Kevin Priddy, President and CEO and Kyle Conlan, Vice President
Despite being an integral part of the construction industry, the bidding process is long, arduous, and even fraught with risks. Having been involved in the construction industry for years, Kevin Priddy and Kyle Conlan witnessed firsthand the quandaries of both general contractors and subcontractors and the evolution of construction bidding over the last decade.
General contractors have long relied on their trusted subcontractors to solicit bids and work in liaison to successfully complete projects within a predetermined timeframe. However, the scenario has changed drastically over the last few years with the exponential growth of construction spending across the U.S. The aftermath of this sudden construction industry boom has presented a situation particularly challenging for general contractors—an acute shortage of skilled labors/subcontractors coupled with rising costs. As such, general contractors are impelled to engage with non-performing subcontractors, which often results in delays and increased expenses. Not just general contractors; the situation is equally critical for subcontractors who are struggling to bid on multiple projects. Worse yet, the lack of proper collaboration and communication between the two parties often results in a low bid-to-win ratio, which adversely impacts their capability of improving profit margins.
To put an end to these longstanding predicaments and streamline the tedious construction bidding process, Priddy and Conlan designed the PlanHub software in 2016. As a cloud-based bidding and project management software, PlanHub connects all parties of construction bidding, including general contractors, subcontractors, and suppliers in one place. “By bringing all sectors of the commercial construction community together, we have created a centralized marketplace to get all projects rolling. Designed without unnecessary bells and whistles, our software is extremely user-friendly and generates four times the bids than any other premium software available in the market,” says Kevin Priddy, President and CEO at PlanHub.
“By bringing all sectors of the commercial construction community together, we have created a centralized marketplace to get all projects rolling.”
Better Planning with PlanHub
With PlanHub, general contractors can present their projects in front of a large number of subcontractors, which enables them to receive more bids on their projects and select a proficient partner.
This cutting-edge software is absolutely free for general contractors and provides them with the option to choose subcontractors nationwide (even for the rural areas).
What’s more, creating a project is now easier than ever—all a general contractor has to do is follow a few simple steps. “Unlike other software, where general contractors spend 45 minutes on an average for creating a project, with PlanHub, they can do the same in less than five minutes. Utilizing PlanHub, they can post more projects every day, which helps them to cast a wider net for reaching more subcontractors and obtain more bids,” says Conlan, Vice President of PlanHub.
For creating a project on PlanHub, first, a general contractor needs to mention the project name, address, specifications, trades, and types of subcontractors they would like to work with and upload blueprints. Following that, they can send out emails to a large number of subcontractors (upward of 5000) within a certain ZIP code. Interestingly, if general contractors are not logged into the PlanHub platform, all information about subcontractors directly reach their email inbox in a clean bid template. “Along with the bid proposal, subcontractors can send their liability insurance, prequalification forms, pictures of past projects, or details of their previous engagements. This helps general contractors better understand the capability and efficiency of subcontractors,” Priddy comments. More importantly, general contractors can quickly respond to subcontractors while negotiating prices and making required adjustments. The results are compelling! Through the instant interaction and networking, PlanHub is equipping general contractors and subcontractors with an opportunity to not just improve the bid-hit ratio but also forge stronger relationships. “Currently, we’re seeing more than 50,000 bids per month submitted through PlanHub,” Conlan mentions.
Like general contractors, subcontractors, too, can register on PlanHub and get started without any upfront costs. In addition, the PlanHub platform also comes with a paid premium service that subcontractors can leverage. This exposes them to a vast general contractor database and more projects while increasing the chance of winning bids.
Numerous subcontractors today use PlanHub to improve their profit margins. For instance, Georgia-based Nuvolt Electrical struggled to engage and bid on projects, which hampered their business significantly. Upon signing up for PlanHub’s premium service, the client was able to escalate their sales drastically. “They are now hooked on our platform, and 100 percent of their work comes through PlanHub. With the help of our software, they have exponentially grown their business over the years and now have offices in Florida and Georgia,” Priddy comments.
Besides general contractors and subcontractors, the PlanHub software is also geared toward suppliers of building materials and on-site facilities. It enables them to collaborate with subcontractors during each phase of a project and access measurements and plans, place bids on local projects, upload cost estimate, select trades based on available supplies, and so forth.
“Just like subcontractors, we are exposing suppliers to new project opportunities that help them have an edge in the market and engage in projects according to their choice,” Conlan mentions.
In addition to such a unique offering, PlanHub provides continuous training to make their clients well accustomed to the software. However, unlike other software that demands multi-day sessions, users don’t require extensive training to get up and running with the PlanHub software. “Even novice users can learn to use it on their own. We also have video tutorials and webinars that provide step by step instructions to help our clients understand how to submit a bid, download plans, or reach a general contractor,” says Conlan. The company also houses an adept support team to serve clients in the best possible way.
Geared Up for the Future
To sharpen its competitive edge in the market and meet the ever-growing customer demands, PlanHub is driven by an unwavering commitment to innovation. PlanHub today is web-based, so users can leverage it from any preferred location as per their convenience and communicate in real-time.
Striding ahead, PlanHub is going to roll out advanced features for subcontractors, which will take every single plan that’s uploaded on the platform and perform keyword indexing. With that, subcontractors will be able to search a project in no time by entering specific keywords, without having to sift through thousands of project plans.
Additionally, the company is working on a premium product for general contractors along with advanced analytics to enable users to accurately track project win rate. Not stopping there, the PlanHub team is also aiming to simplify the rating process between the general contractors and subcontractors.
With its all-in-one construction bidding software, PlanHub is witnessing a triple-digit growth with over 7,000 new users registering on and using the software every single month. In an attempt to strengthen its management team, the company has recently recruited highly qualified individuals with extensive experience in the construction industry.
The construction industry has traditionally been technology averse. However, today it is changing rapidly with the influx of new talents who are not ready to accept the manual way of working. To this end, PlanHub has brought about a revolution by simplifying the rather complicated construction bidding process with its state of the art software. In a nutshell, by allowing general contractors, subcontractors, and specialty vendors to operate conjointly on a single platform, PlanHub serves as a one-stop-shop for the pre-construction project phase. “Our goal is not to be the leader in this industry; we want to be a strong player in the pre-construction process. We are keenly focused on honing our capabilities to serve our clients better and make our software an integral part of the construction industry,” concludes Priddy.