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Use our step by step guide to learn the main functions of our 360 Estimator software, with examples and pictures.

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2

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Relax while watch our video lessons and learn how to create a Takeoff, Estimate, Proposal, Gantt Chart and Cost Report, using 360 Estimator.

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Construction Estimating How To Guide

The purpose of this lesson is to get you an overview of the 360 Estimator and show you how it can help grow your construction business.

360 Estimator is a simple but powerful construction estimating software that integrates with Craftsman Book Company’s cost books to give you the ability to add over 100 thousand cost items for any of your project needs. Using 360 Estimator you can manage your construction projects from the initial concept through to the end. 

1. Create project takeoff 

The phrase “takeoff” refers to the estimator taking each of the required materials off of the blueprint for a project. The central purpose of a construction takeoff is to provide a comprehensive list of all the essential materials to complete a project.

360 Estimator can help you eliminate manual plan takeoffs and drastically reduce the chance of miscalculating materials or missing items. You can import plans using industry-standard formats. You can quickly use 360 Estimator to measure square footage, perimeters, and volumes of simple or even complex areas.

2. Create estimates and send project proposals

Construction estimating is the process of anticipating the expense of building a physical structure. Every successful project starts with an accurate cost estimate. 

360 Estimator allows you to easily create an Estimate and send proposals to your customers using Craftsman Cost books. You can choose from 11 books with over 100.000 Cost Items.

Cost items are the basics of an estimate, representing the quantity of work that needs to be done. A cost item has a symbol, description, material costs, labor costs, and equipment costs for one unit. 

3. Manage your projects using a Gant Chart

A Gantt chart is a project management tool assisting in the planning and scheduling of projects. Project management timelines and tasks are converted into a horizontal bar chart, showing start and end dates, as well as dependencies, scheduling, and deadlines, including how much of the task is completed per stage and who is the task owner. This is useful to keep tasks on track when there is a large team and multiple stakeholders when the scope changes. 

360 Estimator automatically creates a Gantt Chart for your project and allows you to modify the start and end dates, dependencies, percentage completed, and task owner.  

4. Create cost reports

Cost reports are used in the post-contract phase of the project. Successful projects are delivered with the required quality standards, on time, and within budget. One of the most important cost control actions is submitting regular, monthly in general, up-to-date, and accurate cost reports.

360 Estimator assists you in the post-contract phase of the project to create regular, up-to-date, and accurate Cost Reports. The progress is recorded and automatically synchronized with the Gantt Chart.

5. Engage with your customers

360 Estimator allows you to Manage and build the relationship with your customers using our integrated Customer Relationship Management (CRM) module.


6. Take control of your projects using the Dashboard

360 Estimator allows you to customize your dashboard and always have access to any information about your projects, customers, and teams.

7. Use the Mobile app
You can download the Estimator AR app on your mobile phone from  or  and use it as an alternative to viewing your projects created in 360 Estimator or as a stand-alone app for simple projects. 

Thank you for watching this video and please go to 360estimator.com web page and create free trial account now!

In this lesson, I want to show you how to create an Estimate using 360 Estimator and Craftsman Book Company’s cost books.

An estimate is a forecast of the construction costs. An Estimate is prepared by breaking down the items of work of a project and determining the cost of each item.

1. Add a Project

  • First, select the Projects page
  • Then select the Proposals Folder
  • Using right-click choose Add project
  • Enter the name of the Project, for example, Standard foundation, and press Enter
  • then, press Enter to open the project

2. Add cost items in your  Estimate

360 Estimator has access to Craftsman Book Company’s cost books, a database with over 100,000 cost items for construction and installation works. You can search for items by name or symbol.

  • enter the keywords for your first cost item, for example, Excavation
  • choose the correct cost item, enter the quantity, for example, 10 Cubic Yards, and press Enter to add the cost item to your estimate

Cost items are the basics of an estimate, representing the quantity of work that needs to be done. A cost item consists of material, labor, and equipment prices.

