6 Top Architect Software for Projects

6 Top Architect Software for Projects

From planning to execution, architecture projects must pass through a complex series of stages and handoffs among team members. Whether you’re a large or small firm, project management software is key to maximizing the efficiency of your architecture project pipeline.

Architect software for projects allows firms to increase profits and visibility, reduce errors, maximize throughput and resources, and make it easier for teams to collaborate. However, it can be challenging to choose the right project management software for your specific needs.

To help you choose the best software, we’ve gathered some of the leading project management tools for architecture firms and analyzed pricing, features, and pros and cons for each.

Let’s get started.

How to find the best project management software for your architecture firm

When choosing the best project management software for your architecture firm, it’s important to evaluate several key factors to ensure that the software meets your specific needs. Here are some crucial aspects to consider:

  • Functionality and features: The software should have robust features that cater to the unique requirements of architectural projects. Look for tools that offer design software integration, project planning, resource allocation, time tracking, and collaboration features. 
  • Ease of use: The user interface (UI) should be intuitive and user-friendly. Architects and project managers often juggle multiple tasks, so a software that is easy to navigate can save time and reduce frustration. Look for software with a clean layout, straightforward menus, and accessible help resources.
  • Collaboration capabilities: Architecture projects involve various stakeholders, including architects, engineers, clients, and contractors. The software should facilitate easy collaboration, communication, and management of all stakeholders. 
  • Customization and scalability: Every architecture firm has unique needs. The software should be customizable to fit your specific project workflows and scalable to accommodate the growth of your firm.
  • Integrations: The ability to integrate with other software, such as customer relationship management (CRM) and accounting systems, is crucial. Seamless integration can streamline workflows and improve efficiency.
  • Cost and ROI: Evaluate the software’s pricing structure to ensure it fits your budget. Consider the return on investment (ROI) by assessing how the software can improve productivity and project outcomes.
  • Customer support and training: Good customer support can be invaluable. Check if the software provider offers reliable customer service, training resources, and user communities.
  • Reviews and testimonials: Finally, research user reviews and testimonials to understand the experiences of other architecture firms. This can provide insights into the software’s performance in real-world scenarios.

By thoroughly evaluating these factors, you can find a project management software that not only aligns with the operational needs of your architecture firm but also enhances productivity and project execution. Remember, investing time in selecting the right software can pay dividends in streamlined project management and successful architectural outcomes.

In the following analysis of each tool, you’ll learn about their benefits, pricing, and customer reviews. 

6 leading architect software for projects

Here are 6 popular project management solutions for planning and executing architecture projects.

1. Monograph

Monograph, a specialized web-based project management tool for architecture and engineering (A&E) firms, is praised on Capterra for its intuitive design, smooth workflows, and regular enhancements. This platform empowers A&E companies to:

Monograph offers A&E firms clear insights into their financials, projects, time tracking, and client relationships, enabling their teams to make more informed and strategic decisions.

Monograph Benefits

Monograph stands out as a comprehensive project management software for A&E firms. It offers features such as:

Monograph is a cost-effective option for A&E firms aiming for high performance, evidenced by its adoption by over 1,000 firms.

Monograph Pricing

Monograph offers two tailored pricing plans for A&E firms:

  • Track: Ideal for smaller firms with up to five employees, this plan includes real-time monitoring of time and fees across projects, budgets, and clients. The Track plan begins at $25 per user per month.
  • Grow: Designed for firms focused on enhancing performance, it encompasses all features of Track with added capabilities in reporting and forecasting. The Grow plan starts at $45 per user per month.

Monograph stands out with its comprehensive training, support without extra fees, and personalized guidance included in the pricing, making it a preferred option for A&E firms seeking dedicated support.

