Breaking down the workflow for a construction estimate requires consistency and accuracy. That’s why it’s extremely important to use the intuition and experience you’ve gained from completing previous construction projects. Although Sigma gives you flexibility on how to break down a structure, sometimes you’re given a specific structure that you have to use. In that case, you need to make sure not to fall into the common trap of forgetting something in the estimate. Another common mistake is trying to make the structure too complex. As the complexity increases, it’s key to make sure that all the quantities are located in one place. That way, if you need to make a change to a quantity, you won’t have to remember to do it in multiple locations.
While Sigma can’t remind you to include everything in the estimate, it does provide templates. Every time you discover that you need to add something to a project, simply add it to the template so it will be there next time you start a construction project. It’s also helpful to use a workflow that starts by brainstorming about what’s included in the project, instead of just thinking in terms of quantities and specific unit costs. You can always come back to that later, and that’s one of the things that’s really easy to do in Sigma.
Sigma is different from some of the other solutions on the market, and those differences lead to fewer mistakes. It’s very intuitive, and many tasks can be performed with drag and drop. Additionally, there aren’t lots of dialog boxes that will pop up and interrupt your workflow to ask questions. It’s much more like a spreadsheet, which is well-adopted all over the world. There are no black boxes where you enter numbers to get a result without understanding what’s going on under the hood. You can always follow every number and understand exactly how it’s being calculated.
Software only works to avoid mistakes if it really understands what it’s trying to solve. Take Excel, for example, which is a very general purpose tool. It wouldn’t understand if the user is making a document for a construction project or a questionnaire. Therefore, it can’t assist you with the goals involved in your work. Sigma is specifically tailored and adapted for the way that construction professionals work. It knows that you need to find a cost price, figure out overhead and profit, etc., so all those features are built right in based on the experience of daily work for construction estimating.