Business Development

The Briq Story

Read the story behind how Briq came to be and why it was created.

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When discussing Briq, it isn’t hard for me to pitch its value to our clients. In some ways, it’s obvious. That’s exactly why we created Briq in the first place. My time in construction showed me where the industry's biggest pain points were and why other solutions just weren’t cutting it. 

Briq isn’t the product of a silicon valley software fantasy. It’s the culmination of years of experience in the construction industry working on the ground floor with financial professionals. It’s not an exaggeration to say that I’ve been working towards finding a solution like Briq from almost the beginning of my time in construction. 

I’m confident our product is going to create an industry-wide change in how construction finance is handled. Briq is designed to stand at the frontier of construction software. To prove it, I’d like to share with you the story of how Briq came to be in the first place, and what experiences contributed the most to making this company what it is today. 

Why I picked construction

Though the construction industry has been my life for twenty years now, I didn’t start out that way. I started out in banking, working over in London in the year 1999. While I enjoyed my time there, I was more interested in the booming tech market that was expanding at the time. The first tech job I found was an implementations role at CMiC where I quickly got embedded with Turner Construction for around two years. 

That’s where I fell in love with construction. 

Construction is a people-first industry. When you work with someone in construction, you’ll get to know them for life. As an extroverted person, I loved being around the energetic and engaging people that populated every corner of the construction industry. Throughout the years, I’ve made lifelong friends and phenomenal connections in ways that just aren’t possible in other sprawling industries

At the same time, I didn’t just join because the people were great. I did it because there was a huge opportunity to help them. The construction industry is filled with unending reports, paperwork, and eighty-hour work weeks. I saw people working themselves to the bone just to get vague and frankly inaccurate estimations of job costs, forecasts, and more. Those great people I love to work with are pushing themselves to the limit just to keep their heads above water. 

Surviving in the construction industry is a monumental challenge. The profit margins are some of the lowest around, and bankruptcy is frequent. Construction runs the economy and builds the world around us, but the profits and workflow don’t reflect that. 

With great people, huge growth opportunities, and a chance to make people’s lives easier, choosing construction has always been a no-brainer for me. 

Tackling the construction industry's big problems

Construction as an industry is dated. Most of the software companies run today are older, and far outclassed in terms of power by other modern alternatives. However, just pointing that fact out isn’t useful at all. Why is it dated? What the heck are we doing to solve it? Why isn’t our tech working? What is it on the technology end that’s stopping companies from pulling the trigger? My experience in construction has been defined by trying to answer those questions. 

With twenty years of experience in construction tech, I saw the different approaches that were being tried. I continued pushing and chasing what I thought would be the silver bullet to construction angst. The software served its purpose well and did what was expected of it. However, in my eyes, it still wasn’t enough. 

Yes, these tools are serviceable. Yes, they perform their functions well. Yes, they’ve helped digitize a lot of functions. But those aren’t the important questions that you need to get a “Yes” from. 

Are our profit margins improving? Are our forecasts as accurate as they can be? Are we making the most out of our team's skill set by reducing repetitive work? Are we spending less time transferring numbers and more time analyzing them? Are we tracking all of our expenses to the best of our ability in a timely manner? Is the software we use meaningfully solving any of these problems? 

Let me save you some time. The answer is a big fat no. One typo can still cascade into a spreadsheet mess. People are either scrolling through a transaction list or squinting at creased receipts to track onsite job costs. Everyone from leadership to clerks is still spending far too much time for far too little in return. Errors multiply as tasks move from one silo to another. It’s a disaster. If construction were a relay race, we’d be dead last every single time.

I once sat in a room with eight CFOs from the top fifty general contractors in the world. The goal was to find out the best way to build a financial workflow. The discussion got heated and everyone looked at each other as though they were crazy finance aliens. Each one insisted their own way was correct, and the other methods might as well have been some number labyrinth that would run their company to the ground. 

I got the answer to my questions. I saw why the industry was struggling to adopt tech. It’s because there is no one-size-fits-all solution to construction finance. There will never be. It’s as insane of a task as trying to design a suit that fits everyone who wears it. It couldn’t be done.

The solution then became obvious. Let’s stop trying to create that suit. 

Let’s create the tailor.

Why Briq is the solution to the problems

When you first open the Briq platform, all you’ll get is a blank screen. That blank screen is the canvas on which you’ll paint your business. Our implementation team works tirelessly with our clients to digitize their financial workflows and automate their systems the way they want them. 

Every company has different invoices they receive. Project managers have their own spreadsheet formulas. Project budget formats will look different from company to company and even from project to project. So why try to force the industry into one mold? 

Briq isn’t a machine that you need to run a specific way. It’s a toolbox with all the parts you need to run things your way. The proof is in the pudding. Our bots will replicate the very keystrokes your accountants perform to get data out of a system at regular intervals, so they don’t have to manually log in and input that information. It’s already there for them in the way they like it done.

I could spend hours talking about all the technological power Briq has. We’ve got forecasting, AP allocation, corporate cards that sync to your budget, cloud-connected spreadsheets, and so much more. However, what Briq can do isn’t the main point. The point is in how it does it. 

Briq is malleable, flexible, and takes the shape of your business. It’s not a single product, it’s a platform to work from. That’s why we don’t charge for connectors to your other systems. Your software is part of how you run your business after all, and we’re here to help you do it better. Our software is built to fit any construction business like a glove. 

The response has been phenomenal. Fessler & Bowman went from revenue forecasting twice a year to doing so weekly, thanks to Briq. DSI has automated over ten thousand invoices in the last year using our AP allocation function. Elder Construction has saved so much time and money with Briq that they’ve gone as far to say that “Briq is like magic. It is magic actually.” 

Responses like that were exactly what Briq was made for. Helping the great people drowning in invoices, spreadsheets, and impossible forecasting. Briq isn’t just here to pull them to shore. We’re the ship that cuts through the financial storm. 

So what are you waiting for? Contact us here and set up a demo to see the magic of Briq for yourself. If our clients have taught us anything, it’s that you won’t regret it.