Often companies are reluctant to adopt technology even when they know it could improve their process in the long run simply because adding another software platform will complicate the way they’re accustomed to functioning.
So they continue to do things the way they’ve always done them, losing out on opportunities to streamline workflows, improve efficiency, and increase accuracy.
But all of that changes when the platform offers an open API.
What Is an API?
An API (Application Programming Interface for the technically inclined) is essentially a way for other software to plug into a platform without a developer needing access to all of the code. It connects one to the other so that moving data between them is simple.
What STACK’s API Can Do for Your Construction Business
What can your team do with STACK’s API? The simple answer is facilitate the movement of data into STACK and out of STACK. You’re able to integrate STACK into your own custom workflow and make it work for your business, the way you want.
Why Move Data into STACK
Plans and Bid Requests
If you get bid requests via an online plan room or data platform, you’re able to download those project plans and document directly into STACK to perform your takeoffs. There’s no need to download, save to your desktop, and upload to STACK – this is done automatically for you by the API connection. STACK retains plan page numbers and autonames files for easy access, and there’s no concern over version control when change orders occur.
Website Lead Generation
Create a form on your company website where potential customers can upload their plans and specs to request a free estimate. An API connection to STACK will pull the plans in and add them to your bid calendar based on the date the customer specifies.
Materials and Pricing
By connecting your materials and pricing databases with STACK via API, you’re able to pull completely up-to-date data into your estimates via items and assemblies in STACK. There’s no guesswork – you’ll be confident the prices you use to formulate estimates.
Why Move Data out of STACK
Once you’ve performed your takeoff and created a detailed estimate, you can generate a professional, bid-ready, and branded proposal right in STACK. Then, with an API connection you can send your proposal directly to the customer via email and into your CRM as needed.
Sales Opportunity Tracking
Give your team a single source of truth for all product information by linking STACK to your CRM. Project statuses updated in STACK can automatically sync with those in your CRM so you can track the success of bids assigned to specific sales representatives. View up-to-date estimates rather than an old document, and connect your bid calendar to your CRM.
Project Management and Accounting
An approved estimate becomes a project budget and eventually a customer invoice, and with an API connection to your project management and accounting software, you can make this transition easily – without retyping everything into Excel. Then use your PM and accounting software to generate reports for actual vs. estimated, overhead allocation, labor, etc.
Security Benefits of Connecting Platforms with an API
When employees must download files, manipulate them, and upload them elsewhere, there is the potential for malware attacks as well as data loss due to file corruption and poor version control. But with an API connection between platforms, documents never need to be downloaded locally, and your business is safer.