  • enter the keywords for the second and any additional cost items you want to add to your estimate, for example, Concrete form
  • choose the correct cost item, enter the quantity for example 15, and press Enter to add the cost item to your estimate

If you want to search for a cost item in a specific catalog,

  • open the Items left panel and for example, Choose Standard items, Craftsman books, Construction, Residential division, Concrete and press Search
  • choose the correct item, for example, Footing and foundation concrete, enter the quantity, for example, 10 Cubic Yards, and press the Enter to add it to your estimate

3. When you want to Print an Estimate

  • from the top right corner, press Reports, choose Estimate and press Export  

4. Set the Area of your project in order to be able to apply the Area Modification Factor

Area modification factors are revised and published by Craftsman Book Company to account for relative changes in labor and material costs from area to area.

  • from the bottom left corner, press Settings, choose Properties, Location Settings for Craftsman Books
  • select country, for example, United States, select State, for example, Kentucky,  and select City, for example, Louisville and press Save

Relative changes in labor and material costs will be applied to the cost items that will be added further to the project.

5. Create a Work Breakdown Structure for your complex projects

A work breakdown structure (WBS)  defines all the things a project needs to accomplish, organized into multiple levels.

  • Go to the Projects page
  • Select the Proposals Folder and using the right-click menu, press Add project
  • Enter the name of the Project for example Apartment, 3 story
  • Select the project and using the right-click menu press Add Division
  • Enter the name of the Division for example “Substructure” and press Enter
  • Enter the name of the Estimate  for example  “Standard foundations” and press Enter to open the Estimate 

6. Use a Template to create a Work Breakdown Structure for your complex projects

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) recommends Uniformat II as a classification framework to provide a consistent reference for the description, economic analysis, and management of a structure during all phases of its life cycle. 

  • Go to the Projects page
  • Select the Proposals Folder
  • from the left panel, press Items chose Templates, and press the “+” in front of the Uniformat Template you want to use, for example, Building Elements

A new project will be added and you can start to modify it as needed. 

Thank you for watching this video and please go back to your 360 Estimator and create an Estimate for your project now.

 

In this lesson, I will be taking you through each step necessary to create a digital takeoff.

Quantity takeoff from drawings can be carried out by using the On-Screen Digital Takeoff.

The purpose of measuring is to establish the correct amount of work that needs to be carried out.

1. Load a blueprint from a PDF or a DWG format

  • select the cost item for which you want to calculate the quantity and, using the right-click menu, choose Quantity takeoff 
  • press Add Blueprint  and choose the blueprint in PDF, DWG, or JPG format from your computer

2. Set the scale

The scale is the relative size at which a drawing has been made.

  • position your drawing
  • in the top right corner, press Takeoff the Scale 
  • enter the length of the longest line from your drawing
  • draw the line using two points 
  • in the top right corner, you can verify and modify the Scale if it is needed 

3. Start a takeoff 

  • in the top left corner, press Areas 
  • on the blueprint draw the area using points for each corner
  • in the left panel, rename the parameter, for example, Bedroom 1, and verify the area calculated
  • choose the math signs you want to use in your formula for example times 8 inches divided by 12, to convert in feet, divided by 27, to convert in cubic yards
  • Press Save to close the quantity takeoff window and return to the estimate

The calculated quantity will be applied to the cost item you selected.

5. Print  the Estimate

  • from the top right corner, press Reports 
  • from the bottom left, press Setting 
  • choose Report tab, General section, and uncheck Display prices
  • choose: Project section and check: Show formula
  • choose the format of the Estimate XLSX or PDF and press Export 

Thank you for watching this video and please go back to your 360 Estimator and create a Digital Takeoff for your project now.

This lesson is an overview of how to modify prices for your project.

The point of a good price estimate is to ensure both reliability and accuracy. Reliability comes from properly taking into consideration fluctuating market conditions, seasonal and location factors, as well as other project conditions.

