8 minute read
The ultimate guide to construction takeoff software
If you dread doing takeoffs, you’re not alone. Completing manual construction takeoffs with paper plans and a scale ruler is time-consuming and frustrating. It’s a process that often requires repetitive work while still resulting in inaccuracies. But material takeoffs are a necessary part of the construction business.
Every seasoned builder understands the difficulty of creating takeoffs by hand—measuring, calculating, triple-checking numbers, only to have to repeat the process with every change to the RFQ. Using Excel can help, but it won’t catch mistakes, and it’s not scalable.
Worse yet, takeoffs aren’t a task you can charge for. Hiring a dedicated estimator is costly, and it may not be enough to keep them busy, which means it’s often you stuck laboring over bids after hours and off the clock.
What is takeoff software?
Construction takeoff software eliminates manual work and inefficiencies while boosting your company’s chances of winning bids and building profit long-term. Adding takeoff software solution to your residential construction business removes the headaches by automating much of the process on-screen — measuring in a few clicks and pricing jobs in one step—helping you get back to the roles of the job you enjoy.
The top benefits of takeoff software
Takeoff software can streamline your estimating process, setting your residential construction business up for success. Today, takeoff software solutions, like Buildxact, make estimates quicker and more accurate, ultimately paying off when it comes to your bottom line.
Here are the top six benefits to use takeoff software for your residential construction business:
Faster and simpler approach to construction estimating
Bidding for jobs is hard enough. Add in the time and hassle of takeoffs, and you risk missing out on a project before the client has an opportunity to view your bottom line.
Buildxact’s automated construction estimating features and intuitive functionality mean you can do takeoffs 80% faster versus manual processes, even for users who don’t consider themselves tech-savvy.
Simply upload the project plans, scale the plans, and begin measuring on-screen. Takeoffs automatically link to item costs, combining measuring and estimating into one step.
“Using Buildxact has allowed me to have a more precise estimate for project costs, and I’m able to get takeoffs over to our material supplier,” said Jeremy De Paz, project manager at Waterloo City Construction in Austin, Texas. “My salesman at my preferred supplier loves it because I send them the takeoffs, and he just has to review them.”
Increase cost estimate accuracy and efficiency
Takeoff software eliminates repetitive estimating work in several ways, like simple templates to use over and over and supplier pricing lists that can be uploaded once and referenced across multiple projects.
Throughout the process, checklist-style estimates ensure no items are missed, helping to avoid inaccurate bids.
Win more work
Once you’ve completed an estimate, takeoff software like Buildxact turns it into an eye-catching, professional quote 5x faster than if done manually. You also can add specifications with photos, which helps further set your company apart from other bidders.
Grows with your business
Takeoff software is an excellent tool on its own. But to get the most value, it should integrate with a complete, easy-to-use project management software for every step from takeoffs to the final invoice. It includes scheduling directly from the estimate, cost tracking, and accounting.
Access takeoffs anywhere, anytime
Most takeoff software is in the cloud – all you need is a browser and an internet connection to access your bids and projects anywhere, anytime. Cloud-based takeoff software also means you don’t have to spend time organizing files, updating file permissions, emailing and attaching files to other team members, and other challenges with document management and sharing in a manual process.
Jumpstart your projects
Once you win the job using estimating takeoff software, the information from the estimate carries over, making it easy to get the project moving, to begin scheduling work, sending order reminder emails and SMSs, tracking costs, purchasing materials, and more.
Top features to look for in takeoff software
Takeoff software features support the new to most experienced estimator in the residential construction business. Automating and digitizing blueprints has never been more accessible with takeoff software like Buildxact, enabling residential builders like you to be up and running in a matter of minutes.
Here are the top four features builders like you choose takeoff software to take their business to the next level:
Takeoff and measure once
Takeoff estimate software allows you to upload a PDF of your plan, measure with a few clicks, and estimate a job in one step. Takeoffs are automatically linked to the item cost saving you time when estimating for a future project.
“The biggest benefit is that the information is saved and that when I type it back in, it’s going to pull it back up again,” said Dustin Ballew, owner of Blue Bexar Construction in San Antonio, Texas. “I don’t have to rethink all those numbers again, and I don’t have to dig through pages to find it.”
Supplier pricing built-in
Access to your supplier’s price list with takeoff software, saves you time by reducing the need for emails and phone calls to check the price of multiple items and ordering materials.
Takeoff software uses a processes that programs your calculations, saving you time and reducing errors. Buildxact’s process is called recipes. Recipes allow you to offer accurate estimates to your customers and send a list to your suppliers, faster.
For example, you can group items for a complete door opening assembly, including door, lockset, number of hinges, and the labor to install it. It makes ordering materials easier as it figures your quantities out for you automatically.
With takeoff software, once you have calibrated your plans, made corrections, and added in recipes, you can send and manage RFQs to your supplier and subcontractor using the email or SMS feature. It’s that simple.
Simple, intuitive takeoff tools
For builders concerned about the learning curve required for takeoff software, rest assured that not only is Buildxact intuitive, minimal training is needed to start using the software effectively. But when you do need a hand, a training and support network is available. Buildxact offers tech support accessible via phone or chat and FAQs all of which will get you up to speed and help you maximize your user experience.