Estimating in Xero & simPRO

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The Solvere Team has experienced many operational scenarios across a variety of Solar, Electrical, HVAC and Plumbing companies. Estimating is usually on of the more difficult functions of business to run smoothly as it is from here that quotes are generated, products are picked and orders sent to suppliers and the work flow begins. It is therefore extremely important to spend time on the mapping and structure of cost centres in simPRO and understand how these will transfer to quotes and report across to your accounting system. Quite often this is simplified and rushed resulting in clunky financial reporting and an unnecessarily large P&L.

Estimating can be complicated and structuring it into a form that will have effective results can be frustrating at set up and can be a daunting task. For instance, you might be a large business that has multiple products and labour categories forming the one job. A roofing company, plasterer, fencing, window furnishings, all will have multiple options and offerings. Solar needs to track commercial offerings with GST and domestic without + linear options and calculations for the regulated sale back of solar energy. In these instances, we recommend a dissecting of current estimating techniques. If it is a convoluted spreadsheet for instance, what are the headings for each section and can these be utilised as cost centres? Can it be simplified and/or is it necessary to think about another product to ‘stack’ in the cloud mix for a more refined solution.  

In these circumstances it is very important to thoroughly scope any move or revision of systems,  whether moving for the first time into the cloud or fixing the clunky processes currently in place. This will result in a solution that will move the estimate into a quote that is useable and measurable. In turn this will help a project manager to ensure the job is on time and on quote.