1. Modify prices for a cost item

  • select the project, division, or estimate for which you want to modify 
  • open the Estimates page
  • select the cost item for which you want to modify
  • modify the Price, Materials unit price, Labor unit price, or Equipment unit price, directly in the table

2. Modify soft costs

Soft costs are indirect costs that will normally be added to the direct costs. Generally, these are builder overhead and profit margin and are carried out on a percentage basis of your hard costs. 

  • from the bottom right, click on the Soft Costs 
  • Modify the percent directly in the table, for example, set Overhead and Profit to 8%.

If you want to add specific or special soft costs for a project, open the Items left panel, from the Soft Costs section, select Special soft costs,  press plus in front of the Soft Cost item you want to add.

3. Modify prices using percentages

You can use a set percent value to alter the prices for your either materials, labor, and equipment.  You can also modify the value of your entire project or you can set a final value for it 

  • select the project, division, or estimate for which you want to apply increases 
  • select the Estimates tab
  • select the line items for which you want to apply increases, use Ctrl + A to select all
  • using the right-click menu, choose Apply increases
  • Enter the percentage you want to apply for materials, labor, and equipment, for example increasing labor cost by 10%  which will apply to the grand total
  • another option is to  enter the final value for your Project, and a percentage will be calculated for materials, labor, and equipment 
  • press Save 

4. Create and use Price Collections

Price collections are a unique selection of prices for cost items. A price collection can be used to easily transfer prices from one project to another.

  • select the project for which you want to save the unit price of the cost items in a price collection
  • select the Estimates tab
  • select the line items for which you want to save prices or use Ctrl + A to select all
  • using the right-click menu press Save prices
  • Press + to add a new collection or choose one from the list and press Save

The Price collection will be used to update the price for the cost items that will be added further in this project or in other new projects. 

Thank you for watching this video and please go back to your 360 Estimator and modify Prices for your project now.

In this lesson, we’ll be going through how to create custom cost items.

A cost item is comprised of material, labor, and equipment prices. Cost items or cost lines are the basic parts of an estimate and represent quantities of various items of work that need to be done and purchased. A cost item has a symbol, description, material costs, labor costs, and equipment costs for one unit.

 

1. Modify an existing cost item

  • open the estimate where the cost item you want to modify is
  • select the cost item you want to modify
  • edit the Symbol, Name, Materials price, Labor price, or Equipment price, for example, you can modify the Name of the cost item, delete some details, and the labor unit price, 4 Dollars for each Cubic Yard

2. Create a new cost item

  • open the estimate where you want to create the cost item
  • select the line where you want to add, using right-click menu press Add and enter the name for your cost items, for example, Strip Foundation
  • if the cost item will not be found in the cost database, you can press Enter to add a new one
  • edit the quantity, unit measure, materials unit price, labor unit price, and equipment unit price  for the new cost item (For example 12 Cubic Yards, materials price 120 USD for a cubic Yard, labor price 40 Dollars for a Cubic Yard and Equipment price 120 Dollars for a Cubic Yard)

 

3. Save a custom cost item

  • select the cost item you want to save, for example, Strip Foundation
  • using the right-click menu, press Save 
  • choose or add a collection where you want to save the custom cost item, for example, Construction
  • choose or add a division where you want to save the custom cost item, for example, Concrete
  • press Save 

The new cost item will be saved in the Custom items collection and will be available for your next projects.

4. Create an Assembly

Construction costs are comprised of material, labor, and equipment prices and can be referenced at the unit or assembly level of detail.

  • select one or more cost items you want to save in an Assembly, for example, you can select all cost items from your estimate
  • using the right-click menu, press Save
  • Enter a symbol, Unit of measure, and a Name for your Assembly, for example, A01, Cubic Yards, Standard Foundation
  • choose or add a collection where you want to save the custom Assembly, for example, Construction
  • choose or add a division where you want to save the custom Assembly, for example, Concrete
  • press Save 

The new Assembly will be saved in the Custom items, Assemblies database and will be available for your next projects

Thank you for watching this video and please go back to your 360 Estimator and create a custom Cost Item for your project now.

