Estimating, Re-Estimating & Change Orders Kill A Business - How to Make Them Painless & Automated

3 min readNovember 21, 2019

I was talking to a good friend of mine the other day who's the Chief at a fire station but on the side builds custom homes and does custom remodeling and renovations. He does really good work but can't quit his firefighting job because of how much time estimates, re-estimates, and change orders take. It's not the actual work that's the problem... that part he shines. It's the growing and scaling of his company without spending so much time doing admin stuff. This is just one story, I wonder how many contractors are in the same boat? Whether you are running a small company or large one, the problems are still the same. The larger companies just tend to have more resources to put towards such tedious things as estimates, re-estimates and change orders. But, either way, I've never met a company yet in construction that feels really good about these 3 things. Even if they are using technology, most solutions aren't addressing the root of the problem.And what about all the custom home builders out there who have a great company but don't feel like it is sellable? Maybe you are tied to the estimates and running most of the processes within your company and it makes it really hard to sell it to someone else. What if you could automate a lot of the admin process and make your company a lot more sellable?Bolster has reinvented the way residential construction services are bought and sold. We have an entirely new approach to how estimates are built & delivered and we've automated a big part of re-estimates and change orders. This was not easy to do. It has taken years of building a robust platform capable enough to make this possible. And we didn't outsource the development to some third party developer who has no clue about the construction industry. One of the founders ran a 35 employee contracting company and is an experienced programmer and he built the entire platform from ground-up for contractors. So what makes Bolster so unique?It starts with our proprietary quoting engine. That's the core of the platform. We reinvented the way quotes are done by making it so that all a person has to do is enter in the dimensions of a room and every line item is updated in real-time with an accurate price. No more spending hours building an accurate quote. Just measure, add dimensions and send. I realize it might sound too good to be true and the custom home builders out there are thinking, "No way this would work for me, my projects are way too custom". But, the truth is we have custom home builders using it and it's reduced their quoting time from over 4 hrs to under 20 min and their re-estimates are now consumer driven! The key is that within our quoting engine you can add upgrades and optional items that are also tied to the dimensions. That means your customer gets an interactive quote that they can play with in real-time and can customize anything you want. As a contractor, you would be surprised how many of your customers will upgrade. Our stats show that over 80% of consumers choose to upgrade something within the quote. And the best part is re-estimates are not done by the contractor! Now the consumer is changing the quote on the fly and can book online. You don't need to worry about losing the project because the consumer is requesting you to add something or remove something and wants a new quote. Of course, once the project is booked change orders are done in a similar way. The contractor can make a few adjustments and resend and the customer can approve with a click of a button. Everything is tracked right down to how the change impacted every line item. Have you clicked on our features tab to watch our demo video? It will help you see how our quote engine works along with the interactive proposals.If you want to make your company more scalable and easier to grow by solving the problems around estimates, re-estimates & change orders then give Bolster a try.

Construction Estimating Software