Still using Excel for estimating?

Discover the Top 4 Reasons to Show Excel the Door

Show Excel the Door: Reason #1

Accounting, scheduling and estimating should work together,
but Excel can’t integrate them.

Show Excel the Door: Reason #2

Standardizing processes is good business management,
but Excel can’t handle it.

Show Excel the Door: Reason #3

Accurate estimates can boost profits and win more business,
but Excel isn’t always reliable.

Show Excel the Door: Reason #4

You need a dedicated team of construction estimating experts,
but Excel doesn’t have one.

Construction Estimating Software

Is your construction estimating software costing you time, money and job opportunities? With award-winning ProEst software, you’ll never lose revenue due to inaccurate and inefficient estimating again.

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ProEst is an innovative construction estimating solution that combines the power of SQL with the intuitive look-and-feel of Microsoft Office, which lessens the learning curve to speed adoption. With ProEst, you can create estimates, perform digital takeoffs, manage the bid day process and quickly generate detailed reports and professional proposals. In addition, adjustable markups allow you to refine each bid to take full advantage of project opportunities.

ProEst is built using the latest Microsoft technology, including a SQL database and .NET development platform. This allows us to regularly enhance our construction estimating software to keep pace with changing industry requirements. Cutting edge capabilities are designed to increase efficiencies, and integration with common business tools, leading construction accounting systems and online plan rooms extend the power of ProEst well beyond estimating.

Compare Your ProEst Options

compareProEst is available in three affordable options: Standard, Professional and Enterprise. Each ProEst construction estimating software subscription delivers:

  • A single solution with one database for storing all of your valuable estimate data, so you’ll never have to search for a missing estimate or drawing file again
  • A standardized estimating process that increases efficiency, eliminates errors and presents a consistent and professional company brand
  • Worry free maintenance that includes unlimited telephone and e-mail support, along with all product updates and enhancements

Customer Case Studies

Find out why over 8,000 leading general and specialized construction firms have selected ProEst as their construction estimating software. Our case studies give you real-world examples of how ProEst is used every day to quickly create accurate estimates.

  • With ProEst construction estimating software, Good & Roberts revolutionized its estimating processes to save 800 staff hours a year.
  • Terra Firma Landscape uses ProEst construction estimating software to cut material costs by 3% and gain a competitive advantage in a challenging construction market.
  • By using ProEst construction estimating software to increase efficiencies, GBC Construction nearly doubles their estimating output while reducing administrative overhead and divisional costs by 18%.

Industries We Service

While many construction estimating software products are designed for a single trade, ProEst is a flexible solution that contractors of all types to accurately calculate the cost of any size project – quickly and easily. Hit the ground running with an industry-specific materials database that includes pre-built items and assemblies that can easily be customized to meet your company’s unique construction estimating software requirements. Then, save time and increase accuracy by taking advantage of features and options developed specifically for your trade. Each ProEst subscription includes our entire line of materials databases. This saves you thousands of dollars when compared to other construction estimating software solutions.

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in the news

Construction Industry in Desperate Need of Skilled Workers

The field of construction may have built a large portion of the world’s greatest structures, but a recent report says the industry seems to be falling apart.

According to a news report, the construction industry’s skilled workforce is already scraping the bottom of the barrel as the country realizes its shortage of workers. Associated General Contractors of America head economist Ken Simonson said, “many construction firms across the country are having a hard time filling available positions,” and the issue is probably going to get worse.

Figures from 2006-2011 suggest that the number of workers in the construction field dwindled from 7.7 million to a significantly lower 5.4 million. Simonson added that many of the construction workers who changed jobs are not keen on returning to construction, either.

The problem with the decreasing workforce number is already taking its toll on construction businesses. A majority of U.S. construction companies reportedly experienced difficulty in filling vacant job positions. Some of the unfilled openings include positions for roofers, supervisors and project managers. As a result, some companies resorted to either increasing salaries to ensure employee retention or hiring third-party subcontractors to complete the project. Either way, these companies are losing money because of the workforce depletion.

