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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3 Things to Remember When You Talk to Your Teams About Errors

Nobody’s perfect. No matter how well-planned and systematic a construction project is or how skillful the workers are, some things are really out of our control and are bound to go downhill. Teams are composed of human beings who make mistakes. As a project owner or manager, you have to accept this reality.

While any error is bad, it can be magnified further when people involved in the construction work don’t realize that the error has occurred until it comes to a point when irreparable damage has been done. If it’s not addressed as soon as possible, it can become the major reason for failure of a project.

Faced with these two realities – that errors may occur, and that they should be addressed immediately – the first thing to do when a team is faced with errors is to talk about it. This is, of course, easier said than done, as group discussions may lead to finger-pointing and personal judgment rather than coming up with solutions. If you lead a project team, here are some tips on how to discuss errors with your members:

1. Set the tone of the discussion. People directly involved in the incident may become defensive and will tend to want to cover their butts. Assure everyone on the team that you’re having the discussion to address the problem, and not to deal with the problem makers. As you start the discussion, the error should already have been identified and everyone made aware of it so that your team is not in an agitated and panicked mindset. During the discussions, do not linger on the negative effects of the error. Rather, focus on the root causes so that you can come up with preventive measures for the future.

2. Brainstorm solutions to the problem with your team without dismissing any ideas in the beginning. Brainstorming involves collecting the members’ ideas without filtering anything out, no matter how outrageous they may sound. Once you’ve exhausted the ideas, you can start discussing the points one by one.

3. Make a report. More than just a paper to present to the big bosses, an incident report contains the error, its root causes, the corrective actions made, and any preventive measures that you want to put in place. This allows not only your team but also the entire organization to learn from what happened.

Errors may be painful and costly, but in the end, they can be seen as opportunities for the company to improve on current practices. They also provide venues for employees to provide suggestions and give them ownership of their jobs. Mistakes, we all make ‘em and we can all learn from ‘em.

The Benefits of Integrating with Your Accounting ERP Database

This is a guest blog post from Missy Stein with Procore.


 

Project managers need accurate financial data to help inform and influence project related decisions from the field. Often these decisions need to be made quickly and if the data is not readily available, field staff must contact accounting to obtain that data. This can cause costly delays that can negatively impact the project.

Financial details are pertinent whenever decisions need to be made in the field. Without access to current accounting data, users must instead rely on guesswork from manually entered information. Accounting integration allows teams to be confident that accurate financial data is available instantly from any mobile device or web browser.

Contract Management

One of the main advantages of accounting integration is the ability to enter subcontracts and purchase orders within your project management solution and push that data directly to accounting. An accurate reflection of committed costs will then be visible in accounting without any need for duplicate data entry.

The older method for duplicating accounting data involved entering commitments in your project management solution and then going to the accounting system to retype the same information. This obviously takes more time, but also results in the risk of incomplete or incorrect data.

Reduction of manual data entry reduces the risk of errors.

Cost Management and Forecasting

Project managers out in the field need to manage costs and create forecasts. Once the cost of a particular piece of a job has been estimated and a dollar amount has been committed, project managers need to see how much has been paid on commitments to make budget projections. Immediate, accurate data reflecting the current budget and what has been spent thus far makes forecasting more efficient and accurate.

Having access to this accounting data in real-time also increases flexibility and preparedness for people out in the field. Since all data is accurate and current, employees can be certain that it can be used to positively inform any decisions that have to be made while on location.

For example, take a hypothetical scenario where a project manager is looking at costs. The project manager knows that they are 85% complete with the current section, but costs are already at 90% of what was estimated. With accounting data available in your construction software, he will have the ability to see a red flag—cost to complete is likely going to exceed the estimate, and cut into profits. With constant access to this on this real-time information, intelligent decisions can be made much faster with more accuracy and confidence.

Every time a contract adjustment is made, a commitment is entered, or a change order is submitted, integrated accounting data allows all steps to be completed entirely within one database. The beauty of cloud-based construction project management software is having the power and efficiency to provide your entire field staff and office staff with vital project information all in one centralized repository.

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3 Reasons Construction Companies Fail When Trying to Predict Injuries

Workplace safety is one of the best things that a company can boast of. Taking care of its employees and making sure that their places of work are safe and hazard-free marks it as a company that people want to work for and that people can trust to build their project without any undue concern.

Construction companies should always be on the lookout for safety in the workplace. The company owner should understand that an unsafe and injury-prone work environment could lead to lost man hours, higher cost of employee hospitalization and absences, an increase in Workers’ Compensation premiums and delays in construction projects.

