One of Procore’s key value propositions is that it’s constantly evolving and changing to meet new needs and serve new purposes as they arise. Procore’s acquisition of Honest Buildings in 2019 signaled the start of a renewed focus on owners, and subsequent acquisitions and changes to its platform and technology, including robust customer service and support teams specifically geared towards owners, are reflective of a commitment to keeping their needs top-of-mind.
In Procore’s recent webinar, Looking Ahead: Procore’s Strategy for Enterprise Owners, product leaders discussed their future product plans and vision specifically for owners. Here’s a recap of that discussion:
Investing in the Future With Owners in Mind
“Procore is your partner, and we’re invested in your success…for an owner, there’s much more to delivering a successful project and a long-term asset than just nailing the construction management aspect,” said panelist Ezinne Udezue, Procore’s VP of Product Management for Owners.
“It starts way before construction and ends way after. It’s actually not an end, it’s this cyclical thing. You go into operations and maintenance, and then you’re doing construction all over again.”
Owners usually have multiple projects going on at once, all with unique needs. Procore is increasing its investment in leading-edge technologies to build a next-generation platform with the flexibility, capabilities, and partner ecosystem to apply to a vast array of use cases.
Data analytics and artificial intelligence are two major areas Procore has chosen as core company investments.
“Our intention here is to transform construction into a connected and data-driven industry, empowering you, making things more delightful, automating processes so they’re more efficient. We’ve made several acquisitions, and our goal is to leverage the best of technology to power all of those things,” Udezue said.
“One of our promises to owners is to make Procore intelligent and useful. With data and AI, we’re also making sure it’s personal and helpful to you.”
Machine learning is another technology investment helping revolutionize project visibility for Procore users with the power of predictive insights, Udezue notes.
“Beyond our general insights we’re going to use for quality, safety, and all of the other tools, we have this idea of being able to help our customers understand through their schedule, through our computer vision, through all of the things we’re learning: what’s going on with your costs, and where are overruns going to happen.”
Following the acquisition of INDUS.AI, another significant investment for Procore moving forward is computer vision, which for owners, is the next best thing to being in multiple places at once.
“The idea here is that we can use computer vision to understand what’s going on in the field. As owners, the financiers of these projects, being able to have Procore help you extract insights from images and help drive the ability for your projects to meet the schedule as well as the budget,” Udezue said.
Technology Investments Bearing Fruit for Owners Today
That’s a glimpse of Procore’s higher-level, longer-term vision for supporting owners’ business goals, but what about its value to owners now or in the immediate future?
Procore recently added Schedule Lookaheads, which allow you to create a detailed look of who, where, and what needs to be on-site in the next couple of weeks, and the ability to update task percent complete data from the mobile app in the field. This is helpful for project managers and field teams, particularly those doing inspections, to share information both internally and with contractors to ensure they’re in the right place at the right time.
Procore’s 2019 acquisition of Construction BI paved the way for a big move into advanced analytics, which has allowed owners to access their project, program, and portfolio data in a whole new way, including upcoming functionality to benchmark against anonymized aggregate industry data.
“It’s an exciting opportunity if you leverage Procore Analytics to be able to do some interesting slicing and dicing, but also use our project cohorts, which are based on machine learning, to start benchmarking your performance not only against others in your cohort, but against your own projects,” said Geoff Lewis, Procore’s VP of Product Management, Financials.
Another perennial concern for owners is keeping projects on track from a cost perspective, part of which hinges on managing an effective and well structured bidding and contracting process. Procore gives owners the ability to solicit, manage, and evaluate bids from contractors or consultants in a centralized and collaborative manner. Leveraging some of the functionality from the Honest Buildings acquisition, the platform will provide the ability to compare these bids apples-to-apples for maximum efficiency.
“This is a huge piece of what an owner does, making sure every bid that comes in has the right scope, it really speeds your time to getting to that final price. They can ultimately turn that right into a contract that you manage through to completion in Procore,” Lewis said.
When it comes to platforms, owners need flexibility, particularly as they tackle different types of projects across companies and sectors (e.g. industrial, energy, residential, commercial, public sector, etc.). Procore brings all communication around these projects into one centralized place, offering owners a high degree of configurability to ensure the platform suits your specific business needs, no matter what kind of projects you have on the docket.
One recent example of this flexibility can be found in Procore’s Correspondence tool, which owners have found valuable for many different use cases such as tracking permits and entitlements, or extra work authorizations that originate from a mobile device in the field. This solution connects directly to several other parts of the platform enabling streamlined business processes and truly connected data.
We’ve seen the same thing when it comes to our Action Plans tool, which owners have leveraged for use cases such as stage-gate governance structures, project execution plans, or procedures for environmental or commissioning activities, among many other needs. These solutions are just a few of the examples of how Procore leverages cross-platform connectivity and flexibility to help owners streamline and control a diverse range of different processes and needs, no matter how unique or typical.
Finally, Procore is also investing in improving the end-user experience, both for owners and workers in the field.
“A lot of feedback I get talking with owners is that Procore feels like a GC tool. It’s something that was designed for the complexity and scope of a GC, and a lot of times owners need to sit at a slightly higher level,” said Lewis.
“One of the things we’ve been focused on is how we can make it simpler, easier to navigate, and easier for field teams to adopt it. We’ve modernized and improved our product, and ultimately, the payoff is teams end up using the product faster. We’ve measured the time it takes for a contractor to input an invoice using the new system, and it’s 25% faster than it used to be.”