Timberline Estimating keeps builder from making mistakes
Edwards Constructions (NSW) Pty Ltd, based in Batemans Bay in New South Wales, Australia, did all its estimating manually, but as it handled increasingly larger jobs, company officials knew they needed help.
“I was doing estimates for jobs up to $8 million manually, and I knew we had to do something,” says John Dubbelaar, director of Edwards Constructions.
Dubbelaar went to a tradeshow in Sydney, where he got a demonstration of Timberline’s Estimating Software, and he was sold on it from the start. After using Timberline for several years with dramatic results, Edwards Constructions added Timberline’s Accounting.
Using Timberline has greatly sped up the estimating process for Edwards Constructions. “I have my database set up in such a way that I could easily do a takeoff on the room you’re sitting in now and have an accurate number sitting on my screen in a matter of seconds,” Dubbelaar says.
“The great thing about the estimating software is that it gives you the flexibility to set up the database in any way that you want. This allows takeoffs to be done in the way that suits your business and the estimates produced are in the format that you or your client requires.”
Even more important, the software has made the estimates more accurate, both by eliminating math errors and because the database acts as a checklist to prevent oversight.
“The biggest problem in estimating is when you miss something. This software, if you set it up properly, enables you to put in very accurate tenders,” Dubbelaar says.
Edwards Constructions has also seen its accounting processes speed up since adopting Timberline. Previously, the contractor had two people working on accounts virtually full-time. Since starting to use Timberline accounting software, Edwards Constructions has been able to cut back to a single person.
“The only thing we can put our finger on is Timberline software – it’s made the whole process simpler, and that’s where we’re saving our time,” Dubbelaar says.
Integration cuts redundancies
With Timberline’s integrated modules, it’s no longer necessary to re-key data from one accounting function to another, saving time and eliminating errors. “I like that I can do everything I want to do in accounting in the one package,” Dubbelaar says.
With Edwards Constructions former accounting tools, bookkeepers had to use Microsoft Excel and Access to manipulate the data to produce the necessary reports. Each step in the process tacked on additional time. That’s no longer an issue because Timberline does everything Edwards Constructions needs it to.
“The best thing about Timberline is you can do almost everything within the package itself and you don’t have to export your data to other programs to manipulate it. If the report does not exist in Timberline, I use a Timberline consultant to create the report,” Dubbelaar says.