3 Reasons On-Screen Takeoff Is Holding You Back 

Man is frustrated with his on-premises computer set-up.

Are you a prisoner to your desktop computer? When you use on-premise software like OnScreen Takeoff (OST), you’re spending time disconnected from the jobsite and connected to an outdated system with infrequent updates. Would you rather be doing time in desktop jail or saving time with the flexibility to work anytime, anywhere? We’ll guide you through three reasons OST is hindering your business development and how STACK will empower you to grow! 

1. On-Premise Is Inflexible

OST is on-premise, not cloud-based, meaning you’re forced to work from your desktop computer. Desktop tools aren’t set up to share data with teams outside the estimating department, causing data silos and inefficient workflows across the organization.  

Additionally, their software is Windows-based and imposes specific tech requirements. It requires Windows 10, Intel Core i5 equivalent or better, 4GB RAM & 1GB of disk space, and must be installed by a Windows admin. On-premise servers are expensive and require expert IT staff to maintain. You’ll need to pay for a backup server at a separate location in the event of a fire or other natural disaster or risk losing everything. 

This is getting complicated. But wait, there’s more. 

It’s nearly impossible to use the software remotely, as you’d need a computer meeting OST requirements, a download of the software with a valid license, and a database of your company’s data on that machine. 

When using OST to reference plan pages during takeoff, you can only access them from the local network location. Inadvertent deletion or moving of these files will break the link, causing disruptions to workflows and possible lost data. 

2. Infrequent Updates Invite Risk

The world is moving at light speed these days. As you’re reading this sentence, something in your tech stack just became outdated. With updates only two or three times a year, OST leaves your data defenseless. Infrequent updates invite bugs, glitches, performance issues, and the inability to integrate with other technologies.  

Seldomly updated software also exposes your data to vulnerabilities surrounding security. Without the latest security updates or patches, you’re at high risk for a cybersecurity attack including malware, phishing, or a malicious data breach. How you manage and mitigate cyber risk is directly linked to your company’s reputation. Do you want to be viewed as untrustworthy?  

Whether a bug, performance issue, or cybersecurity attack, you increase the risk of losing data with OST. No one likes to do rework while on the jobsite, so why would you allow it in your preconstruction phase? Searching for documents, reentering data, and redoing a takeoff all equal wasted time. You’re also paying staff for potentially hours’ worth of rework, and that’s time they aren’t spending seeking out new work and bidding on other jobs – jobs that could have added to your profits. 

3. Outdated Tools Hold You Back

Desktop software was big in the ‘90s. Now, with geographically distributed and remote teams, a faster pace, and cutthroat competition, the desktop software that served you in the past is holding you back from future success.  

OST is a clunker when it comes to document management and interface. It’s very difficult to find the right document with no auto hyperlinking or full-text searching. It also takes many clicks to complete simple tasks, a reflection of subpar user experience.  

And with a rough UX comes slow onboarding. On-premise tools are difficult to master, often requiring months before new estimators can operate on their own. That’s a tough sell for Millennials and Gen Z workers, who expect simple, streamlined tech tools both in their personal lives and at work. 

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3 Reasons STACK Will Strengthen Your Business

Powerful, lightning-fast, and accurate: avoid OST headaches with STACK’s comprehensive takeoff and estimating solution! 

1. 100% Cloud-Based

It’s time to make the switch from on-premise to the cloud. With STACK’s best-in-class Takeoff & Estimating platform, you can: 

Cloud-based tools like STACK make working in today’s hybrid environment much simpler. No one is tied to a single machine in a central location, and your team can work around other commitments. This is also an excellent perk for drawing in younger workers who value flex time and remote options. 

Storing your data in the cloud means nothing gets lost on desktops, and version control is a non-issue. STACK allows you to customize permissions to share certain data sets with selected team members. You might retain full editing control of your items and assemblies while only allowing estimators to use those data sets. You can even give view-only access to GCs or owners. 

TecTon Construction
Washington, UT
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"It's cloud-based, you can use it on any device, any operating system, and it's everywhere you go. I do takeoffs in Maui while I"m on vacation, from wherever I'm at."
Warren Land Solutions
Nashville, TN
Read More
"One of my fav things is it's on a web browser, so I don't have to download software or have a particular computer I work from. I travel so I'm able to do takeoffs and estimates on the go."
Previous
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TecTon Construction
Washington, UT
Read More
"It's cloud-based, you can use it on any device, any operating system, and it's everywhere you go. I do takeoffs in Maui while I"m on vacation, from wherever I'm at."
Warren Land Solutions
Nashville, TN
Read More
"One of my fav things is it's on a web browser, so I don't have to download software or have a particular computer I work from. I travel so I'm able to do takeoffs and estimates on the go."

2. Integrated Estimating and Proposals

Unlike STACK, OST does not include itemized costs, labor rates, or material support. Their users must also purchase On Center Quick Bid for Estimating & Proposal generation – all of that comes included with STACK’s Preconstruction Platform! 

STACK’s Estimating Summary provides clarity on cost, overhead, markup, tax, and selling price for every type of project cost. With a click, you can drill down to summarized values and explore their underlying components and formulas. Instant access to these key metrics allows you to gain confidence in your estimates. You’ll know that you can successfully execute bigger, more complex projects and go on to win that next big job. 

Breckenridge Landscape
Wauwatosa, WI
Read More
“The thing I like about STACK is you’re building an estimate while you’re doing a takeoff in one place. With a couple clicks, you can format your contract and send it out anywhere in the world.”
Demotik
Cypress, TX
Read More
“STACK has saved us a ton of time. I’m not proud of saying this, but it used to take us a good week to knock out an estimate, whereas now it takes us a matter of hours.”
Previous
Next
Breckenridge Landscape
Wauwatosa, WI
Read More
“The thing I like about STACK is you’re building an estimate while you’re doing a takeoff in one place. With a couple clicks, you can format your contract and send it out anywhere in the world.”
Demotik
Cypress, TX
Read More
“STACK has saved us a ton of time. I’m not proud of saying this, but it used to take us a good week to knock out an estimate, whereas now it takes us a matter of hours.”

3. Quick Onboarding & Updates

STACK is always working to make a better product for our customers, and we listen to you! Our user interface is simple and intuitive, with customers reporting a significantly reduced learning curve and onboarding time compared to OST. You also have access to our award-winning customer support team to make starting quick and easy, and to address any training needs you have along the way. 

With the cloud, you get instant updates both for bug fixes and new features and functionality to help you do your job better – no workflow disruptions, no IT staff needed to install, and no extra charges. 

Cornerstone Restoration
Milwaukee, WI
Read More
"STACK is easy with a simple learning curve, not complicated like some of the other systems out there. We can effectively take plans and move them to projects."
RPM Concrete & Masonry
Clearwater, FL
Read More
“Excellent training and support. Roy gave us some great and immediately actionable pointers! Looking forward to our next training session!”
Previous
Next
Cornerstone Restoration
Milwaukee, WI
Read More
"STACK is easy with a simple learning curve, not complicated like some of the other systems out there. We can effectively take plans and move them to projects."
RPM Concrete & Masonry
Clearwater, FL
Read More
“Excellent training and support. Roy gave us some great and immediately actionable pointers! Looking forward to our next training session!”

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Ready to see the difference? Book a demo with us today! 

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