Commercial Construction & Contracting Resources

Evolution and Development in Construction Estimating

Posted by Tim Klingel on April 19, 2019

construction estimating

Estimation for a construction project is inherently a behind-the-scenes facet of a project. Additionally, it is the first step that is accomplished before the ball can really get going and construction can begin.

This guide aims to give a look behind the curtain of the estimation process. Additionally, in honor of our 30 year anniversary, we’re going to explore how estimating at Park Enterprise Construction has evolved.

Estimating at Park Enterprise Construction

When Park Enterprise Construction began, owner and founder Eric Park did estimates by hand with a legal pad and calculator.

Over time, he created a spreadsheet estimating tool that was used to calculate and help estimate cost of each project. This method of estimating was utilized effectively for a number of years.

10 years ago, Eric furthered his commitment to the estimating process by bringing on an experienced person to work in the Estimator role alongside him. 2 years ago, the estimating department was further expanded with the addition of two more team members, working in conjunction to provide estimates for various projects.

In addition to team growth, the estimating process has grown and evolved with technology.

Currently, the estimating team at Park Enterprise Construction uses an advanced software estimating program called HCSS HeavyBid to help speed up the bidding and estimation process, as well as continue their commitment to quality and accuracy.

6 Steps For Project Estimating

In conjunction with the HCSS software, the estimating team follows the same 6 step process for each project that comes in:

  1. Bid Request or Bid Determination
  2. Plan Acquisition
  3. Notice Sent and Takeoff
  4. Input Into Software
  5. Review Meeting
  6. Bid is Sent

These steps are explained further here:

1. Bid Request or Bid Determination

This step varies slightly depending on the project, and whether the team at Park Enterprise Construction has been contacted by an individual or general contractor for a project, or if PECCI initiates the bid on a project.

If the team is contacted for a bid, they closely examine the project to ensure that it is a good fit for PECCI by checking location of project, start date and general scope.

2. Plan Acquisition

After the project is deemed a good fit to move forward on, the project plans are obtained from the client or public authority.

3. Notice Sent and Takeoff

Once plans are received, a takeoff is performed and notices are sent to material suppliers and any subcontractors needed on the project and to complete the estimate.

4. Input Into Software

The takeoff information is entered into the HCSS heavy bid software and the estimate begins to formulate. After about 2-3 days, the material and subcontractor costs begin to come through, and a formal bid can be documented.

All of this takes place in the software.

5. Review Meeting Scheduled

Internally, the estimation team meets with President Eric Park to review the final bid and the scope of the project.

6. Bid is Sent

Depending on the project, either the bid is sent digitally for review, or the estimation team sits with the client or the General Contractor on the project to review the bid in detail.

Going through the bid in detail helps to give transparency into the estimation process, as well as build relationships with key project team members before the job begins.

Want to Get the Ball Rolling On Your Project?

All you have to do is reach out to the team at Park Enterprise Construction, and we can get started!

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