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Full Spectrum Estimating Services

Current economic conditions are making new project financing extremely difficult; and even when money does come available, owner and financial institution expectations demand design and building costs that are dramatically below the average of a few years ago. The pressure on teams to perform more efficiently, quickly, and with greater accuracy has never been more intense. Whether engaged in Design-Build, CM at Risk, or a collaborative approach such as IPD, all members of the team must find better ways to approach the process.

The goals of the estimating personnel in this new environment include:
  • Finding ways to accomplish the entire estimating process with fewer personnel.
  • Assisting the process to reach decisions at an earlier time in the design when greater value can be realized.
  • The ability to provide real-time information to all key personnel on the owner/designers/contractor team so that decisions that control the budget can be made in a pro-active timeframe rather than having to wait for milestone estimates.
  • Provide accurate pricing for design intent that allows the multiple layers of contingency typical in today's practice to be greatly reduced or eliminated.
  • Provide information in a format that is easily understood by non-estimating personnel.
  • Support an alternative design process with accurate, real-time information.
  • Assemble information in a format that feeds downstream to construction personnel and owner's facility managers, and maximizes the VDC process.

Today's new technology and processes, utilized in an integrated, collaborative approach have the potential to accomplish these goals while still rewarding all partners for their contributions.

5D BIM Systems

A 5D BIM system enables the estimators to have their database integrated with elements in a modeling system so that quantity takeoffs are automatically generated along with standard unit pricing for materials, equipment and labor. And since the model elements can be selectively displayed for each section or floor of a building, the associated material cost and quantities can easily be isolated for cash flow analysis and material ordering. Alternative design scenarios can also quickly be evaluated during design sessions, and overall budget updates provided to decision makers in real-time.

This system can also eliminate the old practice of having to wait for designers to produce milestone documents that estimates are then prepared from. The need to repeatedly wait for 3 to 4 weeks for estimators to produce quantity surveys and pricing, while the designers continue their design development, only to discover the need to go back and alter the design to maintain budget is tremendously inefficient. This "two steps forward and one step back" procedure wastes design resources and lengthens the delivery schedule. Estimating systems that are tied to BIM capabilities and work in a live, collaborative design environment can provide the ability to address this problem while saving estimating labor.

Target Value Design/Set Based Design

Information databases tied to 5D modeling capabilities can bring clarity to conceptual designs and assist in the establishment of Target Value budgets. This process commits the team to maintaining a set budget with limited contingencies based on a defined set of owner priorities.

Scheduling Interface

Estimating systems can also tie to scheduling systems through the use of the detailed productivity rates in the data base. When utilized in system components and displayed visually through 3D models, this capability can assist greatly in sequence planning, labor crew staffing requirements and production tracking.

Reporting Capabilities

Too often todays construction cost updates require lengthy group meetings where an estimator must interpret the huge quantities of information from software programs that only he has and understands. It is very difficult and time consuming for decision makers to keep current on details that can hugely affect their ability to maintain a budget. Reporting systems that gather critical information into a user defined dashboard from all software programs used by every team member are now available. The reports even operate with pre-determined analysis capabilities that separate items into safe/marginal/critical groupings so that managers can quickly decide where they need to direct their attention. The system is available from any web enabled device world-wide.

Downstream Uses of 5D Information

Detailed pricing information and selected vendor information can be transferred into the owner's Facilities Management system as a resource for future operation and maintenance purposes.

Aspenhills Consulting Estimating Services

  • Acting as your value agents to facilitate the incorporation of the estimating team and all other design and construction team components into a unified system that maximizes the value of BIM/VDC capabilities.
  • Creation of Conceptual Estimates and Supporting 3D Models
  • Assistance in creation of a Target Value Design budget which incorporate owner priority lists
  • Live design team estimating support through meeting attendance
  • Trending Estimates
  • Detailed Design Phase Check Estimates of Contractors and Subcontractors
  • Estimate Information Ties to Cross-Platform Reporting Systems
  • Facilities Management Estimating/Purchasing System Creation and Implementation/Training/Support
  • Assistance in Selection and Implementation of Computerized Estimating Systems to Include Software and Required Hardware
  • Creation of Estimating Assemblies
  • 5D Estimating System Implementation
  • Estimating System Productivity Ties to 4D Scheduling Systems
  • Assistance in the creation of Conceptual Estimates And Supporting 3D Models
  • Detailed Design Phase Estimates
  • Design Alternative Estimates
  • Estimate Information Ties to Cross-Platform Reporting Systems
  • Training and Support
  • Ongoing Estimating System Upgrades and Knowledge Base Experts

Our team leaders have over 65 years of actual construction estimating experience as Chief Estimators and Vice Presidents of Preconstruction with commercial construction companies. This experience includes leading estimating departments in the assembly of over $40 billion of estimates both in hard bid and preconstruction services environments and covers the full spectrum of commercial and public facilities as well as utilities and heavy civil projects. Our background also includes the selection, implementation, training and use of the software and hardware necessary to support the estimating departments that we led.

Aspenhills Consulting wants to be your knowledge experts for the estimating requirements of your project as well as the selection, implementation, and integration of systems for your company. Since we are not tied to any specific software provider, we are free to select systems that work for your unique situation and goals.

We understand the need to make your estimating component work as an integrated part of the entire system. This holistic approach is the key to maximizing value for all team members and the project as a whole.