Through this lesson, we want to make sure you will know How to configure a Gantt Chart.

Gantt chart is a project management tool assisting in the planning and scheduling of projects.

 1. Set the start date for your project

  • Select your project and open the Gantt Tab
  • from the top-right menu, choose Display, and check the level of details you want to see on your Gantt, for example, Days and Line items.
  • select the  bar from the Gantt that represents the main activity you want to move and, simply drag and drop, to move your Graphic bar to the new start date
  • repeat the operation for all your activities

2. Change the order of your activities 

You can create your Work Breakdown Structure by rearranging your activities in the order in which you will execute them.

  • from the left table, select the position cell in front of the activity you want to move and, using your mouse function drag and drop, change it’s position, for example move the activity number three at the beginning

3. Modify the time it takes to complete your activities

The time it takes to complete in days for your activities is calculated from the labor hours divided by the number of workers and hours spent on the job or project

  • If you want to modify the time-lapse calculated for your activities, select the left or right margin of the bar from the Gantt that represent the activity you want to modify and, using your mouse function drag and drop, chang the date on your Graphic
  • If you want to recalculate the time it takes to complete one of your activities, select the activity and using the right-click menu, and choose Calculate duration

4. Create dependencies for your activities

  • If you want to create a Finish to Start condition, select the finish point of the  activity you want to include in your critical paths and, using your mouse function, drag and drop, link it to the start point in front of the  activity which is conditioned
  • repeat the operation until you have your  conditions created on your Gantt

The critical path is the longest period of time in which the tasks of a project will be completed.

5. Use S-Curve

S-curve is a mathematical graph that illustrates the appropriate cumulative data for a project or task, in our case, the number of workers needed for your tasks

  • from the top-right menu, choose Display and check the Gantt and S Curve view
  • from the bottom left section, check the labor checkbox to see in real-time the number of workers needed for your tasks
  • move tasks on your Gantt chart until the number of workers is optimal

6. Print the Gantt Report

  • from the top-right menu, choose Export Gantt and open the pdf file with your Gantt chart

Thank you for watching this video and please go back to your 360 Estimator and configure a Gantt Chart for your project now.

In this lesson, we’ll be creating Cost reports 

We are now in the post-contract phase of the project. Successful projects are delivered with the required quality standards, on time, and within budget. One of the most important cost control actions is submitting regular, monthly in general, up-to-date, and accurate cost reports. 

 1. Create a Cost Report

In a cost report you can have three types of quantities: Completed, Canceled, or Added

  • select the project, division, or estimate for which you want to create a cost report, for example, Standard foundations
  • move on the Estimates Tab and from the top of the table, press plus  from the right of the Proposal Box
  • enter the name and the date of the Cost report, for example, Cost report 1, date January 31st, and press Save 
  • enter the quantities completed current 
  • repeat the operation until you finish your cost report
  • enter the quantities canceled current if there are any
  • add new items to your cost report if you have any, for example Concrete forms

2. Create the Final Cost Report

  • from the top of the table, press plus  from the right of the Proposal Box
  • enter the name and the date of the Cost report for example Final Cost Report, date February 29th,
  • check the Completed remaining quantities and press Save 

The Cost report is connected with your Gantt chart and if you move on your Gantt chart you can see the percent completed for each activity from your project

3. Print a Cost report  

  • from the top right corner, press Reports 
  • choose the Cost report or Summary of Cost Reports and press Export

Thank you for watching this video and please go back to your 360 Estimator and create a Cost report for your project now.

 

The purpose of this lesson is to show you how to export your projects. You can use the exported file to share your project with a partner, or Import a project received from a partner.

1. Export a project and send it to a partner

  • select the project, division, or estimate you want to export
  • using right-click, choose Export
  • choose the Estimate type, press Export, and save the file to your computer
  • from there you can attach the file to your email or utilize a ‘cloud-based storage sharing solution’.  