Simonson considers lack of construction-related curriculum in schools as one of the reasons behind the problem.

“Considering how much the nation’s educational focus has moved away from teaching students career and technical skills during the past few decades, it is easy to understand why the construction industry is facing such severe labor shortages,” Simonson added.

What You Should Know About Implementing Live Camera Feeds on Your Construction Projects

Project monitoring is more than merely checking the progress of work. An effective monitoring system leads to more efficient processes, better risk calculations, and faster outputs.

Setting up a live video feed of construction projects can be a very effective tool for monitoring the entire scope of work. Camera feeds can boost the level of safety and security in the area of construction, as well as improve the documentation of the project.

Here are some of the areas where real-time video can help your construction management:

Surveillance: If you are concerned about the security of the construction site, CCTV monitors and other video-capturing devices can record what’s happening in the area. It’s best to place the cameras in the storage warehouse or in highly sensitive areas of the project.

Off-site monitoring: Managers who cannot physically visit the construction site can rest assured that the project is going as planned if they are given access to real-time feeds. They can also record sections of the video if they like.

Documentation and marketing: Video logs are great for companies who want to view archives of past projects. Recording the project in video format can also be used for promotional purposes so stakeholders can appreciate the progress of the construction.

If you are thinking about implementing live camera feeds on your construction project, here are some of the benefits of capturing the construction work on real-time video:

Better time management. Live feeds allow project managers to multi-task. Even if they’re engaged in an off-site meeting, they can still check the progress through remote video.

Safety. Is your construction site equipped with sufficient safety measures to prevent accidents? Video captures allow project managers to review the site and implement safety precautions as needed.

Archiving. Nobody can go back through time, but with the help of video recordings, you can check what happened in the past so that you can change things for the better.

I guess the only stumbling block against implementing live video feeds is cost. The company needs to shoulder expenses for camera equipment and software, installation and maintenance. However, if the cost of installing a video recording system can be justified, setting up camera feeds can definitely bring your construction projects to a whole new level.

Is your construction company’s IT system ready for growth?

One of the biggest stumbling blocks for construction companies is adaptability to upgrades. Managing a company is difficult in itself, but upgrading to the latest trends? That sounds too risky and expensive for a lot of people.

However, think about this: Do you want to strengthen your business by aligning to current standards or do you want to bite the dust? Companies today need to keep up with the latest trends – particularly in the field of IT and computing technology – in order to survive the coming years. Keeping up with trends is often less difficult and expensive than waiting for your IT systems to become obsolete and trying to play catch up later.

If you own a construction company, this is the best time to take a look at your IT system. Is it ready for new opportunities to grow along with the changing tides? Here is a quick checklist to assess if your IT system is geared up for growth:

1. Can your system handle the growing size of your company?

Any company owner wants the business to grow, but it may be crippled by a sub-standard IT system that cannot adapt to the changes.

2. Is your IT system equipped with updated software that is aligned with current standards?

A lot of construction companies are still relying on outdated software, some of which is not compatible with current operating systems and online services. The longer you delay in upgrading the system, the more costly it becomes to re-code it in the future.

3. Is your construction software framework flexible?

Changes in the business model are inevitable for any company that wants to advance. Your IT system must be able to adjust to process changes so that it will not hinder the company’s growth.

4. Can your IT system software consolidate data from individual units of your company?

Each business unit requires a specific set of data that may be different from other units. Make sure that your IT system can not only understand these diverse data sets but also combine them in a single interface that any user can understand.


If you said “no” to any – or even worse – all of the four questions, it might be best to start thinking about upgrading your IT system. You can start by investing in construction software that is flexible, can be customized, and can collate seemingly separate data into a consolidated system.

Everything You Need to Know About Drug Testing in Construction

Drug testing has gone from a non-existent practice to widespread acceptance in the construction industry over the past couple of decades. Although it initially seems like an added expense for construction companies, it actually ends up saving them money in the long run. Unfortunately, abuse of alcohol and other drugs is fairly prevalent in the construction industry. But, a comprehensive drug testing program can help weed out drug abusers.

