With World of Concrete and AHR Expo taking place in January and IBS (Intl. Builders Show) just around the corner, a number of construction technology providers are coming to market with new solutions for the industry. One area in particular is estimating construction software.

With estimating, accuracy is key. To meet this need, construction technology providers are coming to market with new products, functions, and integrations to help make material pricing more precise.

Early this week, Tech Unlimited, www.planswift.com, Henderson, Nev., announced SwiftMarket—a new product to complement the company’s takeoff software, PlanSwift. SwiftMarket is a material manufacturing estimating tool, which allows manufacturers to catalog their products including spec manuals and installation guides. The data can be integrated with PlanSwift, giving contractors the ability to easily estimate a project.

Matthew Miller, vice president of marketing, PlanSwift, says this gives the power to the material manufacturing industry to create their own advertising catalogs that are easily integrated with PlanSwift—ultimately allowing users to retrieve actual product data in realtime.

Accurate material pricing is vital when estimating a product. Yesterday, TurboBid, www.turbobid.net, Plainfield, Ill., announced a new TurboPricer material pricing function. Electrical and plumbing contractors can use the feature to update the material prices to reflect the current vendor pricing, as well as the average market pricing. Here is how it works: A list containing the items in the estimate is electronically sent to each vendor’s pricing file and is instantly matched, allowing the software to immediately reflect current vendor pricing.

While SwiftMarket and TurboPricer are new to the construction technology market this week, other estimating construction software already on the market contains similar functions and features.

In October, On Center Software, www.oncenter.com, The Woodlands, Texas, announced integration between Quick Bid and Armstrong World Industries Inc., www.armstrong.com, Lancaster, Pa. The two companies worked together to build data such as pricing, component lists, and installation instructions for hundreds of Armstrong ceiling materials. With Quick Bid’s predefined database of vendor pricing, an estimate is more accurate.

Estimating providers continue working with material manufacturers to give construction companies an easier way to estimate a project. Having the material pricing information readily available at the ‘click of a button’ will save construction companies a significant amount of time when bidding a job—not to mention help contractors create an estimate that accurately reflects current vendor pricing.