2. Import a project received from a partner

  • Select the folder where you want to import the Project
  • using right-click, choose Import
  • choose the Estimate type
  • Press Browse, choose the XLSX file you want to import, and press Open
  • Press Import 

3. Export a project for Microsoft Project Manager

  • select the project, division, or estimate you want to export
  • using the right-click, choose Export
  • choose the Microsoft Project Manager type and save the XLSX file on your computer

The XLSX file is ready to be imported in Microsoft Project Manager

In this lesson, you will be given the steps on how to manage your customers' accounts. A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool helps you to keep track of the records of all contacts and projects for all of your customers.

 
1. Add the customer details for your project
  • select the Estimates tab
  • locate the project 
  • then, from the bottom left corner, press Settings 
  • select the Partners Tab
  • Press Add  to complete the details about your Customer, for example, ACM Holding
  • enter your account details in the appropriate boxes, for example, Contact: Andy Thompson, email: andy@acm.com  and press Save 

You can find your customer in CRM and see the history of all of your projects and interactions with your customer.

2. Send your proposals and cost reports by email

  • select Estimates module
  • select your project
  • Press reports 
  • choose estimate report 
  • Press send by email 
  • choose a template for your email
  • Preview your attached report 
  • Press Send  

3. Keep a log of emails, phones, or onsite interactions related to your customer

  • select the CRM tab
  • select your customer
  • in the left panel, press Add Note 
  • Enter a note (for example, spoke with the Project Manager about the details of upcoming building phase 1) and press save.

4. Add a new project for an existing customer

  • from the main menu of the program choose the CRM page
  • in the left panel, select the folder where you want to add an account or use the right-click menu to add a new folder, for example, New Customers.
  • position the cursor in the accounts table and using the right-click menu choose Add account for example ACM Holding
  • enter your account details in the appropriate boxes and press Save, for example, Contact: Andy Thompson, email: andy@acm.com 
  • from the right panel, press + Project, enter the name of the project, for Example, Apartment 3 Story, press Save  and you will be redirected to Estimates, Projects page to continue to define your project

 

In this lesson, I will be showing you How to configure your Dashboard. The Dashboard helps you to get a 360 view of your projects.

The standard panels on your Dashboard are:

  • Planning - a calendar with your projects and cost reports
  • Projects stages - a funnel with your projects in different stages
  • User Actions - a summary of the activities of all the users
  • Estimates - a list of your projects and their values
  • Projects - a graphic with your projects and percent completed
  • Projects Map - a Google map with your Building sites 

All the information from your panels is linked to the Estimates module so you can see the details about your project simply by pressing one click.

1. Hide and view the panels on your dashboard

  • from the right menu bar, choose Settings: General Settings
  • open the Dashboard page and press Hide/Display  for the panels you want to see or hide on your Dashboard
  • press Move up and Move down to rearrange the panels on your Dashboard

2. Configure your panels

  • from the top right corner of your panel, press Settings 
  • configure your panel and press Save

 

In this video, you will learn how to configure users. You can configure users for your application depending on the number of subscriptions you purchased. For more details, vizit our price page 360estimator.com/estimating-pricing.

 

1. Add a new user

  • from the right-click menu choose Settings: Users
  • from the right-click menu, choose Add: User
  • complete the information boxes about the new user and press Save 

2. Configure an existing user


  • from the right-click menu, choose Settings: Users
  • select the user you want to configure
  • configure User details, User permissions and Subscriptions and press Save

In this lesson, I want to show you how to create an estimate using the simplified version of 360 Estimator for Mobile. 

You can download the Estimator AR app on your mobile phone from  or  and use it as an alternative to viewing your projects created in 360 Estimator or as a stand-alone app for simple projects.

 1. Add the Customer

Touch + at the bottom right corner, enter the customer's name, for example, John Smith, and touch Save.

2. Add the Project

In the projects section, touch +, enter the project name, for example, the Standard foundation, and touch Save 

3. Add Cost Items

You can search for the cost items by name or symbol. The 360 Estimator program has partnered with Craftsman Books, providing a database with over 100,000 cost items for construction and installation works from the Craftsman Book Company of America.

