In-Eight, The Final Frontier
October 08, 2019
In-Eight, The Final Frontier
Score 10 out of 10
Overall Satisfaction with InEight
We use the software as our primary estimating tool to procure work for our company. There is still one user with our firm who uses excel spreadsheets to estimate projects. The In-Eight program has helped our firm to bid more work which has given the company more opportunities. When I started with the company four years ago they were biding just over 100 million dollars in our market sector. That number has steadily increased over the past four years. This year we have bid almost 300 million in contracts, I don't think we would have achieved this without In-Eight.
- Ease of tracking cost throughout the estimate - The software enables the user to quickly pull up reports and verify, crew hours, equipment hours and the total cost of these items. We can look at our labor and equipment budget on a project in a matter of seconds.
- Pay item and Proposal Screen columns - This enables the user to quickly look at the overall estimate from a cost and margin standpoint. There are a lot of features to choose from in the columns which give the user choices to share in a group setting when reviewing the final bid proposal. some key elements that we like to use are: Total Cost, Margin, Forecast Qty, Subtotal Amount, Subtotal Description, Lock Price, and Rounding Precision.
- PBS Screen - This screen is a great resource for quick snapshots at direct and indirect costs on a project. We also use subcontractor and vendor status frequently.
- Job Properties - This is ultimately one of the best features in the software, it lays the groundwork for each project and gives any user the background for the project.
- It is hard for someone who does not use the software to understand. I have found over the years that if you do not use In-Eight on a daily basis it is very confusing to show a non-user what is going on.
- It takes a long time for someone to be proficient in the software, I have a college graduate from USC who has a high learning capability and he struggles with it.
- Understanding the information on the screens, a lot of people have a hard time digesting the information on most of the pages.
The program exceeded my expectations when I first came over to Orion Construction. The company was using excel spreadsheets for their estimating needs and although it was working for them, I knew moving forward the In-Eight software could prove more useful. We have been able to bid larger and more complex projects using the software.
I was proficient in using the software before I moved over to Orion four years ago, once the program was set up there has not been a huge need for support. getting the software set up and continuing to install updates have been easy with your customer support. There is not a lot more for me to offer.
This has been a challenge, only I and two other peers are using the software, however, we have five individuals in management reviewing bids in the In-Eight program. So two of the five managers have a hard time digesting the information in the estimating software. My advice would be if you are going to use software for estimating, make sure everyone who will be looking at the software in your firm is trained in some way shape or form.
The In Eight software is best suited for large business models that require a lot of information at your fingertips. The program enables larger firms to adequately bid complex projects that require multiple estimators working in the estimate at the same time. The software would be less suited for smaller firms that can put an estimate together in a relatively short period of time by just using an excel spreadsheet. My advice would be that if your company is going to grow above $20 million per year in gross revenue, you should be looking at using some type of estimating program.