Since 1981, MARK
SYSTEMS has provided
home builders with the
industry's most powerful
Green Management Practices Create A Healthier Bottom Line
At its most basic, the movement towards green construction and towards “green” products and lifestyle in general, is all about the conservation of resources. The ideas of sustainability, efficiency, ecological impact and low carbon footprint are changing virtually every aspect of residential construction. The design of communities, homes and landscaping has been altered dramatically over the last 5 years based on green building concepts. And of course, construction products that can offer sustainability and resource efficiency are in increasingly greater demand.
What’s disappointing about this movement is the as-yet unrealized prospect of reduced costs and increased profits for the builder and developer. Theoretically, sustainable design, construction and product selection should result in lower costs based on reduced energy consumption and arguably lower maintenance requirements. In practice, many of the cost returns for green construction remain intangible and accrue to the long-term end-user of the product far more than to the builder or developer.
Green Management Offers Return On Investment Now and Later
However, there is one area of green business practice that returns substantial savings directly to the builder and developer immediately and continually. That area is the application of green management practices within the building process. By applying the same concepts of sustainability, efficiency and low carbon footprint to everyday management practices, builders across the country are realizing substantial reductions in operating costs and significant improvements in net profitability.
Address All Areas of Cost and Efficiency
We’re not just talking about recycled paper here (not that there’s anything wrong with that). Sure, paper use is a big part of green management, but an effective program looks at the efficient use of every resource. Quickly, what’s the most expensive resource a construction company uses? Time’s up, but you already know the answer – it’s people. Personnel costs traditionally make up by far the greatest percentage of overhead and G & A costs. Fortunately, a properly applied information management system can reduce or eliminate both paper costs and personnel costs.
Consider that the construction of just one house typically results in the generation of over 400 separate pieces of paper, excuding plans. While the cost (both financial and environmental) of the paper is a factor, a bigger factor is that each one of those pieces of paper is handled by multiple people at different times, often in different locations. Perhaps even more importantly, the information on those pieces of paper is often crucial to the accurate construction of the home, yet is rarely available to the person who needs it in a timely fashion. What is masquerading here as a paper management problem is really an information problem. The challenge is this: how do we get the knowledge previously stored on 400 pieces of paper into the hands of the people who need it, when they need it, without the paper?
MARK SYSTEMS Offers Out-of-the-box Green Management
MARK SYSTEMS’ customers have been enjoying great success in doing just that. By utilizing the power and transparent information delivery capabilities of MARK SYSTEMS’ Integrated Homebuilder Management System, companies like K. Hovnanian have improved construction efficiency while saving thousands of dollars. According to Ken Gill, Implementation Manager for K. Hovnanian’s Southeast Region, taking advantage of MARK SYSTEMS’ web-based work order distribution saved over $6,000 per month in postage in the Virginia communities alone! Coupled with the elimination of 200,000 pieces of paper, and personnel savings of 1 full man day per week, that single change in just one state resulted in a real dollar gain of over $80,000 annnually!
MARK SYSTEMS’ IHMS addresses each of the main stumbling blocks
to effective green construction management by:
Savvy builders are not just using MARK SYSTEMS’ software to reduce costs – they’re also using it to improve profits in a challenging market. According to Ange Knox, Manager of Information Technology for Heartland Homes in Lawrence, Pa., implementing the Custom Option Estimator component within the IHMS Purchasing and Sales modules allowed Heartland to become the largest custom home builder in the Pittsburgh metropolitan area. “To stay on top of the market, we had to transition from being a production oriented builder to being a very custom builder. Using MARK SYSTEMS’ Sales Office / Design Center components, and particularly the Custom Option Estimator, helped us grow our market share from 8% to over 14% in just the last year.” According to Ms. Knox, Heartland has used IHMS to quote and track over 6,500 unique custom options since its implementation, with over 60% of the estimated options being selected for purchase. In fact, one home buyer included over 80 separate custom options in his final selections.
The bottom line is, of course, the bottom line. Reducing costs while improving information flow, construction quality and profitability are real, achievable goals with the right tools in place. Now more than ever, builders across the country are finding that MARK SYSTEMS’ Integrated Homebuilder Management System gives them the tools they need to compete, survive and prosper.
The Integrated Homebuilder Management System - Complete Back Office & Front End Software
is the industry's ONLY single-database home builder software
suite. Offering support for every home building activity, IHMS
delivers full back office and field operations functions directly to
the desktop of every person in the building process. MARK SYSTEMS' single
database architecture means that residential construction information
is delivered instantly and transparently to every team member. Purchasing,
scheduling, field operations, trade partners, sales office and design
center personnel all effortlessly share critical information.
HMSWeb - Hosted IHMS Access
newly released hosted version of IHMS,
brings the full power of MARK SYSTEMS' award winning enterprise software
to home builders of any size. Reduced personnel costs, reduced construction
costs, improved sales conversions and reduced construction times can
now be enjoyed by builders with as few as 10 sold units per year.
IHMS Internet ToolKit - Trade Partners & Field Personnel
closes the communications loop with real-time, instant communication between
every member of your team. Trade partners, superintendets, customer service
reps, even home owners have direct, secure access into the data that's
crucial to them, right now.
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American Management Enterprises, Inc.