Sage Estimating (formerly Sage Timberline Estimating) Software


 

Sage Estimating (formerly Timberline Estimating) is an extremely intuitive and easy to use solution. This software offers detailed as well as conceptual takeoff capabilities. It also offers several electronic takeoff solutions which speed up the estimate generation process even further. Available in two versions (Standard or Extended), the solution comes with a variety of sample databases. Or, if you’re interested in getting a jumpstart with your database efforts, Sage offers a variety of customizable, industry-specific, pre-built databases including RS Means.

Due to the software’s flexibility, it can suit your needs regardless of your company size. However, we find Sage Estimating is best suited for companies that run operations of at least $1 million due to its cost. Construction firms beyond this benchmark will find this solution to be suitable for their business and estimating needs.

 

Sage Estimating (formerly Sage Timberline Estimating) - Estimating
 
  • Sage Estimating (formerly Sage Timberline Estimating) - Estimating
    Estimating
  • Sage Estimating (formerly Sage Timberline Estimating) - Job Cost Inquiry
    Job Cost Inquiry
  • Sage Estimating (formerly Sage Timberline Estimating) - Project Management
    Project Management
  • Sage Estimating (formerly Sage Timberline Estimating) - Service Management
    Service Management
Supported Operating System(s):
Windows 8

5 Reviews of Sage Estimating (formerly Sage Timberline Estimating)

 

from AVI Roofing.com
Specialty: Roofing & siding
Size of portfolio: 11 to 20 users Portfolio size: 11 to 20 users

AVI Inc - Review

Ease-of-use

It has become a lot more user-friendly since 2009 and earlier, when I first started using it. I like the ease of use with the keyboard and not having to use the remote. I also like that you can have multiple windows open and the drill-down options. The toolbar across the top has helped a lot with the user-friendliness of the program.

Functionality

There are some minor glitches we run in to. I would like to be able to have more access for reports to modify and create. Some reports in the vendor section do not pull receivable information accurately or at all, and vice versa. Some reports do not allow you to copy or modify. Some of the auditing is too extensive, like trying to change a vendor or delete an item on a purchase order requires you to create a whole new purchase order, which then messes up our numbering system.

Product Quality

I think for the most part the functionality and organization are really good.

Customer Support

It is way too expensive for minimal support. We get more out of hiring an outside consultant or doing internet searches to resolve our problems.

Likes Best

I like that it has more options for reports, forms, and queries than QuickBooks. Also, the program links between different areas of accounting and production, like work orders to invoicing and purchase orders. It performs well with Job Costing as well. I also like the functionality and organization that Sage Contractor provides.

Likes Least

The customer support is too expensive for the limited support we are granted. We pay for an outside consultant as well, who assists us more with the program than the customer support we sometimes get. It is also very expensive to add users, especially as a smaller business that does a lot of volume.

Recommendations

Hire a consultant to help you in the beginning process, and hire an employee to do the technical sides of this to update parts, reports, forms, etc.

 

from Manchester Community College
Specialty: Government - state & local
Size of portfolio: 11 to 20 users Portfolio size: 11 to 20 users

Teaching Sage to the workforce

Ease-of-use

When built correctly, the assemblies are very intuitive and make the job of estimating very quick.

Functionality

Estimating allows me to customize and accurately represent the scope of the project through many avenues. Whether sorting by project phase location or other BS codes, the review of the estimate becomes easier to understand.

Product Quality

The look and feel of the product is wonderful. We were beta testers of the Win95 version, and the familiar appearance of the spreadsheet allows the users a degree of comfort that instills confidence during the learning curve and further through use.

Customer Support

The support team, in my opinion, couldn't be more dedicated to the customer and solving any and all problems I have encountered

Likes Best

Sage's Timberline Estimating allows more flexibility in all aspects of estimating. From building specific items to substituting items, working with smart assemblies, and modeling, there is no other system that I have used that lets me customize the materials, subcontractors, and crews the way Sage does. The support received from Sage is top-notch.

Likes Least

The upfront time in loading in and customizing the database consumes a lot of time. Once in place, the time savings are incredible!

Recommendations

Look over the available databases to see how well they fit your particular business. If one is not available, build your own!

 

from Millfield Construction Co
Specialty: General contractor
Size of portfolio: 2 to 5 users Portfolio size: 2 to 5 users

Sage Estimating Review

Ease-of-use

You cannot undo changes easily. It doesn't fill in fields automatically that it really should.

Functionality

We have to keep separate Excel sheets to track certain things.

