Skip to content

Knowify vs. Buildertrend

Visual with Knowify and Buildertrend logos | Knowify vs. Buildertrend | Knowify

Knowify vs Buildertrend: Which construction project management software is right for you?

Both Knowify and Buildertrend are construction project management systems that offer a variety of tools to improve project workflows. But which is best for your specific business needs? To help you find the right software this article will break down everything you need to know when comparing Knowify vs Buildertrend.

Knowify logo icon in white over an orange background | Knowify

Knowify is mainly for small to midsize trade contractors and remodelers who handle multi-phase contracts and single-day service work. With a suite of project and financial management tools, Knowify saves contractors time and keeps their projects on track and within budget.

A user-friendly interface and automated features make Knowify a tool that saves your team hours of valuable time. Moreover, it gives you insights at every step of a project, so you can better understand exactly how your business is performing.

Designed for productivity and scalability, Knowify helps you create contracts and invoices, track job costs, manage change orders, and much more.

Buildertrend logo icon | Knowify

Buildertrend, is a predominantly residential construction management platform designed for custom homebuilders or GCs that handle a large number of subcontractors.

It consolidates project, customer, and service management into one platform, improving communication, tracking, and financial management. 

Key features include scheduling, budgeting, time tracking, and customer relationship management. Buildertrend integrates with other tools, centralizing construction project management.

Deciding on which software is right for your business will largely depend on two factors:

  1. Your typical customer
  2. The predominant type of work you do

Below, we’ll break down the best choice of software on the following conditions:

If you have your own team: Knowify

Running your own team (compared to subbing out your work) means you’ll need to efficiently assign tasks and manage the workload of laborers to maximize productivity and optimize resource utilization. In addition, every minute spent on the job site matters.

For this reason, tracking labor costs will be of the utmost importance. Having a tool that automatically tracks, organizes, and factors in nuanced labor information, such as labor burden, can make all the difference when it comes to boosting your bottom line. 

Moreover, you’ll need to coordinate tasks among crew members and track the availability and usage of equipment, tools, and materials to prevent shortages, delays, or overruns.

Here’s how Knowify makes all of this easier:

Efficient task assignment and workload management
  • Assign tasks and manage laborers’ workload effectively to maximize productivity and optimize resource utilization.
  • Coordinate tasks among crew members to ensure smooth workflow.
  • Track availability and usage of equipment, tools, and materials to prevent shortages, delays, or overruns.
Easy scheduling and tracking
  • With just a few clicks you can utilize Knowify to schedule and track individuals or teams for both long-term projects and single-day dispatch jobs.
Real-time monitoring and management
  • Monitor time on-site, expenses, and more effortlessly with Knowify.
  • Assign and notify teams, view project timelines, and receive automatic updates to project costs based on time logs and expenses from the field.
  • Knowify provides a mobile app that features GPS-enabled time tracking, purchasing, field notes, and more.
Enhanced communication and productivity
  • Improve communication with in-house laborer teams using Knowify’s suite of construction management tools, such as the ability to quickly view project schedules or dispatch work and assign tasks to the right teams.
  • Enhance productivity and ensure successful project delivery that is on time and on budget through the ability to review and manage your team’s timecards easily through desktop or mobile app.

If you sub out all of your work: Buildertrend

If you’re subcontracting all of your work, you’ll need the ability to manage subcontractors, including all communication, performance tracking, and payments that go along with that.

Buildertrend excels in this area with:

Bid management
  • Manage all bids efficiently, including the ability to send bid packages to all subcontractors at once, streamlining the bidding process.
The ability to manage large subcontractor teams:
  • Coordinate multiple subcontractors across various projects to ensure workflows align with timely completion.
Transparent Project communication:
  • Ensure transparency in project communication for all involved parties with Buildertrend’s collection of document sharing features.
  • Buildertrend offers features like real-time communication and project updates, facilitating collaboration between you and multiple teams of subcontractors.

If you handle multi-day jobs and jobs lasting under one day: Knowify

Knowify is the only construction management software that handles multi-phase jobs and service work in one platform.

