One of the greatest challenges as an estimator is to effectively share and receive data across several different departments. Projects often involve a ton of cooks in the kitchen – general contractors, architects, project owners, and subcontractors typically all play significant roles throughout the life of a project. As a result, one of the biggest technology trends at the moment has been developing software and other processes that provide ease of communication across departments.
Many preconstruction teams have found that moving towards a single source of truth has been a huge help in eliminating communication gaps. Tools like DESTINI Estimator make it possible for teams to develop a historical database that they can use to keep track of projects both past and present. Additionally, replacing multiple tools with one estimating system is particularly beneficial for improving communication at companies with multiple offices – when everyone works in the same system, it’s much easier to share resources and collaborate on challenging projects.
Using one overarching estimating solution makes external communication smoother as well. These tools help a company create better standard practices for their preconstruction teams, which in turn results in cleaner and more consistent estimates, which means owners spend less time going back and forth over numbers with the general contractor. However, even the best estimating software on the market can’t completely eliminate miscommunication and information silos between departments. To tackle this, preconstruction teams have come up with a variety of creative solutions. For example, some teams have found it helpful to make quick videos that give a high-level overview of where the project is at, and then share it with stakeholders as a more efficient way of keeping them updated. Other teams have started holding collaborative discussions with subs, designers, and owners early on in the project so as to ensure that everyone is on the same page as soon as possible.
As technology continues to transform and revolutionize the preconstruction industry, it’s important to remember that while technology is useful, it is ultimately the collaboration and communication behind it that makes it all possible.