Do you think about marketing your building firm better – but don’t know where to start? Do you want to undertake larger, more profitable work? Do you want a steady stream of decent business? Do you want to attract the best people to work for your company? If the answer is yes, then read our…Read More >>
It’s very easy to write January off when the weather lets you down, customers too - and the odd subbie. It’s dark, wet and there’s no money around… But all is not lost, far from it – the quieter period presents a great opportunity to review your business and decide how to take it forward. So we’ve listed here 10 goals to construction success in 2017 to set you on your way.
|Review your business direction - Starting with the biggie! What projects do you want and like to take on. Consider the 80/20 rule – could you concentrate on the 20 percent of the work that generates 80 percent of your revenue? And say no to the less profitable work? Do you want to diversify? What about Design & Build ? Walking is a good activity for clearing your mind and thinking afresh. Yes even builders can take an afternoon walk! Then break down your big ideas into daily, weekly or monthly actionable goals that you can measure.|
|Improve your bottom line - This usually involves 1) Raising your rates 2) Doing more work 3) Reducing your expenses. Look at the figures for last year and see how you could trim some overheads. Did your profit margins drop unnecessarily? Do you keep reducing your profit margin because of oversights? Find the leaks in your bucket.|
|Stop being busy and be more productive - Busy isn’t necessarily productive. ‘What’s the point of spending your days climbing a mountain, only to realise at the end of this new year, you’ve climbed the wrong one?’ (Quote courtesy of Robin Sharma, leadership expert). Do you enter the same data into multiple documents? Put systems in place that will streamline various processes.|
|Learn to delegate - Have a good long look at your role. Do you really have to do it all? Perhaps it’s time to stop being pulled in different directions and concentrate on the bigger issues. Make a list identifying the things that someone else could do. Estimating? Speaking to suppliers? Booking subbies?|
|Review your approach to health and safety - How confident are you that you have a handle on health and safety? Are your employees and the public properly protected? Do you know what the HSE expect from you – have you properly sussed out CDM 2015? How about putting some time in the diary to gen up on it, do an online health and safety course and get others onto it as well.|
|Review your customer service - Remember the customers pay the bills. If you want good reviews, if you want them to recommend you then make sure they stay happy. A single A4 sheet with your expectations of your employees and subbies will make sure everyone knows the policy. What about giving customers the opportunity to feedback at the end of a job – you could come up with a short questionnaire? At least make sure to ask them to give you a review.|
|Research cloud computing - If you’re not already using Dropbox, Google Drive, One Drive or another cloud storage application, then consider the benefits they could bring you. Saving and accessing files such as estimates in the cloud are really easy, and using cloud over physical file storage can save money as well. And of course you can be anywhere and still access your files remotely. But possibly most important of all is backing up - a must if you don’t want to lose something important following a systems failure or malfunction.|
|Promote your business better - It needn’t be anything grand. What about updating your website (you have got one haven’t you?)? How out of date are the projects on there? What about a Facebook page? Perhaps it’s time for new livery for the vehicles, new polo shirts, some better signs? Sponsor a team or event. Whatever, put together a list, add some time frames and make them happen. And why not book in a bit of marketing training on this – some short courses are available to do from home or office.|
|Become a tiny little bit of a geek - You don’t have to know your Bytes from your RAM but technology really will help you work more effectively, which means faster computers and clever software. Make a point of keeping up with new and changing technology that would impact you directly. Don’t just think about power drills and the latest plasterboard. What IT could you invest in to make your business run more smoothly?|
|Commit to new learning - Your business has to stay safe and compliant. Put some remote online health and safety training on the calendar. And why not think about learning a new skill. Find out about software for designing your own extensions and loft conversions for instance.|
We hope our 10 goals to construction success in 2017 proves helpful. If you would like any more advice on streamlining your processes, tightening up on admin and improving your profit margins, give one of the team here at HBXL a call on 0117 916 7898. Our suite of software is aimed exclusively at the builder and developer and was founded by a builder who knows only too well about the pressures of running a successful business. Have a great 2017!
EstimatorXpress 2017 Enterprise edition provides a range of essential collaboration tools for estimating departments. The powerful Manager & Collaborator feature set, synchronises company “settings” to ensure everyone in the team is using latest Price Books, Specifications, Quote templates, Custom Workbooks (Estimating calculators) and more…It also allows estimators to save their work to either Server or the Cloud from where other team members can locate an estimate and collaborate on it before saving it back to the same location.
EstimatorXpress 2017 Enterprise edition comes with smart Manager/Collaborator tools.
The “Manager” licence synchronises settings with the “Collaborator” licences to ensure all estimators are working with the same data:
“Collaborators” save their estimates to the Cloud or Server so that they are backed up and secure. Furthermore other team members can be invited to contribute to the estimate. Don’t worry, if an estimator has the file already open, another can’t open it, which avoids the unnecessary hassle of version control.
This easy accessibility to estimates, simplifies a managers difficulties with holidays and time off as jobs can easily be picked up by anyone in the team.