Touch + from the bottom right corner and enter a keyword, for example, Excavation. Choose the correct item from the list, enter the quantity, for example, 2 Cubic Yards, and touch Add.

Touch + on the bottom right of the screen again and enter the search criteria, for example, Concrete form. Choose the right item, enter the quantity, 15, and touch Add.

Touch + on the bottom right of the screen again and enter the search criteria, for example, Concrete footings  Choose the right item, enter the quantity, for example, 2 cubic yards, and touch Add.

4. Modify the cost items

If you want to modify the cost items, to account for the local market or seasonal availability, select the item you want to modify, press click, change the name, cost of materials, labor, equipment, or quantity, and touch Save.

5. Use On-site Quantity Takeoff

If you want to use On-site Quantity Takeoff select the item for which you want to modify the quantity, touch to open it, touch Takeoff from the right of the Quantity and use your camera or Augmented Reality gear to measure. Edit the formula as needed and touch Save.

6. Delete a cost Item

If you want to delete an item, click and drag the item to the left, and confirm the deletion.

7. Edit the project details

Touch + at the bottom right corner, press Settings, press Show more, change the project details, for example, set the Overhead and profit to 8%  and touch Close.

8. Send the proposal to your customer

The program allows you to send the proposal in PDF format. Touch PDF in the top right corner, choose Proposal and press Send Report.

Thank you for watching this video and please download the Estimator app on your mobile phone from  or 

and create a free trial account now.

 



Costruction Estimating Glossary

A Workflow is a sequence of tasks that describe how something goes from being undone to done.

Here is a proposed workflow in 360 Estimator that helps you to manage your construction projects from the initial concept through to the end. 

 

What type of commercial pricing do you offer?
Craftsman publishes annually 11 databases, which include estimating data for commercial and industrial construction.

How many individual items are in your pricelists?
Craftsman offers a range of cost databases to suit your needs, including:
• General construction – approx. 30,000 cost items
• Repair & remodeling – approx. 6,000 cost items
• Renovation & insurance repair – approx. 12,000 cost items
• Electrical – approx. 9,000 cost items
• Plumbing & HVAC – approx. 8,000 cost items
• Home improvement – approx. 10,000 cost items
• Earthwork & heavy equipment – approx. 3,000 cost items
• Heavy construction – approx. 20,000 cost items
• Concrete & masonry – approx. 15,000 cost items
• Painting – approx. 5,000 cost items
• Framing & finish carpentry – approx. 5,000 cost items

What type of pricing services do you offer? (i.e. unit pricing, time & materials, etc)
Craftsman Book Company (“Craftsman”) has been a publisher of construction cost estimating references since 1952. Licensed Craftsman data shows the time (typical manhours per unit for installation), material cost per unit (including waste and coverage loss) and installed cost, based on an hourly labor rate (including taxes and insurance) appropriate for the locality. Overhead and profit are necessarily a function of the contractor performing the work, not the task.


Describe how you develop your estimating guidelines?
Estimating (including cat-loss adjusting) is an art, not a science. Good estimates are custom made for a particular project and a single contractor through judgment, analysis, and experience. On many jobs, the range between high and low bid will be 30% or more. There's room for legitimate disagreement on what the correct costs are, even when complete plans and specifications are available, the date and site are established, and labor and material costs are identical for all bidders. No one cost fits all jobs. There are better estimates and worse estimates. All good estimates are based on careful consideration of what’s included and what’s excluded. Without that, any price is the right price. That’s why Craftsman data includes robust explanations – a short essay anyone can use to evaluate how conditions on a particular job will affect costs.


How do you develop pricing?
Prices come from the same sources all professional estimators use: contractors and subcontractors, material suppliers, material price services, analysis of plans, specifications, completed project costs, and both published and unpublished cost studies. In addition, Craftsman conducts nationwide mail, email and phone surveys and has the use of several major national estimating databases. Craftsman monitors prices for over 1,000 key construction materials in essentially all metropolitan areas in the US.

