It’s been a while – 15 months – since I talked about Corecon, the California-based provider of web-based construction software, and more than 18 months since it launched its flagship product Corecon V7. Until V7, Corecon had been mainly focused on business process support (estimating, contract administration, procurement, financial reporting, correspondence, scheduling, etc) rather than on document collaboration, and with yesterday’s introduction of its new TeamLink Portal (news release), it is now pushing even more firmly into the ‘project extranet’ space.
From the description provided by Corecon Technologies’ President Norman Wendl, the business is looking to match the communication capabilities of competing Software-as-a-Service products such as US-based e-Builder and Meridian Prolog, as well as Australian and UK-based SaaS rivals such as Aconex and 4Projects and BIW, respectively – all targeting the US too. For these, TeamLink Portal’s support for external team members (“the ability to collaborate on project information without having to purchase their own subscription to Corecon V7 software“) is nothing new. Project-based subscription rather than per-seat licensing has long been pretty much the norm, encouraging collaboration among a dispersed, fragmented project team throughout planning, design and construction.
The description of TeamLink Portal’s capabilities during during preconstruction and bidding will also cover much of the functionality already available from rival vendors:
“… the TeamLink Portal can be used to capture project drawings, store RFPs and allows subcontractors and suppliers to submit pricing remotely. During construction, team members can access and comment on information they are given permission to see including Journals, RFIs, Submittals, Punchlist items and Schedules. Plus, Corecon’s Project Calendar and Alerts features track time-sensitive material and alert staff to overdue items or team member responses. Team members can also upload and share project files on the TeamLink Portal including drawings, CAD and BIM files and photographs.”
However, where I think it does differ from the rival solutions is in its pricing. It has long been an economical construction process management solution (US$40-$60 per user), but TeamLink Portal is offered free to all Corecon V7 subscribers and can be used among the entire project team at no extra cost. So, a core team of users in one company can quickly collaborate with a much wider team at a price level that may well undercut afore-mentioned competitors, while also providing Corecon’s links to various financial packages.