Knowify does this through the following features:

Comprehensive management for the most common contract types
  • Structure your invoicing for cost plus, fixed price, and AIA-style contract types.
  • Knowify handles both multi-phase jobs and service work within a single platform, offering unparalleled versatility.
  • Scales with your business, accommodating larger and more complex jobs, as well as smaller single-day contracts.
  • A convenient mobile app that enables document sharing, mobile purchasing, and time tracking from the field, including the ability to track and verify clock ins/outs with GPS.
All-in-one solution
  • From creating proposals to budgeting, real-time job costing, and streamlined invoicing and payment, Knowify provides support for every step of the contract process.
  • Regardless of contract type or length, Knowify offers the tools needed to effectively manage and execute projects, from estimating to invoicing.

If you primarily work for homeowners: Buildertrend

If you work exclusively work for homeowners, you’ll have a heightened need for facilitating collaboration between homeowners, architects, and designers.

Here’s how Buildertrend helps with that:

Facilitating collaboration
  • Utilize digital blueprints, 3D models, and visualization tools to facilitate collaboration between homeowners, and all relevant project stakeholders.
Regular updates and communication channels
  • Provide homeowners with regular updates and communication channels to address questions, concerns, and change requests.
Communication tools
  • Buildertrend offers communication tools that enable contractors to create schedules, track and share progress photos, and interact with homeowners directly through an intuitive platform.
  • An intuitive client portal that enables homeowners to stay in touch with communication and project progress. 
Mobile app features
  • The Buildertrend mobile app keeps homeowners informed with project updates and allows them to make selections and approve change orders on the go, ensuring their involvement and satisfaction throughout the project.

If you primarily perform custom home builds: Buildertrend

If you primarily tackle custom home builds, then you’ll need a tool that can handle a large volume of back and forth between homeowner, architect, engineer, inspectors and any other relevant stakeholders.

Buildertrend excels in this regard with:

Effective communication management:
  • Utilize Buildertrend’s tools to manage a large volume of communication between different parties.

Features include:

  • Instant messaging for quick communication.
  • Project notes for documenting important information.
  • Task assignments to delegate responsibilities and track progress effectively.

If you use QuickBooks: Knowify

If you trust QuickBooks with your accounting you’ll need a companion tool that can help you meet the challenges of per-project financial reporting.

The key here is to find a tool that overcomes the limitations of QuickBooks for a growing construction business that handles contract work.

Here’s why Knowify is the best tool for the job:

Seamless integration with QuickBooks
  • Knowify, Intuit’s official construction software partner, offers seamless bidirectional integration with QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop.
  • Eliminate double data entry and ensure real-time synchronization, saving valuable time and reducing errors.
Efficient per-project financial reporting
  • Enjoy the ease and effectiveness of syncing your QuickBooks data alongside your project financial reporting in Knowify.
  • Scale and meet the challenges of per-project financial reporting without complicating your bookkeeping processes

Knowify vs. Buildertrend breakdown by project workflow

Next, we’ll take a look at how each software fits into a typical workflow. To do this we’ve put the top capabilities of each software for the following workflow steps:

Breakdown by project workflow




Create precise project budgets with ease
  • Use templates to quickly recreate budgets for recurring jobs.
  • Catalog parts and services to build a repository and easily allocate them to jobs.
  • Build estimates with breakdowns by cost categories: labor, materials, equipment, subcontractor fees, and miscellaneous costs.
  • Bring cost codes into estimates and seamlessly incorporate them into budgets.
Efficient takeoff solutions 
  • Buildertrend delivers templates, excel integrations, cost comparisons, and more.
  • Calculate material needs and costs. Upload drawings to get a detailed list of all materials and quantities needed.
  • Set up budgets for each project, including line items for materials, labor, and other expenses.
  • Set budget limits and receive alerts when costs exceed those limits.

Proposals / Bids

Create proposals for GCs in seconds
  • Knowify allows you to turn your project budgets into client-facing proposals in just a few clicks. 
  • Adjust your markup and see projected profitability change in real-time.
  • Get notified when your client e-signs, so you can get to work without any time wasted.
  • Easily build proposals from scratch using the products and services in your Knowify catalog.
Send bid packages to multiple subs at once
  • Buildertrend offers a variety of bidding tools for custom home remodelers fostering the ability to provide detailed specifications to subcontractors3D renderings and drawings Set deadlines and send reminders.

