Creating an Estimate
Purpose: Creating an estimate for a new contract job. It will contain the required components for the job which typically include materials, labor, and other related items. From this initial process the user creates the foundation for the work to be undertaken.
· Capture all details that are incurred in the creation of a job.
· Summarize costs of the Job’s Categories and determine the markup percentage to arrive at a scheduled value for the job.
· Enter parts and items by hand or import them from a spreadsheet or 3rd party provider.
After creating a contract job, the user can generate multiple estimates for negotiation with the customer. Materials, parts, and other items can be entered by hand or imported from lists or spreadsheets.
Once terms are set as to what is needed to fulfill the job’s requirements and a decision is made on a specific estimate, the user can finalize it as a non-editable and binding contract. Once finalizing the estimate as a contract, all other estimates are automatically deleted. Note: This is a checkbox option set on the Contract Job Configuration screen, as only one contract can be made per job.
1. The image above is a good illustration of a contract having more than one estimate. By keeping the description fully descriptive of the actual work it’s easy to see the differences at a glance. Up to 100 characters can be entered in the description and what is entered is an important choice so be clear and enter meaningful information. There may end up being several estimates and looking for one will be easier based on the description. Note: Description will print on the customer’s bill and cannot be changed after finalization.
2. To make a new estimate, click the Create New Estimate button resulting in the screen image below. Enter a Document ID and Description, as indicated in the sample.
3. To enter items, select one of the tabs on the screen below (Materials, Labor or Other) to set the grid for entry. Notice when a tab is selected the grid changes. When the Materials tab is selected the Part Number column displays but if the user chooses the Labor tab then the Labor Code column displays. And if the Other tab is selected the ID column displays. Remember: Items can be entered by hand or imported from spreadsheets.
The Materials tab (illustrated below) has been selected and items are in the process of being added. The Part Number column is type free-form and the user can add any part or item. On the Billing Category column drop-down, choose the billing category the part is actually in. On the Cost Category column drop-down, choose the cost category the part is actually in. After choosing a billing category and cost category, enter the estimated quantity and estimated cost. The estimated cost is per unit and will extend accordingly.
Click the Labor tab and notice the grid change to accommodate Labor Code items. The screen below illustrates a labor item being added. The user can enter any item and description by selecting the Billing Category column drop-down and Cost Category column drop-down that best defines the item.
The Other tab can be selected which changes the grid again. Notice what happens when selecting the Other tab. With this selection the user can enter permits, rentals, freight, or similar items.
The user can always select a tab to see what parts or items have been added so far. Keep adding line items until the estimate is inclusive of what it will take to do the job. Click the Save button to save the work and come back to it to add more.
4. When satisfied with this estimate, but are not ready to summarize it, click the Save button. Create as many estimates as needed by repeating these steps but remember to alter the description for each estimate. All estimates for this job can be opened at any time from the main menu by selecting Contracts > Open Contract jobs.
5. When ready to summarize to estimate, a very important step before finalizing the estimate and making a contract, click the Summarize To Estimate button.