Likelihood to Recommend
Well Suited: Construction cost estimates for new larger projects where the construction will start within the next 6-9 months. Budgetary estimates for future buildings through its square foot models. Not Well Suited: Not accurate enough on small projects where labor, travel to sites, and OH&P are a higher percentage of unit costs than on larger projects where these costs are spread out across more units.
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Quotesoft again is very well suited to any estimating department. I recommend a large screen monitor, but it's far more convenient than the old quick pen table or other methods. It's been great for jobs post mortem as well, we'll go back over as builds and make sure we captured and adjust estimates or change orders. It's also great for illustrating changes, and having all be very accurate.
Read full review Pros CostWorks is very good at generating quick and valid estimates for standardized facilities such as office buildings, schools, etc. It allows you to validate other cost estimates at the UniFormat level when doing an estimate validation. CostWorks' database of detailed line-items is a very resourceful asset when it comes to finding a very specific line-item. Sometimes, when using Success or MII, I will have CostWorks open on the other screen so I can find an item that the other softwares just don't have and build it into the other software from the CostWorks entry. CostWorks does a very good job of generating reports that are both well-developed and have enough detail at the summary level to be able to sit with a client or a project manager and have them follow along and understand without being overwhelmed with detail and numbers. Read full review Once you're over the learning curve, it's fantastic at getting accurate material takeoff. Because one is working off the real PDF prints of the project, it's very easy to get a good material list and takeoff. Excellent for giving options of transitions and allowing the user to account for the actual 3rd dimension of the project by being able to click and add the sections needed to transition between floors. The speed in which the user is able to takeoff is so much faster than traditional methods, and more accurate and easier to use than the other options on the market. Prints out great reports showing materials and hours, and lets you color code the systems while estimating so you know you aren't duplicating efforts. Very flexible as far as how it adjusts for your desired estimate. You can identify per floor, side of the building, system, etc. Allows for fast on the fly adjustments of sizes, materials and types of transitions with ductwork. Read full review Cons small project costs where labor is a bigger portion than materials on cost markup factors on governmental projects Read full review I'd prefer an 'all in one' as opposed to modules. I believe it's offered in that fashion but it was a touch more expensive. I was able to negotiate a footage takeoff tool for piping, to make it easier and more economical to our specific use, which is 95% dry side hvac estimating. Would be great if it could be preloaded with Smacna or MCA factors for labor, and also would be great if there was a faster way to update material costs. You do need to stay on top of your material factors and make adjustments per the price of steel and other consumables. The industry has been stable lately, but if for some reason you were lax in updating labor and material factors, you could be off on the estimate. That's true of ANY software or even standard old school estimating approach. It does require a dongle and a per seat license. The one drawback I don't care for, in a small company with tight cash flow, I do have estimators sharing the seat and scheduling takeoff around each other. Pretty standard though. Read full review Support Rating
I've never had the need to discuss CostWorks with a vendor.
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CostWorks is a unique software for estimating as compared to the other softwares I have listed above. PACES is mostly used for federal modeling and really cannot be compared to Costworks. It has its own developed modeling database and has its own quirkiness and issues. MII has been developed for the USACE and utilized a user-developed folder structure and RS Means Database. I use CostWorks along side this software to find line-items that are not in the MII RS Means Database. Success has been developed for NAVFAC and again, utilizes a user-developed folder structure and RS Means Database. When I use this software, I ALWAYS have CostWorks open on the other screen as Success' RS Means database is extremely lacking when it comes to the number of detail line-items. Timberline is by SAGE and I use it mostly for DOS and FAA work. Of the 3 RS Means Database softwares, this one has the most detailed database for reference, however, there are times when I do have to look up an item that Timberline does not have and the first software I open is CostWorks.
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We were looking at this, as well as quick pen, and other industry standard programs like Wendes. QuoteSoft was far more versatile, user friendly and has proven to be the right choice. No specific equipment outside of a bigger monitor, ease of use, and tech support as well as the online training aspect was fantastic. Felt well supported while we rolled it out.
Read full review Return on Investment I don't really see any "negative" impacts on my business or my ROI by purchasing CostWorks. It's a valuable tool that we use, however, some of my colleagues do not use it or use it very infrequently. I find it well worth the cost even though we don't develop complete estimates in CostWorks due to client dictated softwares. It has provided very quickly-built estimating models that let our team and project managers know that the RFP or the task that they are contemplating bidding on or starting to work on is actually feasible to construction given the budget and directive. Read full review First positive impact is time saved. We're able with our small team to estimate..ACCURATELY far more projects, thus winning more projects. Accuracy once we had our factors programmed is fantastic. It's tightened up our material and labor hours and made us more competitive Definitely has had a great return on investment. Helping to land more projects out of the sheer amount of available time to bid more, as well as being more confident in material costs. Read full review