Likelihood to Recommend
If you are considering purchasing this (very expensive) software, there is a 100% chance you are doing so because you have been awarded a Government contract that dictates you use 4Clicks Project Estimator. There are plenty of easier to use estimating packages out in the world, but you can't use any of them if you have a contract that requires 4Clicks.
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It's absolutely well suited to anyone needing accurate piping takeoff and laboring estimates, with great reporting and up to date pricing. I love that I didn't need to spend time trying to update the price logs. It's easy to learn, and works well in a large or small environment, and lends itself to more than just estimating, but becomes a good project management tool as well. Fantastic software.
Read full review Pros The estimates it produces are simple and easy to follow. The formatting is good. The tech support provided is very attentive. Read full review FastPIPE was very fast to learn, very straight forward and user-friendly. It's easy to use and teach new interns and project engineers how to quickly takeoff sections to backup change orders or assist in heavy bid load. It's fantastic at keeping up to date on price changes. I'd get updates often, and they were usually within 2-3% of our discount prices with local vendors. In the few instances it wasn't, FastPIPE was very easy to adjust or factor for project costs. Is great at being able to pull up reports and graphs and track different materials and labor costs for factoring. We bid on a lot of high rise residential buildings, so we do takeoff by floor. It would give detailed reports per page as opposed to just a lump sum. Very detailed so it was easy to adjust per our project approach. Read full review Cons The software feels 20 years old. It has not kept up with modern times, and practically functions like an old DOS program. Clunky interface, arcane commands. Even their training info focuses on hotkeys like this is 1995. Even though I am of an age to remember computers in 1995, the younger generations of managers/estimators are not. It is time to bring the software into the new century! Read full review It was a trick or two learning how to upload prints correctly, I think that interface could be a bit easier, but it's already better than most of the competition. Might be nice to have easier labor factoring, in case we want to pre-load our own instead of MCA time factors for piping labor It would auto update upon opening occasionally. It's fairly fast, but I prefer to OK that in case I just need to come up with something quickly and don't want to wait. Read full review Alternatives Considered WinEst
uses much the same database (RS Means/Gordion type) and has a similar interface. It is a bit cheaper.
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I've used the quote soft piping takeoff as well, and it's just not as easy to use or update. Basic methodology and interaface is similar, but it's more 'clunky' to use, is harder to keep updated and to upload PDF's for takeoff, and it's just not as streamlined or user friendly. Akin to comparing driving a truck to a sports car. The Fast Pipe is really smooth and easy to function in.
Read full review Return on Investment As stated before, if you are buying this software, it is because you have a contract forcing you to. While it does work, it is clunky, awkward, and very expensive. The price of the software and databases has always been high, but with the fairly recent acquisition of 4Clicks by Gordion (who also bought RS Means for their databases), there is literally no competition. Prices will continue to be very high, with no check on how high they can go. Again, can't fault 4Clicks tech support, as I think it is the best in the industry. They know their product and they respond to issues immediately. Considering what we spend a year for this product, however, you would expect nothing less. Read full review Best impact is time saved. It's so much faster to do bid takeoff and hit the ground running Being able to 'draw in' on design-build and being able to print my takeoff has been helpful when turning the job over so the field install understands the approach taken to get the job. Ease of use and learning has made it much more cost effective to bring new people up to speed. Read full review ScreenShots