Team management

Tools for connecting your teams, clients, and subs
  • Knowify syncs field teams with office teams to improve collaboration and communication.
  • Create subcontracts and manage subcontractors for each job.
  • Maintain a database of subcontractor documents related to licensing and insurance, with automatic notifications for expirations or required updates.
  • Schedule individuals or roles (e.g., foreman or laborer) for specific jobs or phases, for both contract and service work.
  • Track time from the field via mobile app or enter time manually.
  • Automatically log all labor data, exportable for payroll purposes.
Professional communication with homeowners
  • Define start and completion dates in a variety of views. 
  • Add multiple tiers of work activity.
  • Group and color-code tasks and link them to dependent tasks. 
  • Quickly communicate with your field crew and subs with direct messages in the mobile app with email linking capabilities. 
    invite subs to view schedules and communicate/participate in the bidding process. 

Project management

Manage teams, tasks, and documents for every job
  • View all jobs with profitability, cost, and status at a glance.
  • Customize views by stage and workflow to fit your needs.
  • Create detailed project plans broken down by phase with assigned timelines and dependencies.
  • View project plans conveniently via a Gantt chart.
  • Receive daily logs to track progress day by day.
  • Generate and send RFIs to customers for documented responses.
  • Send submittals and request submittals from subcontractors within the same platform.
Selections, To-Dos, and warranty
  • Robust client portal. 
  • Daily logs, to-do lists, time clock, and warranty capabilities.
  • Share important project information, progress photos, and weather updates among team members, subcontractors, and clients using the document control features.
  • Field crew hours can be tracked by clocking in and out via mobile app. 
  • Fast payroll report generation. 

Change orders

Create, send, and approve change orders 

Change order tracking

  • Knowify enables you to see when change orders have been received, opened, or approved.
  • Clients can send change orders back with requested revisions.
  • Change orders are automatically factored into your invoicing schedule.

Subcontract change orders

  • Create change orders for subcontracts.
  • When a client signs off, the change order automatically becomes active.
  • Alternatively, if a change order is signed off on-site, you can quickly mark it off and set it to active when back in the office.
Document homeowner signatures for every change
  • Buildertrend provides functionality for contractors to track change order approvals and revisions.
  • Automated requests and tools for capturing homeowner signatures on documents.
  • Easily communicate and collaborate with clients in real-time.


Easily handle procurement from the office or the job site
  • Keep a list of all vendors worked with and classify them by category (e.g., equipment, subcontractors, material).
  • Create purchase orders either in the field or the office.
  • Generate flexible spending entries and log expenses with specific details such as “paid with cash,” “for reimbursement,” or “paid by credit card.”
  • Allocate purchases and expenses to specific projects and project phases for accurate tracking.
Centralized PO management for homebuilders
  • Streamlines the creation and tracking process of purchase orders.
  • Automatically updates the payment status of the associated PO,
  • Clients and subcontractors have access to their documents and agreements.

Expenses / Bills

Know your costs for every project
  • Easily bill clients for reimbursable expenses and accurately track project costs with Knowify.
  • Monitor budgets vs. actual costs efficiently.
  • Create bills for all purchases and mark items as received within the platform.
  • Conveniently email purchase orders to subcontractors or vendors.
  • QuickBooks Online Integration:
    All bills and expenses sync bidirectionally to QuickBooks Online.
  • Eliminates double data entry and ensures accurate, organized bookkeeping. 
Pay your subs with ease
  • Funds are sent online and can be deposited immediately.
  • Expense tracking and a comprehensive billing system built for handling multiple subcontractor teams. 
  • Provides a central hub to manage all project-related expenses.
  • Contractors can upload receipts for expense tracking purposes.
  • Purchase order tracking with automated updates and status tracking.
  • Assign expenses to specific projects.

Job costing

Detailed, real-time job costing
  • Knowify provides job costing tools to break down costs by cost category: labor, materials, equipment, subcontractor fees, and miscellaneous costs.
  • As team members clock in and out, labor costs update automatically.
  • Rates for labor can be set to include overtime, union dues, benefits, etc. (i.e., labor burden).
  • Get a real-time view of committed costs and their impact on profitability as materials are purchased.
  • Differentiate between owned and rented equipment and allocate costs accordingly across job phases. 
Job costing for homebuilders
  • Assign costs to specific tasks and materials within the budget.
  • Track actual costs as the project progresses.
  • Data is funneled into the budget for a comprehensive view of project management.
  • Material and labor calculations and real-time cost tracking.