How do you verify pricing?
Prices are checked continually, both by Craftsman staff and by reports from the thousands of contractors who use Craftsman references when pricing construction and re-construction work.


How often do you update pricing?
Craftsman maintains a set of geographic modifiers for US zip codes and Canadian postal sortation areas. New modifiers are produced and distributed monthly, with other cost data adjustments distributed on a quarterly basis -- automatically on the Web.

Do you update pricing in a catastrophe, and if so how do you update prices?
Craftsman occasionally publishes regional (localized) editions which reflect experience of adjusters working in the communities affected by a catastrophe.

Does your pricing account for the amount items cost in particular geographic locations?
Yes. Geographic modification factors are revised and published monthly to account for relative changes in labor and material costs from area to area. Modification factors are available for essentially every US zip and more than 1,000 Canadian postal codes.

Are local prices surveyed on a regular basis? Do you call local contractors or is some other method utilized to determine local prices?
Yes. Craftsman receives, collects, processes and publishes thousands of construction material costs daily. The Craftsman support line receives over a hundred calls per week from contractors and construction professionals, many confirming prices Craftsman has published.

Do you consider feedback concerning inadequate pricing from area residents, contractors, company personnel in developing your guidelines? If so, how do you address this?
Yes. All inquiries are treated seriously. We research claims about inadequate or erroneous data and publish expanded or corrected information on the Web through the Craftsman Software Update (CSU) when appropriate.

Does increased demand for updated pricing result in increased frequency of pricing updates?
No. There has been no request for updating prices more often than quarterly.

Do you update pricing guidelines in reaction to local area items?
Yes. All pricing is based on local costs. As local costs change, we publish revisions.

How long does it take you to update pricing guidelines in reaction to discovering an item that is localized to a certain area?
Scheduled updates are published quarterly. Unscheduled updates can be published and distributed on the Web within 24 hours.

Does your software allow for minimum charges in all categories, for retail labor in all categories, for trip and/or preparation charges based on “pure labor” that can be adjusted to account for excessive drive or transportation times?
No. Driving times, trip, job preparation, supervision, mobilization, and demobilization costs (and all non-productive labor) are overhead costs that are properly considered separately from labor and material costs. Craftsman recommends minimum job charges for many trades and tasks. But labor and material cost estimates are based on typical installation rates and exclude non-productive time.

What type of data supports your pricing?
Craftsman is acknowledged as a leader in publishing backup data for estimates – offering an item by item breakdown of all components in each assembly – including typical waste and coverage factors.

Is the data readily available for access when needed to support your pricing?
Yes. Craftsman includes a summary of all the cost components side-by-side with most estimates


How do you monitor new products in the market place and how or when are they added to your program?
Craftsman publishes about 50,000 pages of construction cost estimating data annually. About 200 pages of new data are added each year. This information comes from the same sources all contractors, architects, and engineers use: product catalogs, trade press, manufacturer press releases, and reports from building material dealers. New products are generally added during annual revisions but can be added with any monthly update.


For more info vist: Crafstman Company website

The phrase “takeoff” refers to the estimator taking each of the required materials off of the blueprint for a project. The central purpose of a construction takeoff is to provide a comprehensive list of all the essential materials to complete a project.

360 Estimator can help you eliminate manual plan takeoffs and drastically reduce the chance on miscalculating materials or missing items. You can import plans using industry-standard formats. You can quickly use 360 Estimator to measure square footage, perimeters, and volumes of simple or even complex areas.

 

Construction estimating is the process of anticipating the expense of building a physical structure. Every successful project starts with an accurate cost estimate. If a contractor produces a very detailed estimate he will be able to:

  1. compete in a highly competitive field
  2. complete a project on time, to the specific quality, and within budget 
  3. stay in business

For most contractors Construction estimating is the most important marketing tool. A detailed estimate is not only used for bidding and competing against other contractors but is also a basic project management tool. A detailed estimate offer:

  1. the inițial project schedule
  2. information for procuring materials
  3. planing for required resources of labor, equipment, and finances
  4. a project control budget

A detailed construction estimate or bid estimate is the product of a process whereby the cost of a proposed construction project is predicted. This prediction is based on a complete set of drawings from which the quantity of work is measured, specifications defining the quality of work, a developed construction plan, and time required for construction.