Monograph Reviews

Based on Capterra user reviews, Monograph's highlights include:

  • Efficient time-tracking: Users commend its ability to easily track and invoice time, with clear task visibility and simple assignments.
  • Centralized project management: The platform's integrated approach to time tracking, billing, and project management is highly appreciated for its convenience and accuracy.
  • Ongoing development: Regular updates and responsiveness to feedback underline Monograph's commitment to innovation and adapting to user needs.
  • User-friendly interface: The intuitive design is particularly favored by designers and architects for its industry-specific features and visually appealing tools.
  • QuickBooks integration: Its easy integration with QuickBooks simplifies client information management, with potential for future enhancements.

2. BQE Core

BQE Core is a project management application aimed at architecture, engineering, and professional services. It merges back office operations with front office insights for efficiency and project achievement. The platform includes functionalities such as project management, report generation, and payment handling. BQE Core's pricing varies with the user count and chosen modules, providing flexibility for different organizational needs.

BQE Core Features

BQE Core provides a range of features for architecture, engineering, and professional services:

  • Real-time project tracking for effective budgeting and deadline adherence.
  • Integrates accounting and financial reporting for automated insights.
  • Customizable dashboards and reports for data-driven decisions.
  • Centralized time and expense tracking for streamlined management.
  • Automated payment processing to enhance cash flow and manage accounts efficiently.
  • Mobile app availability for access on iOS and Android devices.
  • Automated billing with varied fee schedules.
  • Tools for managing employee benefits and salaries.
  • Fully integrated CRM for effective sales and lead management.

BQE Core Pricing

BQE Core offers a modular pricing structure, which includes a Foundations Module encompassing time and expense tracking, billing and invoicing, project management, reporting and analytics, and support. Additionally, there are optional modules for accounting, CRM, and HR. 

The specific pricing varies depending on the chosen modules and the number of users, but BQE Core does not publicly disclose its pricing on their website.

BQE Core Strengths & Weaknesses

Based on over 700 Capterra reviews, BQE Core's strengths include its all-in-one functionality for comprehensive time, task, expense, and client satisfaction management, straightforward time and expense tracking, and a responsive customer support team. 

However, users have pointed out weaknesses such as limited customization options, a complex interface that can be overwhelming, and occasional editing and performance issues, like slow response times and software crashes.

3. BigTime

BigTime is a specialized project management software for professional services firms, including those in architecture and engineering. It aims to improve business effectiveness in planning, managing, and billing client work. 

The platform includes various features such as time and expense tracking, resource planning, project management, invoicing, financial management, reporting, analytics, and integration capabilities.

BigTime Features

  • Full project visibility in BigTime includes budget coordination, Gantt charts, and automatic alerts for effective management.
  • Resource planning features skills-based team allocation and productivity monitoring tools.
  • Financial management encompasses project budgeting, forecasting, KPI management, and VAT management for expenses.
  • Billing and invoicing streamline processes with professional templates and integration with existing accounting systems.
  • Centralized time and expense tracking for cost, revenue, profitability, and Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) compliant timesheet management.
  • Integrates with QuickBooks, Salesforce, Lacerte, and Jira for improved workflow efficiency and connectivity.

BigTime Pricing

BigTime's pricing is tiered for A&E firms, with four levels, billed annually per user:

  • Essentials ($20/user/month): Basic plan for small businesses, offering core time and expense tracking.
  • Advanced ($35/user/month): Enhanced features for growing firms needing more robust management tools.
  • Premier ($45/user/month): For larger firms, includes comprehensive project and financial management.
  • Projector (from $60/user/month): Top tier with extensive customization for large or complex firms.

For firms with over 10 users, BigTime removes the $500 platform fee. This structure allows firms to choose a plan matching their needs but may limit access to some features behind higher tiers.

BigTime Strengths & Weaknesses

BigTime's strengths, according to G2 reviews, include its comprehensive project management features, efficient time tracking that aids in accurate project management, and robust billing, expense tracking, and invoicing capabilities. 

On the other hand, users identify weaknesses such as occasional bugs and synchronization issues, a user interface and setup process that can be challenging to navigate and may require a learning curve, and a desire for more integration options with a broader range of software and platforms.