Invoicing that automatically fits the your contract type
  • Flexible Invoice Formatting: Whether using fixed price, cost-plus, maintenance, AIA-style progress billing, or a combination, Knowify allows control over the format and design of invoices.
  • AIA Contract Documents Partnership: Knowify is partnered with AIA Contract Documents. Create G702 & G703 payment applications in minutes using Knowify.
Convenient payment options for homeowners
  • Workflow improvement features: Buildertrend offers customizable templates, automatic billing, and online payment options.
  • Invoice status monitoring: Contractors can easily view the status of their invoices.Receive notifications when payments are made, enhancing invoice management.

Equipment management

Know your equipment cost for every job down to the phase
  • Create a parts inventory and track them as they’re used on a job to identify hidden cost centers.
  • Add all equipment and categorize it into departments or roles with Knowify’s equipment management feature.
  • Set hourly cost of operation in the rate section to reflect equipment costs against job phases.
  • Pull reports to see which equipment was used and for how long, enabling analysis of costs incurred on a given job.
Automatically generate equipment usage reports
  • Buildertrend enables contractors to record and track equipment usage, maintenance schedules, and availability.
  • Project managers can assign equipment to specific tasks and view equipment schedules.
  • Buildertrend automatically generates equipment usage reports.


Learn and improve from past projects
  • Real-time Work-in-Progress (WIP) reporting.
  • Access all active projects through a clear, easy-to-understand dashboard.
    Knowify’s reporting focuses on project profitability and efficiency.
  • Knowify reporting shows how each project is performing in real-time, aiding in performance evaluation.
Build your own dashboards and business reports
  • Buildertrend provides budget tracking, job costing, invoicing, profit and loss statements, and customizable dashboards.
  • Additionally, Buildertrend offers WIP reporting and accrual reporting.

Knowify at a glance

Next, we’ll take a look at what each software looks like in action, including a recap of their top features and pricing information. Let’s take a look.

Knowify is an all-in-one business management platform designed for small to medium-sized contractors who:

  • Self-perform work
  • Care about keeping projects on schedule and on budget
  • Mostly perform multi-phase jobs or a mix of multi-phase and service work (single-day contracts)
  • Use QuickBooks and want to get the most from their integration

Knowify offers features such as estimating, job tracking, job costing, invoicing, proposals, and more, all accessible through a single user-friendly interface. 

See how Knowify can help you keep jobs on-budget, organized, and profitable


Knowify has four pricing levels. The first level is known as Kbase. Kbase costs $48/month, and allows you to get up and running with managing proposals, estimates, and contracts. 

Buildertrend pricing: 3 plans (Essentials, Advanced, Unlimited) | Knowify vs. Buildertrend | Knowify

If you need to manage 10 to 25 active jobs and want budgeting, bidding, job costing, and invoicing capabilities, then the Essentials and Advanced packages are a better fit for your business.

The Advanced package also includes scheduling, project management, subcontractor management, and advanced workflows. 

If you have more than 25 active jobs, you’ll want to look into Knowify’s Ultimate package. Pricing for Ultimate is customized to your business needs. You can book a demo with Knowify’s team to learn more. 

Read more about top features

Budgeting & bidding
With Knowify, businesses can easily create and manage project budgets, including initial estimates and any change orders. This allows for more accurate bidding and helps businesses stay on track with their budget during the project. The platform also provides tools for creating professional-looking bids and proposals to win more projects.

End-to-end project management
Knowify offers a comprehensive project management solution that covers all aspects of a project from start to finish. Users can create and track projects, assign tasks and deadlines, communicate with team members, and monitor progress in real-time. This ensures that every project is well organized and efficiently managed. 

Advanced job costing
Knowify’s job costing feature allows users to accurately evaluate the cost of materials, labor, and other expenses for each project. However, Knowify lets you take your job costing to the next level by enabling you to break jobs down into phases. This means you can evaluate labor, material, and equipment costs for each specific stage of a job. This means you can get unprecedented clarity on exactly where and how you’re making money on jobs or where you need to improve efficiency. Through these features, you’ll know the exact cost control measures you need to take to improve profitability. With Knowify, you can confidently compare actual costs with your estimated costs through a real-time, easy-to-read reporting system that lets you know exactly where you stand financially on each project. 

When it comes to giving contractors complete control over the format and structure of their invoices, few platforms come close to matching Knowify’s capabilities. Progress billing is where Knowify stands out, as you can quickly create AIA payment applications that automatically track what has been billed, will instantly incorporate and reconcile change orders with a GC ledger, and will clearly show the status of bills that are overdue through an intuitive work-in-progress (WIP) reporting system. 