Using 360 Estimator you can upload the complete set of drawings and measure the quantity of work, create estimates, and track the progress of your project using cost reports and a Gantt chart. 

 

 

A cost item is comprised of material, labor, and equipment prices.

360 Estimator integrates 11 databases from Craftsman, which include over 100.000 cost items for commercial and industrial construction.

Cost items are the basics of an estimate, representing the quantity of work that needs to be done. A cost item has a symbol, description, material costs, labor costs, and equipment costs for one unit. 

 

Construction costs are comprised of material, labor, and equipment prices and can be referenced at the unit or assembly level of detail.

360 Estimator allows you to create and save custom assemblies and use them in your estimates.

A work breakdown structure (WBS) defines all the things a project needs to accomplish, organized into multiple levels.

For example, according to ASTM Uniformat II Classification for Building Elements, level 1 WBS for building elements are:

  1. SUBSTRUCTURE 
  2. SHELL 
  3. INTERIORS
  4. SERVICES
  5. EQUIPMENT & FURNISHINGS
  6. SPECIAL CONSTRUCTION & DEMOLITION
  7. BUILDING SITEWORK

 360 Estimator includes four templates that help you to create a proper WBS for your projects.

  • Uniformat Building Elements
  • Uniformat Bridge Elements 
  • Uniformat Transportation Surface 
  • Uniformat Building Elements with Details

 

 

 

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) recommends Uniformat II as a classification framework to provide a consistent reference for the description, economic analysis, and management of a structure during all phases of their life cycle. This includes planning, programming, design, construction, operations, and disposal.

360 Estimator integrates three UNIFORMAT Templates that you can use to create the Work Breakdown Structure for your projects. You can also download the complete pdf format as published by NIST

 

Area modification factors are revised and published by Craftsman to account for relative changes in labor and material costs from area to area. Modification factors are available for essentially every US zip. 

360 Estimator allow you to set the area of your project and automatically apply changes in labor and material costs from area you selected.

Soft costs are indirect costs that will normally be added to the hard costs. Generally, these are builder overhead and profit margin and are carried out on a percentage basis of your hard costs.

A custom price collection is a bundle of resources' price (materials, labor, and equipment) used previously in one of your projects and saved, that you can reuse in other projects.

360 Estimator allow you to create multiple price collections and use them to update prices in your projects.

Cost reports are used in the post-contract phase of the project. Successful projects are delivered with the required quality standards, on time, and within budget. One of the most important cost control actions is submitting regular, monthly in general, up-to-date, and accurate cost reports.

A Gantt chart is a project management tool assisting in the planning and scheduling of projects. Project management timelines and tasks are converted into a horizontal bar chart, showing start and end dates, as well as dependencies, scheduling, and deadlines, including how much of the task is completed per stage and who is the task owner. This is useful to keep tasks on track when there is a large team and multiple stakeholders when the scope changes. 

360 Estimator automatically create a Gantt Chart for your project and allow you to modify start and end dates, dependencies, percentege completed and task owner.  

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In project management, an S-curve is a mathematical graph that illustrates the appropriate cumulative data for a project or task. This data can be the cost, or man-hours plotted against time.

360 Estimator allows you to view and print S-curve for your projects' cost, or man-hours plotted against time.

The scale is the relative size at which a drawing has been made.

Construction drawings are made to a reduced scale (smaller than the actual size). The scale of a particular floor plan, elevation, or detail is indicated on the sheet, either in the title block or beneath the drawing itself. A note such as SCALE: 1/4″ = 1′-0″, for example, identifies the drawing scale for the plan. The drawing scale will determine which scale the user of the plan will have to use to retrieve dimensional information.

 



Construction Estimating Video Lessons