The primary computer; the “Manager” is £1,699+VAT for EstimatorXpress 2017 Enterprise edition.
For each of the “collaborators” you will need an EstimatorXpress 2017 Enterprise LIVE additional licence who will be working on different computers. These are priced £349+VAT each.
And finally there is a small monthly subscription fee of £9.99+VAT per user/per month.
Do call us to discuss your options on 0117 9167898 and we can best advise on the package you need.
|Software features & types of work you can estimate||Enterprise Edition|
|£1,699+ LIVE Additional user licences @ £349 & £9.99+VAT per month|
|Apartments & Flats||•|
|Renovations (internal & external)||•|
|Maintenance & Alterations||•|
|Groundworks (foundations, footings, slabs, paving, driveways)||•|
|Walling (internal & external inc brick & block, timber frame, partition, stone, rendered)||•|
|Roofing inc dormers and roof windows||•|
|Windows & doors, (internal & external), Conservatories||•|
|Basic domestic electrics||•|
|Painting & decorating||•|
|Kitchens and bathrooms||•|
|Basic domestic plumbing & heating||•|
|Advanced plumbing & heating||•|
|New Build Basements & Retaining Walls||•|
|SIPS & ICF Walls||•|
|Creates professional quotes, covering letters and t&c’s||•|
|Automatic production of 80+ professional reports (cost reports & tasklists, materials order schedules, cashflow and profit analysis)||•|
|Live material price link to Jewson, Travis Perkins, Graham, Keyline, TradePoint and more||•|
|Job Management, Gantt charts and labour schedules||•|
|Variations and amendments tools||•|
|Import & export into and out of MS Excel and Word||•|
|My Projects to combine& manage multiple jobs||•|
|PowerPack Advanced tool to create own EstimatorXpress estimating calculators||•|
|Stage Payments Generation Tool||•|
|Invoice Generation Tools||•|
If you want to know more about how the server/cloud connection and manager collaboration features can help your business give us a call on 0117 9167898 and we can talk you through the advantages specific to you and your company.
Store, share and locate all your estimate files easily and securely in the Cloud or Server. All the advantages of working on your estimates offline on your desktop, combined with the benefits of multi-device, multi-location and collaboration features of cloud estimation software. No version conflicts! Empower your business to get organised.
The latest update to EstimatorXpress 2017, includes tools to ensure estimates are always safe and secured to the back-up system of choice; either in the Cloud or Server. Combine this with the brand new EstimatorXpress 2017 LIVE additional licence and the real power is unleashed!
Smaller building companies will appreciate being able to save to Cloud from one device, and then continue working on a second device (which is running an EstimatorXpress LIVE additional licence) before saving back to Cloud.
Medium sized building companies will profit from the ability to save estimates to either their Server or Cloud from where other team members can locate an estimate and collaborate on it.
And for larger firms with bigger estimating teams, we’re proud to introduce the all new EstimatorXpress Enterprise edition and its powerful Manager & Collaborator feature set, which synchronises the company “settings” to ensure everyone in the team is using latest Price Books, Specifications, Quote templates, Custom Workbooks (Estimating calculators) and more…
Now you have the power. All versions of EstimatorXpress 2017 onwards can now save your estimates to a Cloud Drive of your choice (such as Dropbox, Google Drive or One Drive).
Well now you can! All versions of EstimatorXpress 2017 onwards can now save estimates to a server.
Totally doable! Once saved to cloud or USB drive, if you’re running EstimatorXpress 2017 LIVE additional licence on a secondary device you can access your estimate, continue working on it and save it back to the same location without the hassle.
Now possible – thanks to some nifty work by our development team. Once estimates are saved to the Cloud Drive or Server, if your colleague is running EstimatorXpress 2017 LIVE additional licence on their machine, they can access the estimate, continue working on it, then save it back to the same location ready for you to review it. And don’t worry, if either of you have the file already open, you can’t both open it, which avoids the unnecessary hassle of version control.
Our developers have got this nailed too! Enter EstimatorXpress 2017 Enterprise edition with smart Manager/Collaborator tools. To make management of your whole team even easier, you can now synchronise settings between different versions of EstimatorXpress. Ensure everyone is working with the same:
Every member of the team (“the Collaborators”) will be in synch with the “Manager” licence. Combine this with the ability to save estimates to the Cloud or Server, and EstimatorXpress 2017 LIVE licences for each estimator, and the result is uniform service across the business with the team able to work more efficiently through smart collaboration. This simplifies a managers difficulties with holidays and time off as jobs can easily be picked up by anyone in the team.
Whether you want to back-up securely, simply carry on working on a job on a different device or invite others within your business to contribute to putting quotes together you’ll see that EstimatorXpress 2017 really is the best connected software on the market.
If you want to know more about how the server / cloud connection and manager collaboration features can help your business give us a call on 0117 9167898 and we can talk you through the advantages specific to you and your company.