Does Estimating Software Really Work?

Loads of paperwork caused by drawings for manual estimating process

Making an accurate tender is essential to compete in the construction industry. Whether you are a small business, or a major player in the field, your future business revolves around your skills with a tender and how you present yourself to potential clients.

Having the right tools for the job makes the difference between a winning bid, and another job lost to a competitor.

What is estimating software? How will I benefit from using it?

Estimating software provides a platform for accurate project costs to be evaluated. With a suite of tools designed to work you through every stage of costing, from initial take-off to labour costs, the software offers the power of an extensive database to make an up-to-date estimate with every cost accounted for.

Improving efficiency

It is well established that with the right tools come improved efficiency – something that is consistently true with good estimating software. Gone are the days of creating long and complex spreadsheets, replaced with an integrated database structure that allows for instant manipulation of data, tied to suppliers’ costs, to provide an instant cost of materials that could otherwise represent hours of research and data replication.

One of the more powerful aspects of professional estimating software is the inclusion of on-screen take-off. With a selection of drawing and counting tools, interacting directly with a digital PDF of the building plans, you can swiftly measure and estimate materials – and those details are saved and entered into the overall estimate automatically.

As anyone who has ever had to build estimates by hand can testify, there’s a lot that goes on the background when it comes to developing a full project quote – happily, estimating software does all that for you without the headache, and in a fraction of the time.

Improving accuracy

Minimising waste is a key consideration for construction firms. Not only is there an obvious cost associated with over- or under-estimating, but there’s all the lost time spent fixing mistakes.

By working with a detailed digital interface, with take-off tools that allow for easy revision and editing, the accuracy of your estimating process increases multiple times.

Helped with a clear visualisation of every aspect of the quote, customisable forms for printing and exporting the data, and the ability to tweak each value to properly represent the way that you work, professional estimating software minimises mistakes and can help you flag up potential problems weeks before they become an issue.

Ease of use

There’s no doubt that the manual work behind take-off and creating an accurate estimate for tender is substantial and requires detailed knowledge and understanding. It’s a set of skills that can take years to develop.

With the software taking care of some of the more complicated equations and processes, the ease of using estimating software puts power in the hands of more of your team. Of course, dedicated training and experience still play a considerable part – thankfully, that’s all available, too.

Greater understanding of the project profit

With all this information about the project collected by the estimating software, it’s easier to see how worthwhile the tender really is. Quantity surveying reports are instantly available to show profitability, as well as break down the data into customisable printouts detailing the aspects important to you.

Who is estimating software for?

Many people, especially smaller businesses, look at estimating software as something that’s the domain of larger construction companies, but the truth is that it is a tool that’s of considerable use to any company looking to create professional tenders to bid for work.

And it doesn’t matter what sector of construction you are in. Estimating software like Ensign is developed for a range of disciplines, providing the perfect tools for everyone. The system can be configured to provide the best resource in any field – as electrical estimating software, or equally for ductwork, insulation, or mechanical estimating.

At Ensign, we offer dedicated one-to-one training to make sure that you are completely comfortable with the tools and to help you set up the software to fit your business model. Each component can be tweaked to properly represent your particular working practices, and the configuration of the data tied to your model, including up-to-date pricing information drawn directly from your suppliers.

Whether you are a sole trader, or run a multi-national corporation, estimating software is here to smooth your tender process and lead you to more successful future bids.

What does Ensign offer?

On-Screen PDF Take-Off

At the core of the Ensign software is the intuitive on-screen take-off system, allowing you to take what was once an onerous task involving multiple printouts and technical drawing skills, and work on-screen instead, making accurate material estimates based directly on the construction drawings.

Once the take-off is marked using familiar and easy-to-use drawing tools, the system immediately enters the required materials into the database for further use or export.

Cloud-based software service

Never worry about your data storage, or staying up to date with software versions, as Ensign offers a full cloud-based experience for our users. This platform-independent system means that you can access Ensign in full from any internet-enabled device. Whether using a Windows PC, Apple Mac, or even a tablet, Ensign is now there for you.

Full quantity surveying system

Understanding the costs involved in your project is key. With dedicated quantity surveying systems, Ensign offers the very best in reporting and data tracking.

Full control is also in the hands of the user, allowing the adjustment of any figures to properly represent the project. Core changes, such as an alteration of a rate, is always accurately projected through the figures, ensuring there’s never a mistake with the end results.

All the information is always right at your fingertips, making project assessment a breeze.

One-to-one training

At the core of the Ensign experience is our training and support. We work with you and your team to make sure everyone is comfortable with the software and able to get the most out of it and then we’re here to help in whatever you need!

Winning tenders

Remember that first question: does estimating software really work? The answer is a resounding ‘yes’. With estimating software like Ensign, your tender process is made many times easier, taking up less time, putting less strain on yourself and your staff, and ultimately resulting in a bid that is more accurate, properly costed, and more likely to win.

It is a tool for a job, and cannot promise to do anything beyond its function, but it’s definitely the right tool for the job.

Book your demo today to find out more about Ensign estimating software.


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