4. Harvest

Harvest is tailored for A&E firms, offering project management tools like time tracking, invoicing, and budget management. It addresses the A&E sector's challenges with features for detailed reporting and integrations with various platforms, aiming to streamline and enhance the efficiency of daily operations.

Harvest Features

Harvest offers a selection of features that enhance project management for A&E firms:

  • Streamlines time tracking to enhance focus on creative tasks.
  • Enables direct invoicing and expense tracking from the mobile app, with automatic conversion of billable hours into client invoices.
  • Allows setting of unique fees for each task, aligning with project budgets.
  • Assists in managing billable hours in relation to client fees.
  • Provides detailed project profitability and budget tracking reports.
  • Integrates with tools like Asana, Slack, ClickUp, and Trello for workflow efficiency.

Harvest Pricing

Harvest's plans start at $10.80 per user/month, offering unlimited projects and team members, with features like time tracking, custom reminders, invoicing, online payments, detailed reporting, integrations, and expense management. 

Additionally, Harvest Forecast, priced at $5 per person per month, focuses on advanced time planning and team management, featuring visual planning and integration with Harvest. 

The separate billing indicates that some advanced features in Forecast are not included in the standard Harvest subscription.

Harvest Strengths & Weaknesses

From over 700 reviews on G2, users of Harvest particularly enjoy its user-friendly and efficient time tracking, the total budget feature for managing project spending, and the platform's reliability with functional mobile and desktop apps. 

However, users have pointed out a need for more detailed reporting, a more refined UI for account maintenance, and increased flexibility in customizing notifications and reports.

5. Deltek Ajera

Deltek Ajera is a cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution tailored for A&E firms, offering features like accounting, project management, human capital management, sourcing, and specifications. It's designed to assist A&E businesses in managing complex projects, boosting productivity, and controlling budgets. 

Deltek Ajera caters to A&E firms of various sizes, aiming to streamline project processes and enhance visibility into projects and resources.

Deltek Ajera Features

Deltek Ajera's features for A&E firms include a single ERP cloud solution for various business needs, visibility and control over projects and resources, pipeline management with a dedicated CRM system, and improved project scheduling. 

It offers tools for efficient project development, delivery, and HR management. Deltek Ajera provides comprehensive project management tools to help A&E firms scale their businesses.

Deltek Ajera Pricing

Deltek Ajera does not list pricing online, requiring direct contact for specific information. Costs include software customization, data migration from old systems, employee training, and annual maintenance and support. These costs can vary widely.

Prospective users should be ready for a substantial investment, with no trial available to evaluate the software beforehand.

Deltek Ajera Strengths & Weaknesses

Based on G2 reviews, Deltek Ajera's strengths include valuable training and webinars, a focus on the A&E industry, and cloud-based remote access. 

However, users suggest improvements in modernizing the user interface, streamlining complex billing and staffing processes, and resolving technical issues for a more reliable experience.

6. Unanet

Unanet is an ERP solution designed specifically for A&E firms, aiming to integrate various organizational functions into a unified team. It offers modern tools that are adaptable to different work environments, including in-office, remote, or field work, catering to the diverse needs of these firms.

Unanet Features

Unanet offers features for A&E firms to enhance business operations.

  • Efficient project management tools for better client satisfaction and profitability.
  • Resource management to optimize team allocation with intuitive scheduling.
  • Mobile tools for accurate time and expense tracking, aiding in billing.
  • Accounting and financial management with built-in controls for error reduction.
  • Reporting and analytics for simplified, real-time data processing.

Unanet Pricing

Unanet's specific pricing details are not disclosed on their website. Like Deltek Ajera, it's likely to have similar additional costs, such as customization, data migration, training, and maintenance. For precise pricing and cost information, a direct inquiry with Unanet is necessary. 

Unanet Strengths & Weaknesses

Based on over 200 reviews on G2, users enjoy Unanet's efficient timekeeping and budget management, real-time cost reporting for projects, and its indirect rate calculation and reporting capabilities. 

However, they suggest improvements in modernizing the interface, offering more flexible reporting options, and streamlining the import of historical data.

