Snyder Langston to Implement DESTINI Estimator & Profiler

Snyder Langston has signed a three-year enterprise licensing agreement to implement and use DESTINI Estimator and DESTINI Profiler.

“We’ve used DESTINI Profiler with great success for several years. Due to this experience, we believe in the Beck Technology team and their ability to deliver the best next-generation estimating platform,” said Andy Gerlach, Technical Services Manager for Snyder Langston. “DESTINI Estimator complements DESTINI Profiler perfectly to provide a consistent progression from conceptual design to construction. From start to finish, the DESTINI suite will allow our team to communicate more clearly, accurately, and efficiently—allowing Snyder Langston to continue offering the best service and experience to our clients.”

Established in 1959 in Irvine, California, Snyder Langston is a trusted real estate and construction adviser to Fortune 500, mid-size, and start-up companies. One of Southern California’s largest and most respected builders, the firm has developed millions of square feet of space across virtually every real estate sector. Snyder Langston jumped into the ENR Top 400 General Contractors list in 2015.

“We consider it a privilege to help Snyder Langston implement our DESTINI product suite and support the firm’s ongoing commitment to technology and innovation in the construction industry,” said Stewart Carroll, Beck Technology’s COO.

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The Howard Hughes Corporation Selects DESTINI Estimator to Increase Speed and Collaboration for Estimates

Beck Technology, leading software and service firm for the commercial construction industry, announced The Howard Hughes Corporation (HHC) has selected DESTINI Estimator software to provide intelligent estimating technology through an enterprise licensing deal. The five-year software agreement includes custom development to add functionality within DESTINI Estimator to enhance specific HHC historic cost workflow.

The developer and operator conducted a thorough evaluation of estimating solutions prior to selecting Beck Technology’s product. The analytics in DESTINI Estimator’s comparison functionality provided HHC with a level of insight into projects previously not available and that HHC felt no other software provided.

HHC already relies on the DESTINI Profiler software to quickly conceptualize and manipulate concepts internally in the early stages of projects, even before an architect is on board. Katie Willis, director of preconstruction and estimating for The Howard Hughes Corporation, noted recently that “DESTINI Profiler is a game changer for us to communicate and speed up the design process. Additionally, the Beck Technology team has been great to work with and helpful in allowing us to gain access and knowledge of the software.”

HHC owns, manages, and develops commercial, residential, and mixed-use real estate throughout the U.S. The company is comprised of master planned communities, operating properties, development opportunities, and other assets spanning 16 states and with more than 1,100 employees.

“We are thrilled and honored that The Howard Hughes Corporation has chosen to implement DESTINI Estimator and extend its relationship with Beck Technology,” said Stewart Carroll, Beck Technology’s COO. “HHC’s core values of collaboration, speed, excellence, and innovation perfectly complement our values and mandate for our software.”

McCrory Construction Wows Customers with Fast, Accurate Models and Estimates

In continual operation as a general contractor since 1918 and with as much as 90 percent of its business coming from repeat customers, McCrory Construction for decades used traditional spreadsheet-based estimating methods for most projects. But for preconstruction and design-build projects that called for collaboration with architects and owners earlier in the process, the firm sensed that spreadsheets and drawings weren’t enough and sought a more integrated, visual option.

“We would go through the process from schematic design and drawings to final drawings and implementation in the field, but we never had a visual representation of what we were doing beyond the architect drawing,” says Matt Solomon, an estimator for McCrory with nearly two decades of experience.

To maintain and expand McCrory’s position as a leading force in the Southeast construction market across 13 states, the company invested in Beck Technology’s DESTINI Profiler in 2009. The small, fourth-generation, privately-owned firm is the first of its size in the region to embrace this next-level estimating technology, gaining a competitive advantage with faster, more accurate estimates and impressive visualization capabilities.

“We are at the forefront of technology in our area overall and especially for a firm of our size,” says Solomon. “Incorporating DESTINI Profiler in the preconstruction process has, and does, serve as a strong point of difference for our firm. Customers respond with shock and awe when presented with a detailed 3D model, complete with pricing in a matter of days, making DESTINI Profiler a valuable marketing tool. The technology speeds collaboration and improves transparency with owners and architects for projects.”

Design on the Fly

Combining 3D modeling with pricing, DESTINI Profiler allows the McCrory team and their clients to visualize in 3D how different design elements affect pricing and creates more accurate estimates than could be achieved with 2D drawings.

