5 Tech Questions to Ask About New Estimating Software

August 2, 2018

Whether you’re a concrete or flooring contractor, there are lots of tools and options in the takeoff and estimating software market. When it comes to evaluating and selecting a cost estimating tool, it pays to dig into your technical requirements before you take the next step.


Like any other major purchase for your construction business, you should approach selecting software with research and due diligence. No matter your trade, it’s important to double-check technical features and requirements when comparing different software programs.

5 Technical Questions to Ask

Here are five key questions to consider when listing your requirements for takeoff and estimating software from our eBook, Estimators Guide to Assessing and Picking the Right Software:


  1. What are the system requirements and dependencies? This means whether software is web-, server-, or desktop-based or cloud. You should also look at the number of users allowed and whether you can export/input and share data and whether the software has accounting integration.
  2. What are the software functions and capabilities? Consider whether it offers overlay for recognizing changes and addendums or if you can share and send plans. You may need the ability to pre-populate bid sheets and annotate.
  3. What kind of technical support does the system offer? You should weigh whether you want US-based or offshore support and 24-hour, business-day support. Also, if online or phone line is acceptable.
  4. Does the software company provide subject matter experts? Knowing the provider has construction expertise may mean the company is more attuned to your business needs.
  5. How are product updates and maintenance handled? Some companies will automatically update your software or require you to opt-in. You must determine whether you prefer scheduled maintenance or a less disruptive method for updates.

Double-Check Core Capabilities


There are lots of technical requirements to weigh when picking a new construction estimating tool. Contractors should always make sure any new software has the core capabilities as outlined by Software Advice in its 2018 FrontRunners Quadrant. They suggest any tool your purchase should include cost estimating, cost database, and proposal generator.


Want to learn more? For a step-by-step guide to the purchasing process, download our eBook, Estimators Guide to Assessing and Picking the Right Software, now.


Did you know On-Screen Takeoff and Quick Bid were named a FrontRunner by Software Advice? Request a demo now to learn how On-Screen Takeoff and Quick Bid can help you win the right work for your construction business.


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