Intra Interieur is a Belgian full-service interior architecture firm based in Ghent. They offer the full service - they design beautiful interiors and also do cost control and project management on behalf of their customers.
Originally, Intra Interieur utilized Excel for managing construction budgets. But that wasn’t a good solution.
“It’s too easy to make mistakes in Excel and too hard to find out how it happened,” says Frank Martens, business owner and interior architect at Intra Interieur.
“We have designers, not accountants. But designers want to design and not spend lots of time doing cost control.”
So, they started looking for a tool that could simplify job costing.
Looking for software to replace Excel with
They spent a long time trying to find a good tool.
At first they tried out several potential solutions from the US but neither of them worked out. The localized versions for the Belgian market didn't exist and the support wasn’t there either. The bugs didn’t seem to get any attention and at one point they even lost some of the data but the software provider wasn’t able to recover it.
Plus volume calculations were missing. So, they still needed to use Excel in addition to the software.
They then tried a Belgian solution which is specifically built for the architects in Belgium. But the tool felt too cumbersome and old-school. It wasn’t really built for the cloud although it could work in the cloud.
They wanted something easy-to-use and user-friendly. Finally they came across Planyard.
The first impressions of Planyard
“The difference with other tools we’ve tried is that Planyard is really easy to use,” comments Frank.
It took them several weeks to learn other tools. But they got how Planyard works in a day or two. There were no annoying popups at every step but the help was there when they needed it. So, onboarding others in the team was a lot easier.
In addition, Planyard is also available in Dutch and French. The contractors who don’t know English can still understand how to send progress reports and invoices.
Getting ready to grow with Planyard
“Planyard has given us peace of mind - we know that the budgets done in Planyard are reliable and up-to-date”, says Frank.
Another benefit is that they’ve managed to standardize processes.
“We now have the possibility to grow, we can have more people working the same way.” He adds: “It’s very hard to achieve that in Excel - each person has their own way of doing things.”
This means that they can hire new people and, for example, create the same estimate as others would have done, even if they still have to learn the basics of estimating.
They are sure that Planyard is going to save them time as well. Especially when it comes to collecting invoices and progress reports - verifying that data is way easier now.
The designers at Intra Interieur can now spend more time on what they love the most - designing beautiful interiors. The time that goes to budget management and cost control is reduced by a lot.