“The technology gives a true visualization of everything we are doing,” says Solomon. “It’s very impressive to owners that we can make changes on the fly, with the click of a button. We’re able to explore in real-time how changing a finish option or room configuration will impact the visual model as well as the overall project cost.”

By pulling topography data from Google Maps into DESTINI Profiler, Solomon can visualize exactly how a building would sit on the contours of the land. This application was particularly helpful for one multifamily project, in which two stories of parking were to be built beneath the building on a sloped site.

“The ability to pull in images from Google Maps and set the project on the exact site to show the elevations from a true vantage point wows our clients,” Solomon says. “It’s hard to envision two stories of parking with half in the ground and half above ground on one site. When you are able to take a building and lay it on a site using the actual layout perspective, that’s priceless.”

Working with subcontractors, he established specific pricing for each type of unit in the building, then assigned those values to each unit in the model. As Solomon built out the 3D model, he worked on the conceptual design with the owner, who was able to visualize via DESTINI Profiler each unit and floor within the building and what was included in the pricing. The entire model and estimate was complete within three weeks.

Another project, a small office building, took just five days to model and price, including creation of several site concepts with different building skins, window arrangements, and finishes. The result was a clear view into how the various options would affect pricing.

Rather than simply viewing a list of numbers and trying to imagine a building in his head, he is now able to visualize every angle of a finished structure, price out various options, and clearly show owners what they are getting for their money so they can make informed decisions.

A former construction superintendent and project manager, Solomon is also pleased that DESTINI Profiler catches measurement and other errors that might have been overlooked in drawings, avoiding problems during construction.

Cost Database Under Construction

With each project Solomon estimates using DESTINI Profiler, additional cost data are built into a growing database. As he estimates different types of projects – from multifamily properties to commercial, industrial, medical, or retail facilities – all cost data for specific elements stay in the system, making estimating similar projects in the future faster and easier. Solomon predicts estimated to actual project cost accuracy is better than 10 percent improved using the software.

To further build out the DESTINI Profiler database, Solomon has reverse-engineered projects that have already been bid or built, transforming lump-sum pricing into square-footage and per-room macro BIM pricing that can be quickly applied to future estimates. He has created several pre-programmed packages with specific line items for different types of rooms, such as a women’s restroom or hospital room, and across various building formats. In one instance, he selected a multi-floor university alumni center project where the technology allowed him to create a 3D model and accurately apply cost to each office space, common area and room, taking into account everything from ceiling height to cabinetry and flooring.

He is also upgrading and converting the company’s existing database into a new master format that will seamlessly integrate with DESTINI Profiler, work with any architect’s systems, and feed information directly into McCrory’s accounting software.

“The idea is to build a robust database, so when we have a client that comes to us with a similar project, I’ve already got the data in the system and can build the model on the fly, providing an accurate market price,” he says. “We’re able to estimate more projects in less time and reduce any learning curve.”

As the pricing database grows along with Solomon’s skills using the software, he has turned around small-building estimates in just a few days and large, highly complex projects within three weeks, allowing McCrory to get owners the estimates they need faster.

Building on two days of initial training in 2014 at Beck Technology’s headquarters in Dallas, Solomon receives ongoing support from Beck Technology via individual web conferences, adding to his arsenal of techniques for tackling specific challenges.

“It’s been very productive,” Solomon says. “They can see what stage I’m at on a project and offer the pointers I need to keep moving forward and developing my skills.”

Currently, McCrory is training additional estimators on the system and integrating DESTINI Profiler with DESTINI Estimator, streamlining the entire end-to-end construction process from estimating through project management, accounting, and production. Per Solomon, the combination will yield powerful results by embedding estimate line items with intelligence directly from the 3D models they were born from.

Cunningham-Limp Embraces Big Technology for Bigger Benefits

When Preconstruction Estimator David Hardin joined Cunningham-Limp in 2014, one of the first initiatives he spearheaded was the adoption of Beck Technology’s DESTINI Profiler estimating platform to win more work. Having seen a demonstration of the software at his previous employer, he knew it could have a big impact on the small design-build firm, which has fewer than 30 employees and a commitment to continuous improvement through technology.

“It works very well for conceptual estimating,” Hardin says. “We receive much of our business from repeat clients that know what to expect when they come to us, so we make quite a few decisions and assumptions based on past experience, and that level of decision-making fits well with what DESTINI Profiler is able to do. I could see a clear path; we could program the software to do exactly what we were doing manually.”