Seamless QuickBooks Online integration
Knowify’s integration with QuickBooks is designed specifically to overcome the limitations of QuickBooks for construction businesses. This means there’s no better way to eliminate double data entry than with Knowify. With this bi-directional sync, data is only entered once, ensuring your entire team, from the field to the accountants in the office, are on the same page.

With tools for accurate budgeting and bidding, end-to-end project management, precise job costing, and customizable billing and invoicing, Knowify will empower you to efficiently manage projects, control costs, and win more contracts. 

Buildertrend at a glance

Buildertrend is a cloud-based project management software best suited for:

  • General Contractors who sub out most or all of their work
  • Home Builders who primarily work for homeowners
  • Custom Home Builders 
Screenshot of Buildertrend's customer portal | Knowify vs. Buildertrend | Knowify

Buildertrend provides comprehensive project management tools that can streamline operations for general contractors overseeing various types of custom/complex residential construction projects. More specifically it’s for general contractors who need to have open coordination and communication between a large set of subcontractors. 

For companies focused on residential construction, Buildertrend offers features tailored to home building, such as scheduling, budgeting, and client communication tools to ensure homeowners are in the loop. 

In addition, Buildertrend offers customization options making it ideal for custom home builders who need to adapt workflows and project management tools to the unique requirements of complex home builds that require coordination between multiple stakeholders like architects, designers, and city officials.


As of March 2024, Buildertrend offers three levels of pricing packages starting at $199/mo and going upwards of $799/mo.

Buildertrend pricing: 3 plans (Essential, Advanced, Complete) | Knowify vs. Buildertrend | Knowify

The first package, known as Essential, starts at $199/mo but jumps to $499/mo after one month of use. Essentials includes tools for planning and managing jobs to improve job level efficiency through communication and job site planning capabilities. 

The Advanced package starts at $499/mo and jumps to $799/mo after one month of use. This level comes with comprehensive construction software for project management, including estimating tools, financial planning capabilities, and a sales management platform. 

The Complete package starts at $799/mo and increases to $1,099/mo after one month of use. This is Buildertrend’s most robust pricing package for contractors looking for tools that can help manage the entire workflow of projects. 

Read more about top features

Buildertrend’s takeoff capabilities aim to improve how contractors begin residential construction projects to ensure successful project execution. With integrated job planning and management features, users can upload blueprints, record measurements, and create precise estimates.

Allowances & selections
With Buildertrend you can reduce overages and assist clients in staying on budget during material and fixture selection. The Selections feature keeps clients engaged and organized throughout the process, making it less overwhelming for homeowners. 

Mobile app
Buildertrend’s mobile app allows you to easily adjust schedules from the field in addition to a selection of quality-of-life features such as linking daily logs, uploading photos and documents, and the ability to create punch list items and send them directly to your subcontractors. 

Customer portal
Buildertrend gives clients direct access to projects with a unique login to a dashboard where they can track progress, send messages, and sign contracts electronically. It also boasts a file storage and messaging system that you can use to communicate with your team, subs, and clients with direct messages in the app 

In addition, to ensure a successful onboarding, Buildertrend offers a comprehensive training and support program that caters to each contractor’s individual needs. This includes the option of attending Buildertrend University, a two-day hands-on conference, or utilizing on-site consulting and online resources through their learning academy and dedicated support team.

Final thoughts

When deciding which software is best for your business, it comes down to what you care about most: financials or client communication capabilities.

If you need robust financial tracking and automation, Knowify’s suite of financial software is unmatched for small to mid sized contractors who need to organize their bookkeeping and accounting on a per-project basis.

The financial stability and visibility that Knowify gives with invoicing, purchasing, and expense management is unmatched by any other construction management software on the market.

Buildertrend, on the other hand, is built mainly for contractors who primarily sub out most of their work or extensively work with homeowners on large home remodeling projects.

While Buildertrend covers a wide range of functionality and will help keep jobs organized, the financial capabilities don’t offer the same breadth of functionality as their communication and client services.

Manage projects from start to finish with Knowify

Save hours every day with streamlined project workflows that keep your entire team on-task, on-budget, and on the same page. 

Schedule a demo today to see how Knowify can help you take more control of your business. Request Demo