Why test for drugs?

First off, let’s get one thing straight: drug testing is not about catching drug abusers. Drug testing is about maintaining a safe work environment and ensuring the safety and security of your employees. Saving money can be considered a fringe benefit of drug testing.

The unfortunate fact is that the construction industry is one of the top industries for drug and alcohol abuse, according to the US Department of Labor.

Construction workers are the second-highest users of illegal drugs at 15.1%, which is nearly double the US national average. The illegal drug use breakdown among construction workers is:

  • Construction laborers – 12.8%
  • Construction supervisors – 17.2%
  • Other construction workers – 17.3%

Fortunately, enacting a drug testing program has been proven to help improve workplace safety. Although it’s over a decade old, the 2002 Cornell University study An assessment of drug testing within the construction industry by JK Gerber and GS Yacoubian Jr. found that companies with drug-testing programs experienced a 51 percent reduction in incident rates within two years of implementation.

By having a drug testing program in place, you not only improve the safety of your company and save money, but you also cultivate a reputation for safety. Your clients will appreciate this and drug abusers who are looking for a job will steer clear of your company because they’ll know that you have a program in place. Plus, companies that have drug testing programs often receive discounts on their Workers’ Compensation costs.

How should you drug test?

There are three main types of drug tests:

  • urine
  • saliva
  • hair

Each has advantages and disadvantages that we will go through quickly.

Urine

By far the most common type of workplace drug testing, urine is the only type that has government guidelines drawn up for its usage.

Advantages:

  • can be done onsite
  • has instant testing component available
  • can detect drug use for up to about a week after usage
  • instant urine drug test kits require minimum training to operate
  • only positive instant testing results need to be forwarded to a laboratory for more expensive confirmation

Disadvantages:

  • invasive
  • have to procure proper facilities for collection (somewhere private with minimal traffic)
  • requires same-sex collection if observed collection is being done
  • instances of shy bladder may affect collection
  • can be cheated (although extremely difficult to cheat with observed collection)
  • drugs cannot be detected instantly after usage (but can be detected about an hour after usage)

Saliva

Saliva or oral fluid tests are currently having guidelines drawn up by the government, meaning they are becoming more common, which is good news because they are more cost effective than urine tests.

Avantages

  • non-invasive
  • can be done onsite
  • has instant component available
  • instant saliva tests require minimal training to operate
  • only positive instant testing results need to be forwarded to a laboratory for more expensive confirmation
  • does not require same-sex collection
  • can be easily observed without having to procure facilities (can be performed anywhere, even at the spot where an incident occurred)
  • can detect drugs immediately after usage
  • essentially impossible to cheat
  • more cost effective than urine testing

Disadvantages

  • can only detect drug use for a day or two after usage

Hair

Hair testing is fairly uncommon, but it is useful for pre-employment screening. Casinos in Las Vegas often do pre-employment hair testing. As body hair can be used, even people with no head hair can still be tested using this method.

Advantages

  • can detect drug use for up to three months after usage
  • does not require same-sex collection
  • virtually impossible to cheat

Disadvantages

  • invasive
  • no instant testing component available
  • cannot detect drug use until about a week after usage
  • cannot be done onsite (collection and testing must be done at a laboratory by a trained professional)
  • much more expensive than saliva or urine testing

How often should you test?

Your drug testing program will depend on a lot of factors, mainly the purpose you are testing and your budget, but there are three categories for drug testing: pre-employment, random and post-incident.

If you can fit it into your budget, a thorough drug testing program would consist of pre-employment testing done via hair testing, random drug testing done via instant urine testing with positive results sent for laboratory confirmation and post-incident instant saliva testing with positive results sent for laboratory confirmation.

However you choose to do it, a comprehensive drug testing policy is a tool that every construction company should have. It garners you trust with clients, a reputation for safety and zero tolerance among potential employees and saves you money in the long run.