Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs

FAQs


What is GradeBeam?

GradeBeam is the only fully managed communication network built by and for the construction industry. By providing a secure, online resource for the exchange of information, GradeBeam allows industry professionals to post, manage, and access critical project information at a central location. GradeBeam simplifies and expedites the massive information exchange that occurs in the pre-construction phases of projects, including Invitations-To-Bid (ITBs), drawing/specification distribution, corrections, addenda, requests for information, and responses. By leveraging the newest information and communication technologies, GradeBeam enables general contractors, subcontractors, and printers to CONNECT, COMMUNICATE and CONSTRUCT.


Can I send messages to companies that are not GradeBeam members?

Yes! Email and/or fax messages can be sent through GradeBeam regardless of whether or not the recipient company is a member of GradeBeam. Non-members are able to receive and respond to emails/faxes but only GradeBeam members have full access to the GradeBeam communication network.


Are the messages legible and informative? Can our logo be attached?

Yes. GradeBeam messages include all of the information necessary to review project opportunities in detail including who the message is from, company logo, who the message is to, project name, project location, bid due date, trade descriptions, printer information, customizable project information, etc. Subcontractors can even use the ITB response form to quickly notify the sender if they are bidding and to place print orders. GradeBeam even has messaging features for fast Addendum Notification, ITB Reminders, and Project Memos. A user can quickly broadcast messages within minutes and without having to manage or look-up the subcontractor’s contact information in another location. GradeBeam is capable of processing thousands of messages a minute to both email and fax.


Can other companies access my project information or bidders lists?

GradeBeam is designed to allow users to control who has access to their project information. The only companies that see the project information are those that have been privately invited to bid on the project. Those private bidders are the only companies that have access to the project information and can respond, but they cannot see who the other bidders are. GradeBeam also has a Public Opportunities Bulletin Board where project information can be posted for any GradeBeam user to bid on, but the general contractors must choose to post the information there, and members cannot see the bidders’ lists.


Does GradeBeam have documents available for viewing and printing online?

GradeBeam allows users to post electronic documents to the website for subcontractors to view and/or download. These documents can be posted in their original format including spreadsheets, schedules, drawings, pictures, and more. GradeBeam also links directly to local printing companies that can scan and post documents to their plan rooms for easy access by all companies involved in the project. The printing companies also receive automatic print orders from the system notifying them of the general contractors, the project, which subs are bidding, which documents should be distributed to each sub, who is paying for prints, who is paying for shipping, and where the prints should be delivered or if the sub will pick them up. The printing companies can then distribute the plans, update GradeBeam with pricing, notify the general contractors which subs have received prints and even post shipping tracking numbers for any documents that are shipped to the subcontractors.


Does GradeBeam offer training or help support?

GradeBeam is extremely user friendly and fast. It was designed by and for the construction industry with an operational approach to the communication process. GradeBeam has a Quick Start Instructional Packet so you can benefit from the tools immediately, and there is detailed information located in the website Help links. It is very easy to get up and running on GradeBeam, but training is also available. Live GradeBeam Customer Support is ready to answer questions via phone, fax or email during regular working hours. Users may call 866-ITBS-NOW (866-482-7669) or email Support@GradeBeam.com. GradeBeam is a great tool for strengthening face-to-face business relationships as a result of the time saved by efficiently distributing critical information with GradeBeam's communication network.


Does GradeBeam sell Subcontractor lists?

No. GradeBeam does not sell Subcontractor lists. GradeBeam is a single platform built to improve communication for the entire construction industry. GradeBeam has a general database of subcontractor contact information with hundreds of thousands of companies nationwide, and the GradeBeam database is only available to GradeBeam members. Every day GradeBeam researches new Subcontractor and Supplier information all over the country and continually adds it to the database. GradeBeam will compare your preferred Subcontractor list to the general database and notify you which companies are listed in GradeBeam and which are not. We will then load the missing companies to the database upon your request, or you can add them to the system privately so that no other members can see your Subcontractors listed in GradeBeam, and you can still send project information to them.


Does GradeBeam track hits by Subcontractors that look at our projects?

GradeBeam tracks all messages and bid responses submitted through the system. This is done down to the level of which person received the message, when the message was sent, where the message was sent (email or fax), who looked at the message online and even shows an exact copy of the message. GradeBeam also tracks which companies and which users download files from the website and when. Furthermore, GradeBeam tracks the plan and specification distribution process to ensure quick and accurate communication of all pertinent project information.


What is the cost of GradeBeam for General Contractors?

GradeBeam charges a flat annual membership rate for all members. This fee includes unlimited users, unlimited projects, and unlimited bid invitation messages. As a part of the messaging services, GradeBeam updates all of the non-member subcontractor database information. GradeBeam also manages all failed fax and e-mail messages by contacting the recipient, correcting their information within the database and resending the messages. GradeBeam allows General Contractor Members to eliminate the man hours that they are wasting on database management, messaging, and plan distribution so they can focus on the essential aspects of project estimates and contract negotiations. Furthermore, there are no additional charges for bid invitation faxing through GradeBeam. All of this is included in the flat annual fee. To receive a personalized quote and a demo contact us


What is the cost of GradeBeam for Subcontractors & Suppliers?

Subcontractors & Suppliers do not have to be members of GradeBeam to receive messages and project information via Email or Fax from the system. Companies that want to access GradeBeam's Construction Directory, Public Opportunities Projects, and Communication Tools pay annual fee per year to have full access to GradeBeam. Membership also allows Subcontractors and Suppliers access to control their own company information, marketing, and business qualifications for the thousands of professionals that search through GradeBeam every day.