Project estimate: an important factor in successful construction and cost control
The project begins with the idea, preparation of pre-project documentation, design and development of project documentation.
The cost estimate is developed based on the design data and is a list of works necessary for the implementation of the project. The list of works is formed by parts, which in the estimate are divided into sections of the local estimate, local estimates, object estimates and are accumulated in the Consolidated estimate. This breakdown of work by groups of work forms the WBS of the project - the Work Breakdown Structure. The work consists of resources (material, labor, machinery) and overhead costs necessary to perform the work, the cost of which determines the cost of the work, and the total cost of the work determines the cost of the project.
So the Estimate is a document that contains a list of works, materials and services necessary for the implementation of the project or construction work, as well as the planned costs of these elements.
Specialized software products such as "Estimate", "Estimating Technologies" and others are used to prepare an estimate. These products are intended for drawing up an estimate and creating project documentation, such as the estimate itself, acts of completed works, their specialized forms KB2b, KB3b, acts of write-off of materials for work - forms M19 and M29. Also, the estimate is a mandatory appendix to the contract between the customer and the construction company. But such specialized programs do not cover the need for operational accounting of work performance, accounting of materials, mutual settlements on the project and other accounting needs.
In Dedal Construction Project Management Software (hereinafter Dedal CPMS) it is possible to create an estimate using the Work Plan. This system object performs several functions, that is, it has several entities: ● estimate;● planning of works in the period; resource planning;● financial plan - economic essence (income-expenditure=marginality);● actual performance of work - plan\actual analysis. In this article, we will consider only the function of making an estimate. The estimate in the program can be created with the following options: ● download from a file;● to form directly in the program, i.e. manually, or using regulatory collections;● using from the template.
Downloading an estimate from a file
If specialized systems are used to prepare the estimate, then the estimate in Outbox.xls or xml format can be uploaded to the system through processing according to the specified Project. In this case, the structure of works, the so-called WBS, will be formed based on the division of works into object, local and sections of local estimates (Tree of works). Work, physical volume of work and the total cost of work make up the Work table. Material, labor and machine resources, cost norms per unit of physical volume of work, the total number of work costs, the price and sum of costs for each resource - make up the direct cost of work.
The estimate is downloaded in full, including the Bill of Lading. In specialized estimating systems, material at work rates is often used, but this is not convenient for operational accounting, so all materials at cost are entered as resources in the work, which is above the material at cost. But when loading, both options are possible, both in the estimate and materials in the work. When loading, Invoices are not calculated, but a fixed amount is added to each type of work, as indicated in the estimate.
We record in the system the Project and Version of the project, according to which the estimate was downloaded, and save the data.
The estimate is ready, the cost of the estimate must match the total cost of the Consolidated Estimate.
The "Project Data: Hierarchy" report displays complete information on the Estimate.
Create a Work Plan manually
Fill in the basic analytics of the project
Specify the project, version of the project, Customer of the project, types of prices for calculation of cost and realization, and other project analytics in the "Basic" tab:
Create the Project Structure in the Work Plan
We remind you that the Work Structure (WBS) of the project or the Work Tree is formed on the basis of the division of works into object, local and sections of local estimates, therefore, this principle for division of works is also used for the formation of the estimate directly in the system.
In the formation of the structure, classifiers are used, which allow, firstly, to group expenses or funds based on the analysis of these classifiers in the future; secondly, to compare the sums of costs/expenditures for the analysis of classifiers for different projects, thirdly, to reduce the number of errors when establishing connections between works when planning a project in time.
In practice, it looks like this:
This architecture allows you to analyze project costs not only according to the WBS structure, but also according to the intersection of analysts, for example, to collect all the costs of Vertical structures, Floors, Roof, etc.
The names of the seven classifiers (directory group - Classifiers) are specified by the user in the Names of Classifiers directory.
The work can be entered directly into the Work Plan or select the appropriate Normative Сollection. The work must be linked to the Work Tree. The unit of measurement and the physical volume of the work are specified for the work. If the work is selected from the Normative Collection, then the volume unit is already indicated in the directory.
Normative collections are entered manually by the user in the Normative collections directory, or can be created from the Work Template using the function Create normative collections from the Work Template. In this case, for each work that is in the Work Template, Normative collections will be formed with unit rates and resources and their norms necessary for the performance of the work.
Add resources to each job, specifying the unit of measurement of the resource
For each job, we indicate the resources needed to perform the job, or choose a resource from the Resources directory and indicate the consumption norms, or they will already be filled in from the Normative collection. Resources can be previously entered in the Resources directory.
Specify resource prices
The cost of work is calculated by the resource method, that is, it is the total cost of all resources and the cost of Invoices. The resource price can be specified in two ways: ● directly in the Work Plan, for each resource manually in the appropriate places,● or the price is filled in automatically, if the resource prices table is filled in by the type of prices that will be specified in the project directory.
It is possible to specify prices by resources in the table Prices of resources by price types manually, or download from excel files.
When specifying the price, pay attention to the date of price fixation and the Type of price by which the value is fixed. Prices can be specified both for calculating the cost of works and for calculating the cost of realization of works, depending on the type of price at which prices are fixed and the types prices specified in the Projects directory.
In the Work Plan, the Update function updates the price for the specified date according to the type of price specified in the Project.
Overheads are overhead costs that are calculated depending on the base of direct costs, as well as taxes and revenues (estimated profit), which is also calculated from the base of direct and overhead costs.
Overheads add costs to direct costs and as a result we get the full cost of the work and the project in general. Overheads can be expenses, VAT, Estimated profit (hereinafter KP). Invoices can be attached to a resource, job, branch of work, and the project as a whole.
Material costs, direct costs, wages of workers, drivers, all components of the estimate, including KP, can be the basis for calculating invoices. When assigning Invoices to work, the cost of Invoices and the cost of work \ project with Invoices are automatically calculated.
The Overhead costs guide is filled in by users and can be used in various projects.
The Cost estimate is ready!
Work plan template
Creating a template
The estimate can be saved as an estimate or as a Template, and used in the future when Creating estimates for other typical projects.
It is also possible to create a template based on the project estimate using the function Create normative template.
Creating a Work Plan using a Template
Project templates are stored in the Project Templates list.
It is possible to create a project estimate based on a template using the Create based on a template function, while specifying which project to use.
Templates for all works have unit volumes of works, the user specifies real physical volumes for each work.
In the following articles, we will consider the planning of the project in time, the transfer of works to subcontracting, and planning the need for resources.
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