Product Quality

I feel it was designed by people who didn't actually use the product how it was intended. Logical connections are overlooked.

Customer Support

Yearly support is very expensive. Even then, the support is lousy, and the knowledgebase is worthless

Likes Best

The software is okay, but it needs work.

Likes Least

It's not intuitive. I wish it was all in one instead of three different pieces to do job cost, estimating, and purchase orders.

Recommendations

Use it before committing if possible.

 

from Ledgerwood Associates

Ease-of-use

Ease-of-use

 
Functionality

Functionality

 
Product Quality

Product Quality

 
Customer Support

Customer Support

 

Why choose Timberline estimating over Excel or the Big Chief notepad?

1. Integration, Integration, Integration

a. Dynamic link to Onscreen takeoff tools (I can be in the estimate quantity field and jump to the plans, measure the quantity while color coding it using the mouse, and it inserts the quantity in the estimate).

b. Quotation/Procurement - one of the most important add-ons. Allows the user to create quote sheets from takeoff items, email them to vendors, negotiate prices, then choose to use that quote in the estimate budget or push it through to a purchase order or subcontract. Remarkably powerful integration tool, plus you develop a bid history library.

c. CAD - beyond onscreen takeoff (which is only an image of the drawing where you still measure quantities). CAD integration uses CAD item libraries to electronically feed CAD driven quantities from the drawings (but you still have to "estimate" the work to be performed). CAD primarily provides the material components and quantities.

d. Scheduling Integration - the ability to generate a text file recap of the estimate sorted by a schedule activity, or export the recap to a Microsoft Project Schedule native file format, or to create a Primavera native file format. NOTE - it is not a scheduling program; it is a utility to convert the estimate to specific data file format used by specific scheduling software products.

2. Reduction in errors.

a. Database formulas work every time and warn you when something is missing. Excel can break formula links, fields, worksheet links, and references and become too complex to manage and generate a wrong calculation with no warning.

b. Database estimates can be sorted in almost unlimited ways using "WBS codes" (work breakdown structures). This is a fancy name for tagging an item with a sortable field such as material class, building number, floor number, alternate, and then sorting the estimate by those tags in a multiple level sequence - on the fly. Very important with so many cuts and adds taking place in today's estimating processes. It also quickly generates field-oriented docs (bill of materials; by floor, by area, etc.), Budgets - sort by job cost summary instantly, etc.

c. Cuts and Adds are a given in today's fast paced estimate environment, recalling a scope section and revising it repeatedly is a reality. This is the most common cause of estimating errors when bidding. Having an audit trail of changes and to quickly make a revision to all components by answering simple questions is very powerful (see smart assemblies and Modeling as well).

d. Parametric estimates - increase the production of an estimator without increased rework or errors. Answer a set of parametric scope questions and the assembly generates all detail components for the estimator. Eliminates errors, reduces rework, ends the "takeoff for a bid - then takeoff again to build it" issue.

3. Database standards

a. A standard item library for everyone in the company to use creating ease of assimilating new estimators, improving cross training of roles, having common logic that can be reviewed easily to see how the result was generated. How many times has an excel estimate template morphed into multiple complicated versions within a company? Not with a database central price book and takeoff system.

b. Flexibility - allows the estimating "artist" to be flexible with their style of results. The assemblies will allow scope questions to be used differently by each estimator (one wants unit price, another wants man-hours, another wants total Square Footage). They can get all of that with a single common system setup.

c. Pricing - many cost pricing service products integrate and can be combined with a company's own in-house price components. Run into that goofy system you have no idea what it costs - look it up in the pricing service system (and by regional pricing in the market). Have your own factors - apply them to the pricing.

There are many other reasons to consider a database driven integrated estimating system. The above are just a few that show why excel or paper are outdated for today's fast paced estimating demands. It is not just the takeoff - it is all the other integration of "clerical / admin" grunt work stuff that an integrated solution improves within an organization.

Four stars - there is no PERFECT system... but no others come close to this overall solution.

 

from Commercial Contractor

Ease-of-use

Ease-of-use

 
Functionality

Functionality

 
Product Quality

Product Quality

 
Customer Support

Customer Support

 

I have been estimating commercial construction projects for the past 15 years.

If you are on the fence with estimating software, look no further than Timberline. I have tried them all and none of them are as fast and refined as Timberline. Other companies put on a good sales show but the application doesn't measure up. We actually spent about $15k on a company's software licenses, and after using it we found it to be slow and klunky.

How good is Sage Timberline Estimating? Well, we walked away from $15k to use Timberline. Yeah, it's that good.

 
 
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