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November 12, 2019

Why Contractors Need Cost Estimating Software

estimatingContractorsAll general contractors and specialty contractors need to create accurate cost estimates quickly to win more bids and increase their profits. Producing accurate estimates manually can be a tedious and difficult task. That’s why every contractor needs to use cost estimating software.

Most large contractors already appreciate the benefits of estimating software which includes accuracy, speed, data integration, quick digital takeoffs and efficient report generation. For the smaller contractors who feel they aren’t yet ready to invest in an effective estimating solution, here’s a brief discussion of the benefits of using modern cloud-based cost estimating software.

Error-Free Estimates

Accuracy is one of the most important benefits of estimating software. Without an accurate estimate, you’ll either bid too high or too low for a project, and such bids will eventually be rejected. If you make many inaccurate estimates, you’ll end up winning fewer contracts each year.

Your bid has to be both accurate and competitive for you to win. Even if you decide to reduce your cost estimates, you’ll end up with a suspiciously low bid, which will raise a red flag and eventually be turned down.

In addition to putting up accurate cost estimates, you’ll also need to create error-free material for your take-off documents. Creating an accurate takeoff from a paper blueprint can be a very difficult task, and this is a very critical aspect of creating an accurate project estimate.

For a takeoff to be accurate, it needs to incorporate material costs that are close to the current market value. They must also have an accurate estimate of the total number and cost of materials instead of just stating bulk material prices.

Sage Estimating software, a robust cost estimating software, takes care of many of the problems associated with producing accurate takeoffs. It eliminates many of the instances where human error may cause inaccurate estimates. With digital takeoff software, you don’t have to keep performing mathematical calculations manually. You can also avoid data entry errors that make estimates in spreadsheets inaccurate.

Sage Estimating software can obtain costs for frequently used materials in different ways. It can allow the contractor to build up a database with commonly used materials and their costs. But the contractor needs to update this regularly because prices change often.

However, if you choose a solution like Sage Estimating, you’ll have access to a database of materials and their cost, which comes with the software. This database contains the materials used in projects and their costs in various parts of the country. These costs are updated regularly, and you don’t have to call suppliers each time you want to create an accurate estimate.

Fast Turnaround

Manual estimation takes a long time to complete. For large or small projects, creating an accurate estimate is usually a long and challenging task. But a contractor must secure new contracts to remain profitable. So, speeding up the time it takes to complete estimates is absolutely essential.

Modern estimating software like Sage Estimating has robust functionality that handles different types of data (text, documents, photos, drawings and videos) with an intuitive and user-friendly interface. This fits into the typical workflow of most estimators and improves efficiency.

Complete Information in One Place

When the documents, data and facts you need to create your estimate are located in a single place, it makes the task quicker and less prone to error. It also reduces the number of people required to produce estimates in your company. When you have all the data and information you need to create your estimate in one place, you can easily format and customize the display of information to suit your purpose.

Easy Data Sorting

Sage Estimating allows you to render your data in a presentable way that enhances your workflow. There are different sorting options that allow you to improve the presentation of your information. You can sort data by work breakdown structure or according to each phase of the project.

Capacity to Create Digital Takeoffs

Sage Estimating is an advanced estimation software that enables you to create digital takeoffs. It can reduce the time required to produce the takeoff by half. The digital takeoffs can be produced directly from blueprints. This allows you to avoid all the steps you would take to produce it manually.

It’s important to note that not all estimating software has an integrated digital takeoff capability. So, you need to ask for a demo of the takeoff feature and make sure it satisfies your requirements. Using software with integrated digital takeoff capability, like Sage Estimating, will save you the time and hassle involved in using two different applications for your cost estimation

Accurate Markups

For every project, you need to add a margin or markup to ensure that your project is profitable. Doing this manually can be a strenuous exercise. There are so many material costs to consider, and you don’t want to leave any out or add the wrong markup of any figure. However, with your estimating software, you can add the profit markups automatically and determine whether the bid will be profitable.

Efficient Reporting

Efficient reporting gives you an edge over your competitors. When you use Sage Estimating, you’ll enjoy its range of robust reporting features. It can create reports from pre-formatted report settings or through the custom reports you design and save for future use.

You’ll save the time you may have used to create the reports manually using a spreadsheet or word processing program. The built-in report facility allows you to create reports rapidly, save money and eliminate delays. You’ll avoid the errors that usually occur when you move data from one program to another. You may also use the reporting feature to track important information, do a cost analysis and create materials lists for suppliers.

All the features of construction estimating software can offer a general and specialty contractors immense benefits. They can help form more accurate estimates, increase speed, create fast and accurate takeoffs and make reporting more efficient.

To learn more about how Sage Estimating can boost your profits as a general or specialty contractor, request a live demo now.

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