Read More

Choose the Right Technology and Software Platform in Four Easy Steps

This article was written by Stewart Carroll and published in the July-August 2016 issue of Design Cost Data Magazine.

When faced with tough business decisions of any type, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by uncertainty. There are many factors to consider before a company commits to moving forward with option 1, option 2, or option 3. What if there is another option that hasn’t been considered or there are unknown risks with the preferred option? From a management perspective, is this the right choice for the company’s future? From an implementer’s perspective, does the company have the resources and support to derive the value from the decision?

But choosing a software program doesn’t have to be one of those overwhelming decisions. Regardless of the type of software – be it estimating, accounting, project management or other, these four steps will help streamline the selection process, allowing you to make the right decision faster:

  1. Know your company’s objectives
  2. Secure support from management
  3. Evaluate solutions and vendors
  4. Create an implementation plan

Read more

Newsletter Q2

It’s hard to believe that we’re two quarters down and two to go for 2016. Are your business goals on track thus far?

At Beck Technology, we’ve had a busy second quarter with software releases for both our DESTINI Estimator & Profiler products as well as attendance and speaking at many industry events over the spring. Please find below a quick recap and links to learn more—and to watch our client project videos from the Beck Technology Roundtable.

Wishing you a great 4th of July holiday and a productive third quarter!

DESTINI in Action

Two Software Releases Now Available

The long-awaited DESTINI Estimator 2016 2.0 is here! If you missed our debut webinar led by our CTO
Michael Boren, we’ve provided a link below. Michael showcases some of the most-requested new features, including Navisworks integration and the 2D and 3D takeoff views.

Webinar Recording: What’s New in DESTINI Estimator 2016 2.0?

Also, this quarter
DESTINI Profiler 2017 1.0 was released. The update can handle extremely larger models as well as offers better support for Windows 10. When a 3D model is created, the software provides instant feedback on data such as cost, energy, lifecycle, and schedule.

The Early Bird Gets the Worm (or the Project)

Winning work has a lot to do with talent, but also plenty to do with timing. While other companies are still at the drafting table, Bouma Construction is already in the meeting room, presenting granular estimates and 3D models. Bouma wins work by using DESTINI Profiler to give clients the answers they need at the earliest possible point in the preconstruction process. Bouma’s Preconstruction Manager Corey Torres provides the case in point examples in this profile, including:

  • Bouma received a project call on a Friday afternoon and was able to turn around four building models (with different layouts and pricing) for a Monday afternoon design charrette with the client.
  • Bouma turned around a parametric building cost model for a five-story building in one day. The early cost model came in within 3 percent of the final submitted proposal.

Read Bouma’s full DESTINI in Action profile here.

O’Neal, Inc: Video Q&A

We recently sat down with David Hardy, Architect – Preconstruction Facilities Manager, with O’Neal, Inc. to discuss his views on DESTINI Profiler and Beck Technology. O’Neal uses Profiler to better communicate and engage with clients and to offer a way for client preferences to be implemented on the fly during meetings. The company uses the software for almost every project to help shape the direction in the early stages before entering the formal design phase. Watch the short video by clicking below.

Roundtable Videos Posted Online

Our annual Beck Technology Roundtable was held in April and featured content-rich presentations by our clients. For those unable to travel and join us, we’ve uploaded the videos, complete with a split-screen view of the actual presentation slides, to our YouTube account.

Please access the videos here:

In the News

Our team regularly posts short blogs on their LinkedIn profiles. They discuss technology trends in some though the primary focus is broader topics such as culture, hiring, millennials, leadership. Plus, you’ll find each full of personal anecdotes, questions, and even some wit.

We invite you to connect with our team on LinkedIn to follow and learn more:

Stewart CarrollChief Operating Officer

Michael Boren, Chief Technology Officer

Tyler BarronAccount Executive

Julie Huval, CPSM, Marketing Director

Sandy DamascoCustomer Experience Lead

Stewart has just launched a series on how employees impact company culture. His upcoming blogs feature some Beck Technology spotlights. Read the first blog featuring our QA Manager Stephanie Greene.

Coming Up

Webinar: Evaluating 5D Solutions

Please join us on Wednesday, July 27th at 10AM Central to hear from Nick Kurth of PCL. Nick will be sharing the evaluation process his company went through when selecting a 5D solution.

Take a Virtual Tour

If you’d like a firsthand view of the new features we’ve rolled out this quarter for DESTINI Estimator and Profiler, we’d love to you give you an online tour. Please contact us to request a personal demo.