Some construction firms are still not able to prevent injury cases despite the implementation of predictive analytics for accident and hazard prevention. Some companies simply do not use these preventive techniques effectively. Here are three reasons why construction companies fail when trying to predict injuries:

Reason 1: Using the wrong tool

Sure, logging accident reports on simple software such as Microsoft Excel can be helpful to keep track of past incidents. However, if you want to prevent similar hazards from happening in the future, you must utilize applications designed for predictive analytics.

At times, you will notice that the same hazard is being encountered over and over again. With predictive analytics and suitable software, you should be able to remove this hazard altogether.

Reason 2: Failing to collect enough data

Safety data may be gathered through on-site inspection, process audits, root cause analysis, and inventory of aspects contributory to accidents at the workplace. If you plan to use predictive analytics software, the amount of data that you collect must be comprehensive enough for the machine to understand and assess possible scenarios. Unfortunately, data gathering that is considered sufficient for the predictive machine’s algorithm could take years. In short, this is probably the most common reason why predictive analytics tools are not maximized by construction industries.

Reason 3: Not trusting equipment

Many construction firm owners started as small home-based businesses, and data processing was done manually. If you are interested in using predictive analytics to avoid injuries at work, you need to put your trust in the predictive machine that you will use. Gone are the days when you rely solely on your own assessment and problem-solving capabilities. You must understand that computer algorithms are much more comprehensive than what an average human person can process and they are consistent.

Predictive analytics can be a construction firm’s best friend. They are useful and can help you prevent injuries if used correctly and consistently.

How to Choose the Right Screed for Your Construction Project

Construction workers who pour concrete are familiar with using a screed, a device used to smooth concrete after being applied on a surface. Simply pouring concrete mix onto the road will produce, well, a big pile of concrete mix. A screed flattens out the poured mixture to produce a level surface.

There are many types of screeds on the market, and choosing which one to use will depend on how big the project is, how flat the concrete surface should be, and what kind of concrete mixture is used. If you’re scratching your head right now, here are the different types of screeds that you can use as a guide to choose the right screed for your project:

Wooden
The simplest and cheapest type of screed is a piece of wood – usually a 2×4 – that is manually applied onto the concrete surface. After pouring the mix, the concrete is smoothed out by running the wooden screen manually over the concrete. While this type is one of the least expensive, the results may not be as accurate as the others. It’s generally good for do-it-yourself projects around home.

Roller
This type is best used on roads and highways, and when handling low slump concrete. Some variants are handheld while others are motor-driven. Roller screeds can also be used in ramps, steep slopes, and uneven base surfaces.

Mechanical
Although most of the variants of this type of screed are handheld, mechanical screeds involve motor-driven vibrations that propel the screed forwards and backwards. The person handling a mechanical screed only needs to control the motor. This type is beneficial in small construction projects such as sidewalks and driveways.

Laser
The most expensive type of the lot but producing the best quality is the laser screed. This type is characterized by a motor-operated vibrator, an auger, and a plow. The operator can control the laser screed through a joystick to steer and rotate the screed. Output is a near-perfect level concrete surface done in a single pass.


All in all, choosing which type of screed depends on the project budget and size. The construction company and the project owner must strike a balance between output quality and overall expense.

Early Adoption of Google Glass Can Help with Inevitable Technology Adaptation

Construction company personnel and those who know a thing or two about construction are probably familiar with goggles. This protective equipment shields the eyes of construction workers from possible hazards, while still enabling them to see what they are doing.

Have you noticed that a pair of goggles reminds you of certain a trending technology recently released by Google? One look at Google Glass, and you’re sure that it can fit right into the construction industry – well, aesthetically speaking, that is.

But, while the features of Google Glass are amazing in any field of specialization that it’s used in, the hefty price tag takes company owners aback.

Still, the potential of Google Glass to improve construction projects cannot be ignored. Here are some of the possible benefits of Google Glass in the construction industry:

Breakthrough concept that works for the future

It cannot be denied that the technology of Google Glass gives us a glimpse of what’s in store in the future. Using Google Glass now can give any construction company an edge in terms of technology and adaptability to change. Some Glass applications for the construction field are already available for commercial or industrial use such as FieldLens, which aims to improve project site communication between contractors, designers, subcontractors, and building owners.

Template for future technology

Using Google Glass today might seem limiting due to its poor battery power and limited applications. However, when companies start using this kind of technology, they are preparing the company to use high-tech products that are still to come. Call it a prototype or template of things to come.

Convenient mobile project management

Despite the limited amount of software available for the construction industry, Google Glass is already pretty handy by itself. Its hands-free design is excellent for multitasking individuals who need their hands to do something else besides taking a picture of the job site or sending text messages to contractors. It’s only a matter of time before software makers develop better apps to enhance the power of Glass.


Sure, the $1,500 price of Google Glass may seem too steep for a construction company that has hundreds of workers, however, taking the future of the construction industry into consideration, do you want to be left eating the dust of your competitors who might already be using cutting-edge technology?