Other project management software to consider

For architecture firms considering project management tools, there are also several general project management options. These platforms, while versatile and popular, are not specifically tailored for architectural needs:

  • Asana: Known for its user-friendly interface, Asana facilitates task assignment and deadline tracking, but may not cater to the complex demands of architectural projects​​​​.
  • Microsoft Excel: Often used for its spreadsheet capabilities in budget and schedule management, Excel lacks project-specific collaborative features and is not primarily a project management tool.
  • This platform is admired for its customization and ease of use but is not designed with the specific needs of architectural project management in mind.
  • Trello: Trello’s simple kanban-style system aids in visual task management, yet it might not be comprehensive enough for the intricacies of architectural projects.
  • Basecamp: Focused on communication and collaboration, Basecamp provides essential project management tools but lacks the depth for detailed architectural planning.
  • Jira: Primarily used for technical project management, Jira's complexity may not align well with the workflows of architecture firms.
  • ClickUp: ClickUp is a versatile tool with various features, but its broad focus might not meet the specific needs of architectural project management.

Shortfalls of general project management software for architecture firms

While these project management tools offer versatility and a broad range of functionalities, they do present certain challenges when applied in the specific context of architecture firms. These limitations, highlighted below, are crucial for firms to consider when evaluating the suitability of these tools for their unique project management needs:

  • Generic features: Typically lacking specialized features to complement the architectural design process and unique project management challenges.
  • Insufficient depth for architectural projects: Often not equipped to handle the unique complexities and specific requirements of architectural projects.
  • Adaptation challenges: Adapting these tools to specific workflows and project management styles in architecture can be challenging.
  • Overwhelming: The broad range of features can be overwhelming and may include many elements unnecessary for architectural projects.

Understanding these downfalls is key to making an informed decision about the most appropriate project management tool for an architecture firm.

Which is the best project management software for architects?

Choosing the right project management software for your architecture firm is a decision that should be guided by several critical considerations, including your specific needs and budget. The goal is to find a high-quality software solution that not only enhances your ability to deliver projects efficiently but also resonates well with your team and encourages its use in daily operations.

Curating the best architecture software for your firm is critical to meet today’s demands and stay competitive. Firms must look beyond architectural design software, like computer-aided design (CAD), building information modeling (BIM), and other visualization software for creating 3D models or 2D drafting of floor plans, interior design, and blueprints.

Architecture firms need robust software solutions for communication, collaboration, and more, and choosing the best project management software to join the ranks of SketchUp, AutoCAD, Revit, and Rhino on your tech stack is key.

Monograph is a standout option, particularly for architecture firms, due to its ease of use, robust features, and incredible support.

A closer look at Monograph

  • Key strengths: Monograph is designed with an intuitive interface, making it easy for users to navigate. It offers seamless workflow management and is regularly updated to meet the evolving needs of the architectural sector.
  • Benefits: The software aids in making informed, data-driven decisions, reduces the time spent on administrative tasks, and can lead to an increase in revenue. It allows teams to concentrate more on creative and client-focused work.
  • Pricing: Monograph provides two main plans: Track and Grow, with prices starting at $25 per user per month, accommodating various firm sizes and requirements.
  • User reviews: Users have lauded Monograph for its efficient time-tracking, centralized project management, ongoing enhancements, user-friendly nature, and integration with QuickBooks.
  • Why Monograph is highly recommended: It offers a balanced mix of features, ease of use, and affordability, making it an ideal choice for architecture firms seeking a project management tool.

Next steps: Try Monograph

To determine whether Monograph is the right match for your firm, the best approach is to experience it firsthand. 

Get started with Monograph to evaluate its suitability for your firm's unique project management needs and team dynamics.

Join 15,000+ A/E Readers

Get hidden insights that drive top A/E firms
Join 15,000+ A/E Readers

Get hidden insights that drive top A/E firms

Join our newsletter and learn how to drive your firm forward with actionable insights and tactics.

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.