February 28, 2019
Back when phone calls and fax machines were the most advanced connectors between custom homebuilders and their clients and subcontractors, Craig “Tooey” Courtemanche had an idea. He was one of those clients, living in Silicon Valley while building a new home in Santa Barbara for his young family. He felt disconnected from the project and noticed that, in general, the large and highly specialized teams that must come together to pull off homebuilding efficiency were rary on the same page when it came to daily operations. With his background in software development, Courtemanche set out to streamline that very complex process. The result was Procore, now headquartered in Carpinteria. Giffin & Crane has been utilizing Procore since before the beginning. For some feedback from the field, let’s touch base with Giffin & Crane Executive Vice President Derek Shue.
When did G&C first start using Procore, and what was it about the software that was compelling?
Derek Shue: We first started using Procore back in 2002, back then it was a program called Site Pro. In the early 2000s, there were not many software programs out there geared towards the management of construction projects. Always looking for new opportunities to serve our clients, and seeing an opportunity to work with a local company, [co-founder and CEO] Bruce Giffin met with Procore CEO Tooey Courtemanche to find out more.
How does the Procore system help during a project, in a day-to-day fashion?
With most construction projects now, there is an overwhelming amount of information that needs to be tracked, organized, distributed, and revised on a daily basis. Procore allows us to do all of this from a single platform and maintain access to this info for as long as we need. It allows us to track and manage digital drawings, project photos, change orders, subcontractor work orders, RFIs (Request for Information), emails, meeting agendas — the list keeps going! Also, with all of the info being generated and stored digitally, we are able to free ourselves from the mountains of paperwork a construction project can create.
How about long-term? What features does the software offer that can help a builder manage or revisit a project that has been completed for some time?
There are always questions that come up toward the end of a long-term project — or even years after completion — that previously would need research and review through boxes of folders and binders. On Procore, with meeting notes, RFIs, subcontracts, etc., all found in one place, we can go back and find that information in half the time. We’ve had projects from 12 to 15 years ago where we went back into the Procore archive to get information for clients. It’s a pretty amazing tool.
How about for your clients, is Procore helpful to the homeowner? If so, how so?
In this new age in technology and accessibility, we can give our clients the ability to keep track of their project at any time. Our clients have access to their project notes, logs, photo streams, customized and automated reports, construction documents, schedules, and drawings, all online and even from their mobile devices. They can log in with the Procore mobile app and view photos of their project similar to the way they would scroll through Instagram, even allowing for comments and @mentions to tag specific people.
Anything you’d like to add?
We are also starting to utilize Procore’s integration with DocuSign, giving our clients the ease of signing contracts or change orders with the click of a mouse or swipe of the finger.