3 Reasons PlanSwift Is Holding You Back

It’s a huge difference from our experience with PlanSwift, where it took us months to get a new estimator comfortable. We can get an estimator drawing accurate takeoffs in a couple of weeks with STACK.
Exterior Wholesale Supply

Using PlanSwift in today’s fast-paced construction environment and expecting efficiency, higher bid volume, and better win rates is a bit crazy! From file corruption to bottlenecks in your workflow to problems with version control, desktop software is just madness. 

On-premise desktop software is like trying to send emails from a flip phone. Old-school tools like PlanSwift only hold you back from success. 

STACK is one of the most intuitive all-in-one construction platforms on the market. We’ll guide you through three ways PlanSwift is slowing you down and how STACK will accelerate business growth in today’s challenging bidding landscape.

1. Prisoner To Your Desktop: A Recipe for Data Disaster

PlanSwift users are required to download and install the software on Windows or if using a MAC, install with a Windows Emulator and a valid Windows OS – a hidden cost with the license. In an era where cross-platform compatibility is expected, this is a huge obstacle if you rely on different operating systems, like MacOS or iOS. Desktop software also raises concerns about the security and maintenance of the software.

If your entire team isn’t in the same location as the computer hosting PlanSwift, there is no way for anyone else to see the projects. This leads to risky behaviors like emailing sensitive documents or sharing login information, let alone time wasted getting to the office to access important documents and project files.

In addition to that headache, every time you get a new computer or upgrade your operating system your software needs to follow otherwise you could have issues with compatibility. Infrequent software updates are prone to bugs, glitches, performance issues, and the inability to integrate with other technologies. Don’t just take our word from it, hear it from Exterior Wholesale Supply who had a nightmare experience with PlanSwift!

EWS struggled through constant IT issues and file corruption problems, leaving them doing tons of rework on 20-30% of their jobs. Sound unbearable? It gets worse. With no file backups from PlanSwift, when a mistake caused their items and assemblies to be deleted, they were left in the lurch and had to shut down for nearly TWO ENTIRE WEEKS, with $3 million in sales tied up due to the issue. Switching to STACK was a no-brainer, and now the EWS team knows their data is safe in the cloud, and they’re getting 20-40% more bids out the door. 

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 (like EWS…). Additionally, desktop tools also aren’t set up to share data with teams outside the estimating department, causing data silos and inefficient workflows across the organization. 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.

2. The Triple Threat: No Text Search, Workflow Management, or Estimating Proposal

With that kind of headline, do you even want to use their solution?! With PlanSwift’s poor Optical Character Recognition (OCR) it’s hard for the software to convert digital images into textual data, one of the reasons the software lacks text search capabilities. Can you imagine clicking through 100 pages of plans to find any mention of “foundation” or “joist”? It’s a horrible waste of your time doing manual tasks that a software solution should be capable of doing for you. 

PlanSwift also has zero workflow and task management features. When collaboration is vital for teams to stay connected in the construction lifecycle, how are you supposed to know who is assigned to what project? Or the status of a bid? Or manage account access if you have a confidential project requiring specific team members only?

And to round things up, there is no built-in proposal capability in the software. Not only is the estimate function itself clunky, complex, and requires training – users can’t produce professional proposals to tie a bow on their bids. They have to use disconnected systems, manually transfer data, and create repetitive documents.

3. An Ancient User-Interface

PlanSwift has an outdated user interface dating back to 2010. Tech updates faster than you can read this sentence, so working in 13-year-old software is kind of insane! That’s a tough sell for Millennials and Gen Z workers, who expect state-of-the-art, simple, streamlined tech tools both in their personal lives and at work. 

With poor user experience comes difficulty finding the right documents – especially with no full-text searching – resulting in a lot of wasted time. An old UI/UX also means a slower onboarding experience, ultimately impacting the quality and timeliness of project deliverables.

Bid Faster. Win More. Build Smarter.

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3 Reasons STACK Accelerates Business Growth

Powerful, lightning-fast, accurate, and MOBILE: ditch the solution that keeps you locked to your desk and enjoy some freedom with STACK’s comprehensive takeoff and estimating solution!

I love how you can search keywords through plans. When we send a quote over that really helps me when trying to beat my competition.
Denver Winwater, Supplier, Commerce City, CO

1. More Capabilities

STACK gives your business the competitive edge with our high-level features, from hyper-accurate takeoffs and customizable proposals to full-text search and easy-to-use workflow and task management tools. How you deliver your bids to a GC, owner, or client can make or break your chance to win. With STACK you can create polished, customizable proposals with your company logo, scope of work, terms and conditions, and more.

STACK’s account and user management allow you to assign projects, add project status, grant private access to specific projects, and create offices to segment projects and users by location. STACK also 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!

Collaborate more efficiently and effectively with your team, whether you’re in the office together, working remotely, or in multiple locations across the country. 

2. 100% Cloud-Based with an Intuitive Interface

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. 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.

"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." – TecTon Construction, Washington, UT
"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." – Warren Land Solutions, Nashville, TN

3. In Sickness and Health, We’re Here for the Long Haul

STACK ain’t goin’ nowhere. We’re a long-term solution and a true partner. We’re not looking to sunset our product like ConstructConnect may do yet AGAIN with PlanSwift. STACK was founded in 2012 and is continuously investing to improve our platform with one focus – to grow YOUR business. We’re in the business of making you more money, increasing efficiency and collaboration, and saving you time so you can invest it where it matters most to you. Count on us to say, “I do.

“I’ve been a user of STACK for seven or eight years, so I’m a little spoiled. It’s increased my productivity, made me twice as fast with just the developments and improvements that have been made, and we definitely land more bids.”

We Couldn’t Stop at 3...

STACK gives you MAJOR capabilities for your business to succeed! 

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


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