within their software and spend more time on their business versus in their business. This way they can proactively make good decisions.

Many of our users made the switch from QuickBooks. The following are top considerations for why growing construction companies like yours chose to upgrade to Deltek ComputerEase:

  • Rapid growth in jobs became unmanageable in QuickBooks
  • Job profitability was misunderstood and uncertain until after the job
  • Cash flow was poor and not easily tracked
  • Construction requirements such as prevailing wage and certified payroll could not be met without using an outside software
  • Accurate and detailed WIP reports were difficult to attain to get a bank loan or a bond for a job
  • New payroll complexities emerged such as multi-state/multi-city income taxes
  • Equipment, inventory and other resources were difficult to track and manage properly

How Deltek ComputerEase Can Help?

Whether your organization has five employees or 500, Deltek ComputerEase is priced and packaged for the needs of contractors. It includes everything you need to manage your books, control job costs and meet construction requirements while connecting them all together in a single solution.

Job costing excellence is at the core of high-performing construction companies. Unfortunately, generic accounting software programs fall short of providing the functionality that construction companies require to be successful long-term.

An industry-specific accounting solution like Deltek ComputerEase gives contractors the tools they need to make better business decisions through improved visibility and insight to control all areas of their jobs and the broader organization. It allows contractors to run their business by looking ahead rather than always looking through the rearview mirror.

Make the Move

If you are a contractor using QuickBooks and any of the above sounds familiar to you, we recommend switching to construction-specific software like Deltek ComputerEase as your next step. If you are experiencing growing pains that cannot be easily accommodated in your current software, it's likely time to consider a solution that can support your business' growth and changing requirements.


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