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Improve Your Takeoff Estimate Speed with These Simple Tips

takeoff estimate

Improve your takeoff estimate speed while keeping accuracy in mind.

Commercial construction leaders understand how streamlining the estimating and takeoff process can help you gain more free time for taking on more clients quicker, with fewer errors and more accurate processes that reduce or eliminate costly risks common to the industry. (If you’re new to the takeoff estimate process, we recommend starting with ProEst’s “What Is a Construction Takeoff?” and “What Is a Quantity Takeoff in Construction?” and “How to Do a Construction Takeoff.”)

Go Digital

Digital takeoffs involve the same process as a manual takeoff, with the difference being that many of the more complex processes are automated. Digital takeoffs offer several advantages over manual takeoffs, including:

  • Increased accuracy
  • Decreased production time
  • Lower requirement for expertise
  • Integration into construction cost estimating software.

It’s Time for Cloud Estimating

A cloud-based takeoff estimate solution offers all the benefits of a digital solution, as well as the serious advantage of a “one-stop” solution that is always up to date (both in terms of the latest program version and your latest data) and accessible anywhere via smart connected devices. Also, don’t underestimate the benefit of spending less time in Excel! Granted, Excel was a great leap forward over manual processes. But (decentralized) digital still has significant drawbacks, including:

Decentralized teams: If your team is tracking projects on separate spreadsheets, you are not on the same page (literally). Staying up to date on tasks and addressing project setbacks in a timely manner are compounded when your data is split.

Inaccurate or outdated data: Mistakes happen in all companies, but the best companies have minimized the potential damage that mistakes can inflict by utilizing tools and processes like cloud estimating. This helps ensure that mistakes are caught—and corrected—as quickly and effectively as possible. You don’t have time to play the “Whose spreadsheet has an error?” game.

We realize that Excel (and Google Sheets, etc.) now comes in cloud form. However, simply moving a long-time desktop product to the cloud does not make it the best tool for the job. For example, there is still the matter of accidental data deletion and broken formulas. A broken formula may not become evident until it has sabotaged an entire project, and even when operating correctly, Excel forms and templates require extra time and attention to detail that most managers don’t have.

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ProEst Can Help

“ProEst is an all-inclusive construction estimating software program that provides some of the best project management and digital takeoff tools in the construction industry. It’s primarily designed for commercial construction businesses, but its range of digital takeoff tools, combined with its informative databases, make it a versatile construction estimating application.”

ProEst is a powerful, easy-to-use construction estimating platform that helps companies like yours quickly create accurate, competitive bids for your construction projects. With their construction bidding process, you can create estimates, perform digital blueprint takeoffs, store project drawings, and manage the bid day process using a single solution.

Components include:

  • CRM
  • Cost estimating
  • Takeoffs
  • Data integration
  • Reporting
  • Workflow process

Key benefits include:

  • An intuitive user interface that lowers the learning curve and makes it quick and easy to create detailed estimates
  • A single solution with one database for storing all your valuable estimate data so you’ll never have to search for a missing estimate or drawing file again
  • A standardized estimating process that increases efficiency, eliminates errors, and presents a consistent and professional company brand

In a January 2020 review, reported, “ProEst is a premier construction estimation application that renders estimate data through an interactive user interface for general contractors and subcontractors.” Check out ProEst’s case studies, YouTube channel, and review on Featured Customers. ProEst has a Better Business Bureau rating of A+, with zero customer complaints as of this writing.

Considering Free/Open Source Software?

First, consider that most (but not all) “free” construction estimating and takeoff software options actually follow the “freemium” model. That is, they earn revenue by offering a basic free version to entice users to download, with premium features available for a price. In their “Why you must also consider paid solutions” section, Software Advice states, “Free and open source estimating software is a great stepping stone for many small construction firms—especially those using software for the first time. But as job volume increases, paid software often becomes the better choice.” Reasons for this include:

  • You’ll get more functionality.
  • The software will be more usable.


For commercial construction companies to scale, you need to be at the forefront of modern technology to help you move faster through your processes while maintaining a high level of accuracy. ProEst’s features help you do just that.

About ProEst

Since 1976, ProEst has helped over 8,000 of the world’s most prominent construction companies streamline and improve their estimating processes. ProEst’s mission is to deliver outstanding value to each client they serve through their construction bid takeoff software. Their core values include integrity, dedication to excellence, and loyalty. ProEst practices their core values in their work, giving their clients an experience of trust and partnership that is unique in the business.

To learn more about how your commercial construction company can reduce takeoff time to estimate faster, with greater accuracy, reach out today and schedule a 1-on-1 walkthrough with one of our specialists!