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by Forrest Burnson,
Market Research Associate
Last Updated: April 15, 2016

Here's what we'll cover:

What Is Concrete Cost Estimating Software?
Common Features of Concrete Cost Estimating Software
Evaluating Concrete Cost Estimating Software

What Is Concrete Cost Estimating Software?

Concrete estimating software helps contractors calculate material and labor costs for concrete and masonry projects. Top-rated systems will feature pre-built assemblies for concrete walls, footings and slabs and will help measure quantities of specific materials like re-bar, J-Bolts, and gravel.

In this guide, we will cover the most common features for software in this category, as well as other important considerations. 

Common Features of Concrete Cost Estimating Software

Because concrete and masonry work is a visual niche that requires detailed plans for an accurate estimate, cost estimating software for concrete or masonry contractors will need a graphical element that makes the process as easy as possible. This might include some or all of the following features:

Consider the following features of concrete cost estimating software:

Point-and-click concrete calculator A point-and-click calculator should indicate square footage, linear lengths, angles and pitch, accounting for overlays and unknown pitches or elevations and automatically producing the estimate for concrete requirements.
Concrete material & labor costs A solution dedicated to this sub-specialty will use that data to provide an accurate estimate raw material and labor costs, ensuring an accurate estimate. This will also likely integrate directly into ordering and project scheduling systems in a complete system that includes accounting and project management capabilities.
Document scanning & recognition In moving to a paperless estimating system, you may want to scan paper plans and import them into the software. A top solution will recognize standard features and make it easy to convert a paper blueprint into an electronic one.

Evaluating Concrete Cost Estimating Software

A good concrete estimate starts with a complete understanding of the scope of work, followed by a good take-off process that includes an understanding of resource costs, and well-identified overhead and profit rates. Many concrete estimating programs can stand alone as construction estimating software, but some companies may wish to combine it with construction accounting and job costing software, project management, document management, or customer relationship management software.

When selecting a concrete cost estimating program, ask the following questions:

  • Do you need additional accounting, project management, or other capabilities, or is a simple cost-estimating solution sufficient?
  • How well does the software integrate with any existing accounting, CRM, ordering, or other systems?
  • Do you have a lot of paper blueprints you’ll want to make paperless?

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