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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just found your site and wow, what a great resource! I can't post the link yet so look for my introduction in another thread.

We are at the point where I need help with sales to keep everyone busy. I'm spending at least 50% of my time doing sales and we are only doing about 70% of what I think we can do. I'm spending the rest of my time running the business and just don't have the bandwidth to increase sales to where they need to be. So I'm looking to hire a sales person and give my project manager the ability to bid jobs.

The biggest hurtle I have right now is replicating my bidding process so others can do it. We are a general remodeler/handyman/make-ready company. We get a HUGE variety of projects from a variety of types of customers. My current process depends highly on my opinion of how long each task will take and what is reasonable for the customer. I've created a spreadsheet that helps me add up and calculate the rates for each task but I find that most bids I tweak the spreadsheet a little more or add another feature to it. Because I don't have firm guidelines to how I bid the job I'm really struggling with how to tell my PM how to bid jobs.


I've heard of software packages that can be used to create bids but I haven't done any research into these yet. What process do you use for calculating bids?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
2010 National Repair & Remodeling Estimator

I stopped by Borders bookstore on the way home to see if they had any help. I found two books, this one with a "National Estimator" software CD included. Anyone have experience using this one? For the 15 minutes I scanned through it, it seems pretty comprehensive to what we do. One question will be if the software is any good, I'm going to look for reviews and feedback online before I open the CD packaging.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I've just read about 15 pages of posts from 2007-2010. Seems like most of the discussion is several years old. I'm curious what the 2007 discussion group are using now.
 

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The Estimator software that comes with that book is essentially an excel spreadsheet, it requires flipping through the book in order to find appropriate activities. At least that's what I recall, its been a few years since I have used it.
 

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There are a lot of packages out there, it depends on how large your company is, and how much you are willing to spend. If you're a smaller company the book format may be a good starting point, I just felt like it was very cumbersome at the time. One option I just saw earlier this morning is through HD, they have some type of online estimating software available for professionals. The screenshots looked decent, and it was free but I can't speak for how well it actually functions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks aghdonmc, I thought that may be what it is. I already have an spreadsheet I created so I don't think that would do much good.
 
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