If your construction business is still using Microsoft Excel as a way to track and report all of your bids, it’s time you learned that you’re missing out on valuable industry-specific tools that will better integrate your business practices and even increase your profitability.
Sure, you’ve probably heard stories about confusing software applications that have successfully deterred you from switching before now. You may even think your project and finance management methods are fine as is — it could be you’re perfectly happy knowing that Excel is a simple, straight-to-the-point solution.
So exactly what will you gain from switching to construction estimating software, you ask? Well, the benefits are copious. To start with, an industry-specific estimating solution will streamline your project finances and provide you with more accurate estimates. Investing in a specialized estimating software will also save you countless hours of manual calculations, so you can spend your time on more productive tasks. Gone will be the days when you need to manually enter all financial details, as will be the days spent scouring your entire spreadsheet to find the error throwing off your expense report.
Also keep in mind that many construction estimating solutions exist as part of a broader construction management platform, offering you even greater consolidating capabilities. Even if you opt for an estimating-specific application (they tend to be more affordable), you’ll still have access to state-of-the-art analytics and reporting tools that will make your software more efficient. And smaller businesses will benefit as much as larger ones from a trade-specific estimating platform — the advanced features will give your business an advantage over your Excel-using competitors.
For those devoted Excel users still not convinced to make the switch, here are 4 ways in which a construction estimating platform will uncomplicate your current business methods.
We can only think of a few reasons when transferring your estimations to an industry software option might not make sense. The top one would probably be if you own a VSB (maybe as a side business), only have a couple of clients per year (we’re thinking 5 or fewer), and have incredibly tight operating costs. In this instance Excel might work just fine for you, particularly if you don’t want to spend the money for a construction estimating system.
But if you have at least 5 clients yearly and can afford a construction estimating solution — even a relatively cheap and simple version — you’ll likely find the industry-specific features well worth the rate. In the end, the time such a product will save you (especially in manual entry and error corrections) will only benefit your company and give you a competitive edge, regardless of business size.
Looking for more information on accounting software? Check out our side-by-side comparison of leading platforms in the Top 10 Construction Software report.