Between providing estimates from take-offs and creating quotes, storing and accounting for inventory and shipping out product on time, building material suppliers are constantly juggling multiple tasks on tight deadlines. But the right business tools can help you find efficiencies and save you time and money.
Traditionally, a builder might take printed plans to a lumberyard or supply center and manually estimate take-offs. The process seems straightforward, but the downside of this method is that simple plans don’t often include all the information needed to order components, such as specialized roof trusses, floor trusses, windows and doors.
But there’s a better, clearer system for estimating and passing on information from a builder to the lumberyard or building supply center.
The heyday of the calculator and scratch pad has gone. A new generation of building industry professionals rely heavily on computers. As the industry changes and evolves, builders and building supply centers are slowly adopting building information modeling (BIM) and 3D modeling technology. Companies such as Cadsoft have created material take-off and design software solutions that share information with other programs for seamless integration and greater efficiency.