The construction industry is constantly expanding, and statistics show that in the United States alone in 2018, there is an expenditure of 1.231 BILLION dollars in construction. But with all these constructions going on, did you ever wonder how these construction companies get a piece of that pie?
Construction companies, as well as subcontractors, get most of their jobs thru bidding. A construction bid is a process where the construction form presents a potential client with a proposal to build a building.
Before we go any further in our discussion, let’s first define two terms that are used in the construction industry: estimate and bid. Although these two terms are sometimes used interchangeably, they are not the same.
An estimate is the calculation of the CONTRACTOR’s internal cost, and this includes materials and labour while a bid is a final price charged to the CLIENT.
In construction bids, the contractors have one golden rule: Start with highly accurate cost estimates and then, submit the lowest bid. And this starts with looking at the construction plans (which are provided by the would-be client) and performing a material quantity takeoff. This sounds simple at the get-go, but it’s an extremely laborious and tedious process and, and construction companies in a bid to make estimates are as accurate as possible are turning to construction estimating bidding software.
The best construction bidding management software simply put is a program designed for the construction industry to streamline the estimated construction cost for a project making the bidding process faster. The faster you can finish one bidding estimate, the faster it is you can go on to the next bid. Bidding after all in a numbers game – the more projects you bid on, the more likely it is you will get one.
If you are on the lookout for the best construction bidding software for your construction company, how do you start? Do you just get one right off the shelf? Here are a few things that you might want to consider shopping around for the best construction bidding software.
CHOOSING A CONSTRUCTION BIDDING SOFTWARE
1. Talk to Your Team
Before researching specific vendors or calling up salespeople, the first thing that you should do when choosing the best constructions bidding software is to have a clear cut idea on what you want the software to do.
Generally, you want the software to help streamline your estimation process, increase its accuracy and efficiency and of course make more money with fewer headaches. You would want a system that would mirror what your estimator does.
Your estimating team, the management staff that finalizes the estimate and your IT department are the best people to start off with.
2. Research And Determine The Type of Solution to Look For
In choosing the right bidding software for your company, do a bit of sleuthing around and check what software is available out in the market. Read about the features that this software offers as well as read the reviews from people who have used the software. But, it’s a good idea not to automatically go with the software with the most features. Go instead for a software which has the features that you’ll actually use.
Some question that you’ll want to be asking are:
- Will this software save time for my estimators, and if it does, how much time?
- Is the software database geared towards my industry?
- What type of support does it offer?
- Will it help reduce errors?
At the least, go with a reputable company. This software companies should have a good reputation in the construction industry and understands your estimation requirements.
3. Determine Its Ease of Use
In choosing the best construction estimating and bidding software for your company, usability should be on your top priorities. If it’s easy to use for the least tech-savvy person in your team, then this could be the right estimating software for your company.
One of the best indicators for its ease of use is the time spent to install implement it. If an outside IT team must come and assist with its technical specifications to make it up and running, then, it’s probably not the easiest software to use, and you might want to take a second look at it.
Here are some questions that might be of help when determining a software’s ease of use
- How much time is needed to train employees to use this new system?
- How long will it take to install this software in the company?
- What is the status for the after sales support for this system? Is it via phone, email or online chat? Is it free and easily accessible?
- Will additional IT supports be needed to upgrade it in the future?