By Colin Sheehan, RCS Reporter.
Estimating software is an incredible technological tool that contractors can utilize to eliminate incorrect data and human error while increasing efficiency and overall data accuracy. Because estimating software plays a vital role in your company, deciding the right software for you and your business is no small task. Joe Pettit and Mike Mauw from Estimating EDGE understand that a software decision should be made with careful consideration and wrote this E-book to help you make the right decision.
Their article is sectioned into five parts, each highlighting an important consideration when choosing an estimating software. Those five sections include:
1. Longevity, experience and innovation – Look at a company’s track record and experience in the industry. See what kind of special features the program offers and how they have evolved over time. Finding an innovative company that is always seeking to improve and enhance their software is preferred.
2. Partnerships, support and training – Unfortunately, there is no “perfect” software capable of handling everything on its own, but there are many helpful software integrations. Programs that can communicate between each other can greatly enhance your daily workload. It’s also important that all programs match your long-term business goals.
“Think through what you need in your company, not just for today but what you think you will need three to five years down the road. Whatever you purchase will need to be able to grow with you,” advises Joe.
3. Customization and training – Estimating EDGE can modify its software for each individual contractor in order to best suit their needs. The EDGE also provides trainings and support during the software implementation process. These qualities are vital to find in a software company, for this ensures the software will do what it’s meant to: improve your workflow.
“The setup phase is critical, so we take the time to hear the client out, to learn about what their specific needs are, and at the end of the day they know that the EDGE is a trusted part of their team,” said Mike.
4. Security, access to data, backups – Online security and data backup should be considered when choosing a software program. Fortunately, the days of manually backing up data are long gone with cloud-based platforms enhancing the way data is stored and saved. However, it remains important to ask questions such as where your data will be stored, who has access and what the company’s data recovery process looks like.
5. Find your inside champion – Before implementing a new software be sure to find two key employees who can serve as champions for the software. These employees will be involved in operating the software and getting the rest of the team up to speed. Be sure to talk to your team to see who’s interested and let them be part of the selection process.
“It has to be someone who knows the company well enough to be able to help set things up without bringing the entire company into it. Once the database is customized for your company it makes it much easier to bring the other estimators onboard,” said Joe.
Download the E-book to make the best estimating software decision that will improve your company for years to come.
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